Tag Archives: saccharine

Brenna Reviews Sugar Substitutes

Too late now!

Paleo diet purists don’t eat artificial sweeteners.  Yet many adherents eat paleo-style only 80 or 90% of the time, partly because they miss their sweets.  Fruits and honey don’t always hit that sweet spot.

Dietitian Brenna at Eating Simple has a post on sugar substitutes, which I sometimes refer to as non-caloric sweeteners (not entirely accurate). She reviewed sucralose, saccharine, aspartame, and acesulfame potassium.

A few days later, she reviewed sugar alcohols.

Many who have a sweet tooth, including myself, use sugar substitutes such as sugar alcohols. Sometimes they affect blood sugar levels, although not as much as table sugar (sucrose).

Brenna links to a Mayo Clinic article on artificial sweeteners.  Also at the Mayo Clinic website is an article by Dr. Maria Collazo-Clavell on use of artificial sweeteners specifically by people with diabetes.  Like Brenna, she notes that sugar alcohols can raise blood sugar levels in people with diabetes.

Dr. Richard K. Bernstein says acceptable sugar substitutes for PWDs (people with diabetes) are:

  • saccharin tablets or liquid
  • aspartame tablets
  • acesulfame-K
  • stevia
  • sucralose tablets and liquid Splenda

He says to be wary of any of these in powdered form because they are usually then mixed with dextrose (glucose) or maltodextrin or other type of sugar to increase bulk. So blood sugars go up.

I never got excited enough to cover this topic in detail myself. Thanks, Brenna!

Steve Parker, M.D.