Monday, February 25, 2013

Keep the gas give me the sweet!

Ever try a sugar free recipe that left you feeling bloated and needing to be closer to the restroom then you wanted to be?

If you ever had the chance to try some sugar free chocolates or maybe a sugar free chocolate cake, chances are it was made with Maltitol.  Chances are you also ended up with gas or the urge to use the restroom a little more then usual.  Today we will be going over Maltitol and finding out why this particular sugar substitute gives you the nasty side effects.

Let me start by telling you what Maltitol is first just to get an idea where it comes from.  Maltitol is known as 4-O-α-glucopyranosyl-D-sorbitol, a sugar alcohol or a polyol that has a lesser effect on the blood glucose level and tooth decay.  This sugar substitute is about 25% less sweeter then sucrose or table sugar.

Now that we both have an idea what it is, lets see if we can understand why it gives you gas.  From what I have researched, I noticed that not many sites offer a clear understanding on why Maltitol causes such side effects.  In fact I only came across one that explained Maltitol was an extract from fruit and other plants such as wheat and corn.  Indulging in these things can cause the negative side effects for many of us because in small portions it actually helps the intestinal system.
I guess its the way nature helps us keep a clean colon.  If you enjoy Maltitol or haven't even tried it, don't be scared because only 5% of people have the negative side effects associated with it.  I myself had little effects, but I only tried a very small portion of dessert.

So give it a chance and see what you think, but just try it in small amounts at first so you're not fooled like many others! Come back again and see what we find out what there is to know about sucralose.

Artificial or Not! Does this make me look FAT? pt. 2

Continue on, don't be afraid to try new things.  Sweet treats and sugar free, need the knowledge then follow me...

Here we go again with another beautiful day.  Let us continue to explore this amazing world of sugar substitutes.  We left off last time with a little bit of information on how many types of sugar substitutes there are.  Today I promised you a recipe of my choice that you can try for yourself.  I went through this recipe using different types of sweeteners to see just how much of a change there could be in the finished product.

Here is a very simple recipe that I use.

Chocolate oatmeal cookies - no bake

1 cup butter
2 cups xylitol
1 cup milk
1/4 cup cocoa
1 tsp vanilla
3 cups rolled oats

  • What you need to do is take a sauce pot and melt the butter.  
  • Then add the xylitol, cocoa and the milk, heat until the xylitol is dissolved completely. 
  • Now add the vanilla.  
  • Put the rolled oats in a bowl, metal or a bowl that will not melt from the hot mixture.  
  • Pour the contents of the pan over the oats and mix together.  
  • Once the mixture is combined together just scoop little balls out onto a parchment lined sheet tray or cookie sheet.
  • Let the cookies cool and harden, then enjoy!

You can add little amounts of chocolate chips or coconut to this if you would like to.     Also, keep in mind that these cookies will be very fragile and may fall apart slightly, do not be discouraged, it's normal.

This recipe is not only sugar free but gluten free as well because it has to flour in it.  Now I tried this recipe with three different sweeteners and xylitol seemed to work the best so far.  First attempt was with Equal (aspartame), the second being xylitol and the third was sucralose.

The first attempt works OK but the Equal does not seem to bring out the sweetness I was looking for and it dissolves instantly in the milk mixture making it hard to judge when it is ready.  The third attempt was very similar to the first as these sweeteners are very similar.

When you try this recipe with normal sugar, it comes out very similar to the one containing xylitol.  I think the only difference I found was in the sweetness.  If you have tried both sugar and xylitol within the same period of time, you know what I mean, very subtle but it is still there.

Please enjoy and if you have tried a recipe similar to this and have any feedback or would like to give feedback on this particular recipe please do so.  I hope you enjoyed this information and will join me again next time as we stroll further more in depth with sugar free delights!

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Artificial or Not! Does this make me look FAT? pt. 1

Working on getting healthy or just trying to keep your body the way it is, free from complications, today we start an exploration of ARTIFICIAL sweeteners and the vast world of other sugar SUBSTITUTES!

