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Do Polyols Affect Ketosis

Finding Hidden Carbs On A Ketogenic Diet

Finding Hidden Carbs On A Ketogenic Diet

Hidden carbs on a ketogenic diet, especially when you’re starting out and trying to get into ketosis, are your “enemy number one.” Carbs aren’t necessarily bad. But they can keep you from achieving ketosis, or keep you in a weight plateau you can’t seem to get past no matter what you do. Every little bit of the hidden carbs can quickly add up and even take you out of ketosis. The Basics: Net Carbs and Total Carbs In the US, food labels have “total carbs” that include fiber content. In Europe, that’s not the case. Net carbs doesn’t count fiber. Why? Fiber is non-impact or low-impact carbs with low GI (glycemic index) that don’t affect your blood sugar levels. They’re slowly digested and released into your bloodstream in a sustained period, making them perfect for meeting your everyday energy needs for physical challenges and mental alertness. The tricky part is this: when beginners confuse low-carb as synonymous with ketogenic diet, and “net carbs” [1] end up NOT counting carbs from veggies, proteins, and the carbs and sugar alcohols often found in “carb-free,” “sugar-free” foods. Low-carb is not low enough. They all count if you want to get into ketosis. Remember: LC ≠ K (Low-carb does not equal ketosis). The Trickiest Hidden Carbs That Trip You Up Hidden carbs are everywhere, sometimes innocent, sometimes not. Many believe that as long as you cook your own meals and avoid processed food, you’ll avoid hidden carbs. Not really. For example, you could be making your own tacos, including the chips and sauce, and you could still be racking up the same amount of carbs as if they were all store-bought. Especially for beginners, hidden carbs lurk in “healthy” options, like sugar-free foods. Sugar Alcohols/Alternatives Sugar alcohols, a Continue reading >>

Sugar Alcohol Facts

Sugar Alcohol Facts

Sugar alcohol sweeteners (also known as polyols) usually contain less calories than regular sugar, and have virtually no impact on blood sugar and dental health. Sounds great, except for some disclaimers: since they can't be digested in the human digestive system, these sweeteners can cause gut issues such as flatulence, bloating and diarrhea. In addition, most of these sweeteners are excreted in the urine, which increases the amount and frequency of urination. This increased urination will result in a higher loss of body minerals such as calcium, magnesium and potassium and possibly cause muscle cramping. At higher intake amounts, this effect is more pronounced, and in rat studies, has resulted in changes in kidney function and structure. (See this reference: Nutrient Requirements of Laboratory Animals,: Fourth Revised Edition, 1995, page 22). Some people with blood sugar issues may experience blood sugar spikes after eating these sweeteners, but this is an individual response. Since all of these types of sugar substitutes contain some calories and carbs, be sure to count them into your daily totals if you are on a low carb diet plan. Below is an overview of the most common sugar alcohol sweeteners: Erythritol Erythritol has about 3/4 the sweetening power as regular sugar, with only a tenth of the calories. One cup of erythritol contains about 10 grams of carbohydrate, and 40 calories. This sugar alcohol is best used in conjunction with other sugar substitutes such as stevia, sucralose and glycerin. Lauren over at the Healthy Indulgences Blog suggests using erythritol in desserts which are of a moist consistency for best results, since erythritol does not attract moisture as regular sugar and some other sweeteners do. Hence, it has a tendency to dry out the foods to wh Continue reading >>

Are All Polyols Zero-carb?

Are All Polyols Zero-carb?

Low-carb and Keto diets are gaining popularity. The market is slowly waking up to recognise our niche. I keep seeing new product brands – low-carb cookies, Keto bars, sugar-free sweets… It’s great to have so much choice. Unfortunately, not all these products are as good as they claim. Small companies – usually run by low-carb dieters and enthusiasts – tend to stick to the diet’s principles. They care about their clients and make products that are genuinely low-carb. However, some unscrupulous businesses jump on the bandwagon to make a quick buck. Either they don’t understand low-carb well enough – or they don’t care. Their products might carry the “low-carb” or “sugar-free” labels – while containing sugar, in some form or another. There is one particular trick that I see very often – incorrect labelling of sugar polyols. What are polyols You have probably already come across polyols in sugar-free products. Their names usually end in ”…ol”. Popular polyols are: xylitol sorbitol maltitol lactitol mannitol erythritol Polyols are organic substances derived from real sugar. Our bodies cannot process them in full. Therefore, not all the carbs they contain are digestible. So far, so good. The problem with polyols The biggest myth about polyols is that they are all zero-carb – not true! All polyols are partially non-digestible. But the digestible amount varies a great deal. It depends on the type of polyol – some are almost zero-carb, but some go as high as 60% carbs. The dirty trick by dodgy low-carb merchants is to pretend all polyols are zero-carb. They subtract grams of polyols from total carbs and bingo! They can slap something like “3g net carbs” on their product – whereas in reality, the carb content is much higher. Low-carb Continue reading >>

