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Baking with Sugar Substitutes

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Nutrition guidelines do not see sugar as unsafe for diabetics any longer. However, it is counted as part of your allotment of carbohydrates. Many foods with sugar frequently are high in fat content. Those are foods you probably should use only on special occasions.

Baking with Sugar Substitutes

Artificial sweeteners are "free foods" for diabetics, and therefore do not raise blood glucose levels. You can can add them to a meal plan or in your baking. Now, you can use moderate amounts of sweeteners to make many special things people with diabetes miss eating in their new diet regime.

Saccharin

Saccharin is 200 to 700 times sweeter than table sugar. You can use saccharin to sweeten hot or cold foods. Pregnant women are cautioned not to use it. Saccharin is purchased under the brand names Sucaryl, Sugar Twin, Sweet Magic, Sweet 'n Low, and Zero-Cal.

Aspartame

Aspartame is 160 to 220 times sweeter than table sugar. It is not appropriate for recipes that are cooked more than 20 minutes because the chemical compound will break down. Therefore, to use it, you can add it at the end of cooking recipes such as puddings.

People with a rare condition called phenylketonuria (PKU) should avoid aspartame. Otherwise, it is a safe sweetener. The brand names are Equal, Sweetmate, and NatraTaste.

Acesulfame Potassium

This sweetener, also known as acesulfame-K, came on the market in 1988. You can use this sweetener in baking and cooking as it will not break down when heated.

Acesulfame potassium is two hundred times sweeter than table sugar. When used with sugar in baking it creates a very palatable texture. The tabletop sweetener is called Sweet One.

Sucralose

This product is made from sucrose and was approved in 1998. Sucralose is 600 times sweeter than table sugar. It can be used in recipes that require prolonged heating without loosing any sweetness. It has no reported side effects or restrictions on its use by pregnant women. You can purchase sucralose under the brand name Splenda or EZ-Sweetz. EZ-Sweetz (sucralose) is a high concentrated liquid sucralose. EZ Sweetz contains no carbohydrate fillers, which are used in the traditional packets.

Low-calorie Sweeteners

Low-calorie sweeteners provide sweet taste without calories, or with very few calories. Most low-calorie sweeteners are not digested by the body and provide no calories.

Low-calorie sweeteners are also called "non-nutritive sweeteners," "intense sweeteners," "high intensity sweeteners," "high potency sweeteners," or "alternative sweeteners".

The first low-calorie sweetener, saccharin, was discovered in 1878. And since then, a number of other low-calorie sweeteners including cyclamate, aspartame, acesulfame K, neohesperidine DC, thaumatin, sucralose and alitame have been produced and used around the world.

The consumption of low-calorie sweeteners continues to increase. Consumer demand for low-calorie foods and beverages has been the major force behind this growth.

In the USA, for example, a national consumer survey shows that the consumption of low-calorie foods and beverages by people aged 18 and older has doubled in the past decade. This increasing interest in a health-conscious lifestyle and advances in food technology are pushing the development of more and better tasting low-calorie foods and beverages.

Low-calorie sweeteners are also used in other consumer products such as pharmaceuticals, chewing gums, dentifrices, mouthwashes and fluoride supplements.

Low Calorie Sweeteners and Weight Gain

Low-calorie sweeteners can help with weight management and do not cause weight gain.

As Americans face increasing obesity rates, low-calorie sweeteners can offer help with weight management. Research indicates that people who incorporate foods and beverages sweetened with low-calorie sweeteners into their diet in place of calorie-containing sweeteners actually consume fewer calories than those who do not. Additionally, since they are not deprived of sweets, individuals consuming low-calorie sweeteners may feel more satisfied with their eating plans, helping them to lose weight and keep it off.

In one study, researchers at Purdue University found that consumption of saccharin led to increased appetite and weight gain in rats. However, due to a known affinity for saccharin of rats, small sample size, and other flaws in the study design, many experts agree that the results cannot be applied to humans. While a few studies have suggested that low-calorie sweeteners may cause cravings and/or lead to weight gain, these studies have not changed the overall scientific consensus that low-calorie sweeteners can aid in weight management.

Clinical studies conducted in humans over the past 20 years have shown that low calorie sweeteners can help with weight loss and maintenance. A review of aspartame's role in weight management demonstrated a weight loss of 0.4 pounds a week when aspartame-sweetened products were substituted for those sweetened with sugar. Similar findings were seen in a study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition in the late 90s.

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Download a free (no strings!) Sugar Substitutes Conversion Chart on us. Simply click the picture below to grab a PDF copy for your personal use.

Free Sugar Substitutes Conversion Chart