What are some low calorie/low carbohydrate sweeteners and what are some examples?
There are a variety of low calorie and low carbohydrate sweeteners that can be used to substitute regular table sugar. Stevia
(Truvia or PureVia) is a fairly new sweetener on the market to use in place of sugar. Generally 1 packet of stevia can be used
to replace 2 teaspoons of sugar. Sweeteners such as aspartame (NutraSweet) and saccharin (Sweet n Low) are concentrated in
sweetness. One packet of these sweeteners is equivalent to the sweetness of 2 teaspoons of table sugar. Splenda can
be measured in equal proportions to sugar - cup for cup.
How do I use these sweeteners?
Recipes for sweeteners are available from the manufacturers. Many
manufacturers provide contact information including phone number and website on
packaging. Use this information to access recipes for these products.
What about sugar alcohols?
Sugar alcohols (e.g. xylitol or sorbitol) contain calories and have effects on blood sugar.
Consume these sweeteners in moderation because large quantities may have a laxative effect.
Can I find sugar substitutes in pre-packaged foods?
Sweeteners are not only found in little packets but often exist in packaged food. Diet soda, yogurts, pudding and gelatin mixes,
candies, and drink mixes contain sweeteners.
Different sweeteners work favorably under certain conditions. For
example, some sweeteners might not bake well but are great in cold
desserts. Check with your diabetes educator or dietitian for recipe
suggestions and to learn more about these sweeteners.
Christine Carlson, MS, RD, BC-ADM, CDE
GlucoMenu® Nutrition Director