Sugar alcohols, also know as polyols,
are ingredients used as sweeteners and bulking agents.
Despite name, these aren't sugars or alcohols. They
occur naturally in foods and come from plant products
such as fruits and berries. As a sugar substitute, they
provide fewer calories than regular sugar. This is because
they are converted to glucose more slowly, require little
or no insulin to be metabolized and don't cause sudden
increases in blood sugar.
Count the "Net Impact Carbs" provided
by the manufacturer of the low-carb product. To do this
take the Total Carbohydrates listed and subtract both
the fiber and the sugar alcohols from the total.
- CarboLite Dark Chocolate Bar (50g)
- Serving Size: 1 Bar (50g)
- Total Carbohydrates: 27g
- Fiber: 3g
- Sugar Alcohols: 22g
- 27g - 3g - 22g = 2g net impact carbs to count
There are some negatives associated with
sugar alcohols. The most common side effect is the possibility
of bloating and diarrhea when sugar alcohols are eaten
in excessive amounts. There is also some evidence that
sugar alcohols, can cause a “laxative effect.”
Beware as these products do not affect
everyone in same way. For some people they are a godsend.
For others, they can cause stalls.
Forms of sugar alcohol
The sugar alcohols commonly found in foods
are sorbitol, mannitol, xylitol, isomalt and hydrogenated