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Are Artificial Sweeteners Bad for Diabetes?

Artificial food sweeteners can replace sugar to sweeten a variety of foods and beverages. According to the American Diabetes Association, people with diabetes do not have to completely forgo all added sugar. You may include artificial sweeteners on a diabetes diet, but use in moderation. Sugar-free foods may contain unhealthy amounts of fat and refined carbohydrates.Artificial sweeteners approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration include acesulfame-k, aspartame, saccharin, sucralose and neotame. You can also substitute stevia for sugar, but it is a natural, plant-based sweetener rather than an artificial one.


Artificial sweeteners fall into the category of free foods on a diabetes diet. Free foods contain fewer than 20 calories and no more than 5 g of carbohydrate per serving. Unlike sugar, artificial sweeteners do not contain any calories or carbohydrate. Your diabetes diet plan should promote a healthy weight, so choosing calorie-free artificial sweeteners may help you reach your weight goal. Because artificial sweeteners do not contain any carbohydrate, consuming them will not cause your blood glucose levels to rise.

 

The fact that artificial food sweeteners are calorie-free and carbohydrate-free may lead you to falsely believe that choosing foods prepared with artificial sweeteners is a healthier alternative to foods prepared with sugar. Special diabetic desserts made from artificial sweeteners may actually contain just as many -- if not more calories than the original version made with sugar. Read nutrition labels before purchasing commercial foods that contain artificial sweeteners.

 

 

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