Diabetes Q&A (Questions & Answers) allows people with diabetes to ask health professionals questions free of charge.
E-mail your diabetes related questions to: firstname.lastname@example.org
Q. How many grams of sugar is the limit for one day, and what is the difference between sugar and sugar alcohol?
A. Sugar alcohols are reduced calorie sugar substitutes that can be found
in sugar-free candies, desserts, chewing gum, and other products. Sugar alcohols do not have as much
effect on blood sugar in comparison to regular table sugar.
The American Diabetes Association recommends subtracting 1/2 of the
sugar alcohol grams from the total carbohydrate in a food. For example,
if a food contains 10 grams total carbohydrate and 4 grams sugar
alcohols, subtract 2 grams sugar alcohol (1/2 the amount in the food)
from 10 grams carbohydrate to equal 8 grams total carbohydrate.
A word of caution, sugar alcohols in excess can cause diarrhea and
therefore should be used in moderation.
With regards to the amount of sugar to have each day... the thinking has
shifted to counting total carbohydrates instead of only sugar. You
should ask your doctor for a referral to a Registered Dietitian and
Certified Diabetes Educator to help you with the amount of carbohydrate
you should consume.
Christine Carlson, MS, RD, BC-ADM, CDE
FOODPICKER ® Nutrition Director
Previous E-mails to Christine (FOODPICKER ® Nutrition Director)
A1c: What should my A1c level be?
Acai Berry: Is all the hype over acai berry for real, is it worth the high cost?
Alcohol: Can I have wine with dinner?
Apple: How many sugars are in an apple?
Carbohydrate: Carbohydrate or calories?
Chromium: Should I be taking Chromium?
Diabetes: Can you reverse diabetes?
Diabetes: Can you reverse pre-diabetes?
Dining Out: We eat out a lot. Could you give us some suggestions for Japanese and Chinese?
Dreamfields Pasta: How does Dreamfields pasta count carbohydrates?
Fiber: Which items are the best for fiber?
Flax: Should I add ground flax seed to my meal plan?
Food Exchanges: Can you explain food exchanges?
Frozen Shoulder: Do my symptoms sound like frozen shoulder?
Fruit: What is the difference between canned and fresh fruits?
Fruit Juice: What can I drink instead of water?
Fruit Sugar: Which fruits would be a better choice for me to eat?
Glucose Test: My glucose tolerance test was at 105 - how high/low is that compared to acceptable levels?
Gluten: Should I be eating gluten free products?
HFCS: What's all the hype with High Fructose Corn Syrup?
High Blood Pressure: What should I order when eating out to limit sodium?
High Blood Sugar: My blood sugar levels have been running between 475 to 575.
High Cholesterol: In addition to having diabetes I have high cholesterol. What can I order?
Hunger:  What do you advise when I find myself, always, hungry and most of the time ravenous?
Margerine or Butter: Why unhealthy margarine instead of butter?
Nuts: What kind of nuts should I buy?
Olean: Where I can buy Olean and what brands of food have it?
Pre-Diabetes: What are Pre-Diabetes lifestyle changes?
Pre-Diabetes: Newly diagnosed w/ Pre-Diabetes... where do I start?
Pre-Diabetes: Do people with Pre-Diabetes have the same symptoms as those with Type 1 and Type 2?
Snacking: How do I avoid overeating when I'm bored?
Stevia: Are Stevia sweeteners safe for someone who has diabetes?
Sugar Alcohol: What is the difference between sugar and sugar alcohols?
Tomatoes: Will tomatoes cause an increase in blood sugar levels?
Type 2: What should I do if I've just been diagnosed with Type 2 Diabetes?
Weight Loss: How do I lose weight?
® is a program designed to help people with diabetes make better food choices. Our hope is that people consider the foods they consume and how they can burn them off with exercise for good health.
We embrace the guidelines put forth by the American Diabetes Association as well as the American Dietetic & American Heart Associations. This website is completely free and brought to you by volunteers in the health care field.
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