Sugar Alcohols

Sugar Alcohols

Discuss this article! Sugar Alcohols ALL ABOUT SUGAR ALCOHOLS (MALTITOL, SORBITOL, ISOMALT , etc..) These sweeteners are neither sugars, nor alcohols, but they are carbohydrates nonetheless. They are sometimes called POLYOLS, to avoid confusion. At the present time, they have not been legally classified for product labelling purposes, as are sugars, starch and fiber. So, some manufacturers are choosing to omit them from the total carb count in the nutrient data panel of the label (they MUST however declare the amount of sugar alcohol in the ingredient list). Because they aren't actually SUGAR, products that contain them may use the term "sugar free" on the label. Some manufacturers and distributors (esp. in Canada and Europe) are choosing to declare the full carbs in the nutrient data panel, and some diabetes associations and consumer groups are pressuring for gov't legislation to make this a legal requirement. There are some claims that sugar alcohols don't have carbs, and therefore don't count; that they can be completely subtracted if listed on the label. This statement is not entirely "false" but it is misleading. Sugar alcohols do have carbs, and approx. 1/2 to 3/4 the calories of regular sugar. They are more slowly and incompletely absorbed from the small intestine than sugar, thus producing a much smaller and slower rise in blood sugar ... and consequently insulin. But this is a YMMV thing. Some Type 1 diabetics have reported that they sense an immediate "sugar rush" from eating even a small amount. Others notice no change, and absolutely no effect on ketosis. Sugar alcohols do have carb calories, and the body will use these as fuel, or store as fat, whether or not insulin is involved. You need to look at the total CALORIES for one serving of the product. Subtrac Continue reading >>

Complete Guide To Sweeteners On A Low-carb Ketogenic Diet

Complete Guide To Sweeteners On A Low-carb Ketogenic Diet

Most people on low-carb find that once they get used to the diet, the cravings for sugar go away. Many even claim not to use any sweeteners at all. However, you may find it hard to give up sweets, especially at the beginning. I've been researching for natural low-carb sweeteners as well as other healthy alternatives to sugar. As always, there are many sweeteners you should avoid. I personally avoid using sweeteners regularly and only use them for occasional treats. In fact, most of my recipes in KetoDiet, KetoDiet Basic and my new cookbook don't include any sweeteners at all. If your target is weight loss, sweeteners may impair your progress, as even so-called "zero-carb" sweeteners may cause cravings. If your weight is stalling, avoiding sweeteners or joining my 30-Day Clean Eating Challenge is a good way to break the weight loss plateau. You can download a print-friendly version of this guide here! Best Natural Low-carb Sweeteners Following is an overview of healthy sweeteners you could use provided your net carbs limit allows for it. People with very low net carbs limit should avoid using anything other than "zero-carb" sweeteners, like Stevia, Monk fruit sweetener or Erythritol. 1. Stevia Stevia is an herb, which is commonly known as "sugar leaf". The extract from this herb is used as a sweetener and sugar substitute. Based on the USDA database, Stevia belongs to a group of non-nutritive sweeteners. This means there are no calories, vitamins or any other nutrients. The availability of Stevia can vary from country to country. Nowadays, it is commonly used in the US and was approved for use in the EU in 2011. The health effects of Stevia have been questioned for the past few decades. However, based on recent studies of the WHO (World Health Organization), Stevia extra Continue reading >>

The Best And Worst Low Carb Sweeteners

The Best And Worst Low Carb Sweeteners

Most people that start a keto diet plan find that they have some intense cravings for sugar in the beginning, but will dissipate after a few weeks. Even the seasoned low carber will tell you that they have cravings every once in a while, sometimes burning inside them so deep they want to give up to temptation. That’s where sweeteners come in, where you can make or bake things you usually can’t eat. Of course, you will have to watch out because most things that say “carb free” actually still contain carbs. Make sure you take the net carbs of any impacting sweetener into consideration when tracking your macros. As a general rule of thumb, it’s always best to try to avoid sweeteners in the beginning. They’re well known to cause cravings and some may stall your progress with over-use. Stay strict and try to only occasionally consume sweet treats when you are on a low carb diet. Types of Sweeteners In general, there are a few classifications of sweeteners. There are natural sweeteners, sugar alcohols, and synthetic sweeteners (or artificial sweeteners). There are a few others that aren’t exactly classified in these categories (like glycerin based sweeteners) but they are quite uncommon and rarely used, so we’ll skip going over them. For a ketogenic diet, I personally suggest sticking with erythritol and stevia (or a blend) because they are both naturally occurring, don’t cause blood sugar or insulin spikes, and sweeten just perfectly. When used in combination, they seem to cancel out the aftertaste that each has, and work like a charm. When you purchase sweeteners, make sure to take a look at the ingredients on the packaging. You normally want the pure sweetener, rather than having fillers such as maltodextrin, dextrose, or polydextrose which can cause spik Continue reading >>

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