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Old 07-14-2005, 05:03 AM   #1
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I Didn't Realize :(

All this time I thought I was doing things like I should (without doctor's advice of course) by purchasing sugar free cookies and candies because I have a gluclose intolerence and have to be very careful with sugar.....and then I ran across this old article on the net.

Sugar-Free Shortcomings
For people with diabetes, sugar-free cookies are not a free ride

June 2003
June 2003

= Full article available

You or someone in your family has been diagnosed with diabetes. So on your trips down the cookie aisle, you now pass up the sugar-laden Oreos, the Chips Ahoy, and the Mallo-mars and opt instead for sugar-free varieties: Murray Sugar-Free Chocolate Chip cookies, Snackwell’s Sugar-Free Lemon Cremes, and Archway’s Sugar-Free Oatmeal.

You don’t like the taste of these cookies as much as the taste of Oreos or Chips Ahoy. And you don’t like the price tag, either. They’re often much more expensive. But the label on the sugar-free brands says the manufacturer is a “proud sponsor of the American Diabetes Association,” and you know yourself that to keep down blood sugar and therefore avoid complications from diabetes, you have to stick with the sugar-free stuff. Or do you?

The truth is that sugar-free cookies are no better for people with diabetes than their sugary counterparts. That’s right. It doesn’t matter whether you buy the Sugar-Free Lemon Cremes or the Oreos. The only reason the “proud sponsor” wording gets on the package is that the cookie company gives money to the American Diabetes Association for research and advocacy. “In no way should the wording and the logo on the label be construed as an endorsement or seal of approval or call to choose one type of cookie over another,” says the National Vice President for Clinical Affairs at the American Diabetes Associa-tion, Nathaniel Clark, MD, MS, RD.

How can a sugar-free cookie be no better for someone with diabetes than a regular one? The reason is that, for the most part, it’s the total amount of carbohydrates eaten that influences blood sugar, or glucose, levels in someone with diabetes, not just the amount of simple sugar. And the sugar-free versions have as many grams of carbohydrates as the regular cookies—and pretty much the same number of calories, too. That’s because much of the carbohydrate in cookies comes from flour, not just sugar. Thus, taking out the sugar and putting in a sugar substitute doesn’t really change things much. Indeed, often the substances used to replace sugar are not totally carbohydrate-free themselves.

That’s why, as the box on page 6 shows, two Chips Ahoy cookies have 14 carbohydrate grams, just one more than two Murray sugar-free chocolate chip cookies. They also have a pretty much equal number of calories—about 100. Similarly, two Nabisco Mallomars have 17 grams of carbo- hydrate; one Archway’s sugar-free oatmeal cookie, 16. And the calorie difference is just 10. It’s all too close to forego your favorite cookies for the sugar-free kinds.

In fact, the sugar-free brands get some people into more trouble than the regular varieties, says Janine Clifford-Murphy, a registered dietitian and certified diabetes educator who counsels people with diabetes in the Boston area. “They think sugar-free means lower in calories,” she explains, “so they end up eating more than they would of sugary cookies, piling on the calories and sometimes messing up their blood glucose because of all the carbohydrates in sugar-free cookies.”

They sometimes mess up their digestive tracts, too. The sugar substitutes added to many of the sugar-free cookies are sugar alcohols such as sorbitol, isomalt, and maltitol, which cause intestinal discomfort and diarrhea in some people. That’s why, when a sugar alcohol is the substitute used, there’s a warning about these unpleasant side effects on the label.

Consumers should expect to see more and more sugar-free and no-sugar-added choices all over the supermarket. An estimated 17 million Americans have been diagnosed with diabetes. Another 16 million have impaired glucose tolerance, which means their blood sugar after meals is below the official cutoff point for diabetes but higher than normal, so they are at heightened risk for the disease. Marketers, including Hershey, plan to capitalize on those segments of the population by rolling out sugar-free versions of items like Reese’s peanut butter cups and Hershey chocolate bars.

People can make sure they’re doing right by themselves by checking the number of carbohydrates, which is listed in the Nutrition Facts panel on virtually all packaged supermarket items. In some foods, carbohydrate content will drop with a sugar-free version but not disappear altogether. In other cases, such as with soda, pancake syrup, jello, and popsicles, the carbohydrate content will drop considerably. These foods have little to no carbohydrates from non-sugar ingredients, and the sugar substitutes used—aspartame and sucralose—have almost no calories whatsoever.


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Old 07-14-2005, 07:06 AM   #2
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Groups or organizations should be able to tell companies like that NOT to put things that can very easily be taken as to be something that the group or organization approves of.
It can be harmful to people and they seem to not care about that.

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Old 07-14-2005, 08:48 AM   #3
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That's why I'm amazed that low-carb crazes go in such cycles. It's the perfect lifestyle to control insulin ups and downs - if done properly. Carb control handles/eliminates those shakes, hot flashes, and other nasties that hit when the sugar/flour carby foods wear off. Not to mention a host of other nice little side benefits (and you don't have to give up cheese & wine).

(insert: not-fanatical smilie here)
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Old 07-14-2005, 09:30 AM   #4
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Also eating no fat foods will not help you loose weight.
Low fat/no fat is for people who need to watch the good fats vs bad fats. They load them up with sugar and calories to make for the lack of taste (fat).
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Old 07-14-2005, 02:06 PM   #5
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Thanks for posting this very informative article. You're right, it stinks. You try to do what is best for your health and end up no better off. What Raine said is true too. When they take out the fat, they just add sugar. It all really boils down to those words we sometimes hate to hear--Eat a balanced diet, using moderation, drink lots of water, and exercise.

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Old 07-14-2005, 04:43 PM   #6
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Thanks for posting the article about the S/F cookie,it cetainaly an eye opener. I'm on the SBD which is not a low carb diet, but a good carb instead and I watch my sugar contents in all products,even though i'm not a diabetic,I have insulin resisitence and have to watch my carbs,,but never thought of watching the calories. maybe that why I'm STALLING. Thanks for the sharing Hugs Cooking Gal
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Old 07-14-2005, 04:58 PM   #7
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In the end it's calories in versus calories out, it's the only way to lose weight. I don't eat much in the way of processed foods at all, and I have never bought the sugar free or fat free foods. I sometimes by fat reduced, as long as it's natural, like hoummous made with extra yoghurt and lemon juice rather than oil - sometimes a girl just doesn't have time to make it herself!!!!

There is a great book called the Fat Fallacy, that I highly recommend, which compares the standard US diet to the French diet, and draws the conclusion that the increase in obesity in the States (and other Western countries) correlates with the rapid increase in demand for low fat and fat free foods.
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Old 07-14-2005, 05:12 PM   #8
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What is a SBO Diet?
May I always be the person my dog thinks I am.

Walk towards the Sunshine and the Shadows will fall behind you!
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Old 07-15-2005, 12:24 AM   #9
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SBD stands for South Beach Diet, PA Bakers husband has been on that one. It's a healthy carb diet.

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