sugar alcohol

I've been trying to cut my sugar consumption, I'm one of the geeks reading the ingredients labels on canned products.
On some items marked "low sugar", it reads like: 5 grams sugar, 15 grams sugar alcohol
What does that mean?
-- RIch
Reply to
RichD
I have no idea what "sugar alcohol" means and do not see it mentioned on any canned products I have. First, is the label on something made in the US, or perhaps some other English speaking country? Label laws do vary. Is the item perhaps something with added alcohol, and the term "sugar alcohol" means the ethyl (drinking) alcohol added was fermented from sugar cane? The closest I can come is Devil John Moonshine no. 9 which is described as spirits distilled from 98% sugar cane and 2% corn, and it contains 45% alcohol by volume. Devil John was a civil war soldier, lawman, and moonshiner from Kentucky. A Kentucky company now makes this legal version of moonshine much as it was made in the 1800s.
Reply to
cwdjrxyz
I had not heard the term and googled it:
formatting link

Looks like they mean things like sorbitol and mannitol which are made by hydrogenation of sucrose, are sweet, but caloric content is lower.
Funny sorbitol is not as effective as I thought it was. I was told they used to make sorbitol candy but it has a laxative effect since it is largely undigested.
Reply to
Frank
They really should be listed under a separate category from carbs. Sugar alcohols don't act like carbs, nor like fats. Glycerol, which forms the backbone of mono, di, and tri-glycerides is a sugar alcohol. The digestive upsets caused by sugar alcohols vary by person and by type. My nephew is a big fan of erythritol. My only problem with sugar alcohols is the mouth chill. Anyone who has ever chewed a piece of sugarless gum knows the sensation. Sugar free chocolate tends to be made with maltitol. Some folks love sugar alcohols. I wish I was among them. They are metabolized more like alcohols, rather than sugars, but more often end up as glucose rather than ketones. Therefore, they have limited usefulness for those who are controlling carbs. Hope that helps.
--Bryan
Reply to
Bryan
Reading labels is good for you!
It means sugar "substitutes" such as maltitol, sorbitol, and so forth. Look at the ingredients. If it ends in "ol" it's probably a sugar alconol. Labelling of these products is somewhat deceptive. It is allowable to state "sugar free" or as on yours, low sugar on the label where these ingredients are used, yet they definitly add to carbohydrate counts. You may even see claims that it has "low impact" carbs or similar nonsense. It is less carbs, but sugar free does not mean carb free.
Federal nutritional labelling laws apply only to the "carbohydrates" as listed on the nutritional panel. All other carb claims are unregulated and have more to do with marketing than nutrition.
Try this. In the store, pick up two similar candy packages, one regular, one marked sugar free. Then look at the carbohydrates. The sugar free will be lower but by no means will it be the low carb candy you might expect. Also look at the number of pieces you get for a given amount of carbs. You will get a little more with sugar free but by no means is it neutral or "free" food. Given that real sugar still tastes better you may as well eat the real thing, just a little less, and enjoy it more.
Sugar alcohols can be hard to digest and cause distress to many people. Some people can eat lots of this stuff but I am not one of them. If you're trying to lose weight, or follow a low carb regimen, eating this stuff with the presumption that it has no impact can mess up your plan. Fact is some people metabolize these carbs, and some don't. If you metabolize them, you get an impact.
Here's a comparison, data from the Hershey's website:
Twizzlers: Sugar free, 6 pc serving, 34g carbs. Regular, 4pc serving, 36g carbs.
Not all that much different.
Here's a pretty good explanation of why these products aren't as great as the claims make them sound, and a debunking of "net carbs/low impact carbs" labelling:
formatting link

Here's another:
formatting link

And of course the obligatory wiki reference:
formatting link

HTH.
MartyB
Reply to
Nunya Bidnits
It means it contains a product that is a known laxative. Don't buy it!
Why are you trying to cut sugar consumption? Sugar in and of itself isn't a bad thing unless perhaps you have reactive hypoglycemia, pre-diabetes or diabetes. And then you need to watch your overall carbs. So a large fruit salad could be worse for you than a small piece of candy.
Reply to
Julie Bove
It's still made. Available in most any grocery or drug store. Mainly aimed at diabetics and dieters but IMO it's really bad stuff.
Reply to
Julie Bove
me folks love sugar alcohols. =A0They are metabolized more
I'm still unclear on the concept. For someone pre-diabetic, should he treat sugar alcohol like sugar?
And what is the relationship between carbs and sugar?
-- Rich
Reply to
RichD
I'm still unclear on the concept. For someone pre-diabetic, should he treat sugar alcohol like sugar?
And what is the relationship between carbs and sugar?
Sugar alcohol can raise blood sugar. The only way to tell if it will for you is to test your blood sugar before you eat whatever the food is and then test again 2 hours later. I don't eat sugar alcohols but I do have gum on occasion. I can have one piece. I used to chew a whole pack of small pieces at a time and that would raise my blood sugar.
Reply to
Julie Bove
In most countries you would have to say which sugar alcohol by name.
Or cheapskate Austrian wine makers. The antidote to ethelene glycol poisoning such as there is one is to dose the patient with ethanol.
formatting link

Regards, Martin Brown
Reply to
Martin Brown
Like I said, I never heard of the term and I spent a summer, ages ago, on a summer job as an analytical lab tech where we monitored the conversion of glucose and sucrose to sorbitol and mannitol. They were sold as food additives or converted to surfactants, explosives and other derivatives.
To me, it is a manufactured term for use in marketing. Makes it sound like a type of sugar, which it is not.
Does not fit the carbohydrate definition:
carbohydrate: any of a large group of organic compounds, including sugars, such as sucrose, and polysaccharides, such as cellulose, glycogen, and starch, that contain carbon, hydrogen, and oxygen, with the general formula Cm(H2O)n: an important source of food and energy for animals
Reply to
Frank

Hi Mike point of interest - In the late '80s a well-known Australian wine company was finrd for illegally adding sorbitol to its wines. Cheers!
Martin
Reply to
Martin Field

DrinksForum website is not affiliated with any of the manufacturers or service providers discussed here. All logos and trade names are the property of their respective owners.