First off, what is an artificial sweetener and what is not?  Some of you might find it very easy to tell the difference, but others may not have a clue.  The definition of an artificial sweetener is: A synthetic sugar substitute that may be derived from natural occurring substances .  Other sugar substitutes come from natural sources like fruit and milk.

Each sweetener whether artificial or not has different baking and cooking capabilities and can change the texture/taste of the food you make.  I've looked around and found this list from and as far as I can see it was only missing one item which is swerve and I believe it is because of how new this product is, but it does have natural sweeteners on the right side that contain mass amounts of sugars so we wont be covering those items.

Artificial sweetenersSugar alcoholsNovel sweetenersNatural sweeteners
Acesulfame potassium (Sunett, Sweet One)ErythritolStevia extracts (Pure Via, Truvia)Agave nectar
Aspartame (Equal, NutraSweet)Hydrogenated starch hydrolysateTagatose (Naturlose)Date sugar
NeotameIsomaltTrehaloseFruit juice concentrate
Saccharin (SugarTwin, Sweet'N Low)LactitolHoney
Sucralose (Splenda)Maltitol

Maple syrup





As you can see there are many choices out there when it comes to sugar substitutes and it can be very beneficial to know what the side effects to these can be.  Just of the top of my head I know that Maltitol can cause bloating and whats known as a laxative effect like many other sugar alcohols listed above.

I don't know about you but I love dessert, but without the side of pepto!  Come on we deserve better then that.

So lets see what the most popular sugar substitute is today...What I come up with is aspartame (equal and nutrasweet).  Not a whole lot of popularity contests going on so not much research to base it on, but what I am basing this on is that it is the most sold as of right now.  If some one knows something different, please step and mention it. Now a days the Internet is so cluttered with junk it's hard to find an answer sometimes.

So why is it sold the most? Well it was one of the first sweeteners to come out that was not found to be cancer forming and that joined with a low-calorie intake, it became a hit very quickly.  It nearly was tanked after a false email was spread claiming there were a hundred different ways aspartame was bad for you.  That was quickly squashed and the business has been going up ever since.

I want to leave you with this for now and open this up for comments. I will be checking in periodically through the night.  I realize there is a vast amount of knowledge to be further discussed and I hope to cover that in the next few weeks to come, but I would like to keep tonight's discussion on this post please.

JOIN tomorrow as we explore a recipe of my choice and the different sweeteners I used to see what the different outcomes were.


Tuesday, February 19, 2013

What's in it for you? Sugar ATTACK!!!

You love sugar, who doesn't?

Going to the store as children we all love candy, you don't think of the bad effects, why would you? DIVE in and go CRAZY with sweets! You have the chocolate lovers, the jawbreaker biters, pixie stix sniffers, gummy bear chewers...You get a sugar high just thinking about it.

20 years later...

You understand that sugar can change the way you live your life...

You find yourself choosing between chocolate and an apple.  Sure the apple is healthy and very delicious, but CHOCOLATE is so good!  Give me a banana, then give me a banana dipped in chocolate...10 times better duh!

It's getting to be easier to choose now because sugar free items are becoming popular, but so many things taste bitter or have that strange aftertaste.  I find myself buying some sugar free items and I like some, but others taste so horrible it makes me wonder why I choose sugar free at all.

You know just as well as I do that sugar can cause diabetes or other problems to appear, which we all want to avoid, but something always keeps pulling us back. I'm going to start an experiment and see what types of sweeteners do what, why not right?

Find the right taste without the surprise, join me and try it to, lets kick sugars ass while enjoying it deliciously! If you agree or disagree with something, maybe you know something I do not, let me know.  Don't hold back let it out I do not get offended easily and I love insights from other people.

I'll be back tomorrow to talk about different sweeteners and see what we can find out about them.  I want to talk about my experience with them and see what you think as well, after all we all would like something healthier that taste just as good as the real thing....Sugar Free You Later