Sugar Alcohols: In One End, Out the Other
Sugar alcohols—the secret sauce in sugar-free foods—are preferred by diabetics because they don’t cause a sudden increase in blood sugar level.
The CDC says the number of diabetics has more than doubled in the U.S. in the past 15 years. That, coupled with dieters trying to cut carbs, are two reasons sales of sugar-free foods sweetened by sugar alcohols are skyrocketing.
But sugar alcohols aren’t a silver bullet for dieters and diabetics. They can cause gastric distress and a laxative effect. And they can even increase blood sugar level when over-consumed.
Sugar alcohols pull water into the intestinal tissues, which promotes the laxative effect. For some people, that may just be loose stools. For others, it can cause a sudden urge to defecate—now. For still others, it can lead to gas.
The effect can be particularly strong for people who regularly abuse their GI tract with the over-processed, under-nourishing standard American diet. This diet inflames GI tissue. Inflammation attracts water. Add sugar alcohols to the diet, and you’re pulling even more water into the system, compounding the condition.
This is why so many diabetics and dieters are uncontrollably gassy. They rarely—if ever—have any idea that the sugar-free foods they depend on to maintain their blood sugar level or weight are actually the reason people keep sending them Gassy Greeting Cards.
The problems caused by sugar alcohols can affect everyone. Sugar alcohols naturally occur in fruits and vegetables. And they’re also in a large number of sugar-free foods that are not necessarily aimed a dieters or diabetics, including candies, gums, desserts, prepared foods, cough drops, and salad dressings.
My recommendation: Eat food packaged by nature, not by man. It will have more fiber, more water, more enzymes, more electrolytes, more vitamins, and more nutrients—stuff that helps rebuild the body.
We are made of food, air, water, and sunshine. The quality of our health directly reflects the quality of the resources we consume. Focus on consuming the highest quality food, air, water, and sunshine, and you’ll be on your way to restoring healthy digestive function.
And that’s not sugar coated.