If you had a maximum limit (for instance 50 grams per day or so) of sugar consumption, which sources would you use? I mean if you had to choose between having two or three pieces of fruit (apple, orange, etc) or having instead the equivalent amount of sugar in the form of sucrose or glucose, what would be your choice? I do not have weight nor metabolic problems, and I am not using any sodas or anything else having HFCS. I do have some fruit (orange, apples or bananas) daily. If I were to switch to having coffee or tea sweetened with sucrose or glucose instead of fruits, I would keep constant my sugar intake, lose the nutrients from fruits (fiber and vitamins) and gain the benefit of a presumably more healthy sugar (sucrose or glucose) rather than fructose. What would you do? What would be the benefits and problems related to that change?
100% glucose is ideal, preferably in the form of a slow-digesting starch.
I try to keep fructose under 5 grams a day. It's a lot harder than you'd think.
Welp. Sucrose is 50 percent glucose and 50 percent fructose, so, in essence, you'd just be splitting those two sugars if you ate sucrose. My pick, and I'd guess the pick of most people here, would be glucose.
I think that I have a pretty big problem with fructose. Not only does fructose stall weight loss by triggering triglyceride production, but it also messes with leptin levels (read here, perhaps: http://paleopepper.com/2011/02/curing-physiological-drivers-of-binge-eating-with-a-paleo-diet/ or here: http://wholehealthsource.blogspot.com/2008/12/leptin-resistance-and-sugar.html). It's a giant No on my list, so glucose it would be. I don't consider nutrients from fruit to be particularly important. I get plenty of nutrients from eggs and from meat, and if I do in fact "need" antioxidants, I get plenty of those from my leafy greens.
There is also this link which I found very helpful. It's for people with fructose intolerance which explains all different kinds of sugars. If it says not tolerated that means that there is fructose in it. http://www.bu.edu/aldolase/HFI/treatment/sugar_table.htm
Actually, I was also wondering whether it's OK to use tapioca syrup as a sweetener, since tapioca is considered a safe starch by some. From what I could find tapioca syrup has zero fructose, and contains glucose and maltose. Any thoughts?
Xylitol. Lower in total calories than regular sugars, just as sweet as sucrose w/o an aftertaste (though it does have a slight cooling sensation, like other sugar alcohols). Relatively minimal glycemic response. Peer reviewed evidence shows that it's fantastic for teeth - is not fermentable by plaque bacteria, actively reduces plaque by inhibiting production of sticky polysaccharides, alkalinizes saliva, promotes secretion of saliva and minerals in saliva, promotes remineralization of dentin and enamel, changes the balance of the oral microflora towards non-cariogenic species, etc etc. It acts as a probiotic, being converted into short-chain fatty acids in the colon. Preliminary evidence shows that it promotes remineralization of bone and retards osteoporosis. Retards all types of biofilms by the same mechanism by which it reduces plaque... but absorption to the bloodstream is likely minimal or nonexistent, so this would only be a topical effect. Anyway, I'm rambling now - but i've yet to find a better sweetener to use - if you must.
erythritol is the least problematic of the sugar alcohols because it is absorbed in the small intestine and excreted unchanged in the urine. Xylitol is something I use regularly as well and unless you really binge on it, you will not have diarrhea. I got carried away with it one day and had just a bit of softening of the stool, that's it. Both are fine choices.
I try to avoid sweet tasting things to keep my cravings down... but I have recently started using small amounts of stevia every now and again. A bit metallic if I use too much. You really need TINY amounts with it!
I have used xylitol but it seems to cause gastric upsets. (Wood alcohols do this in some people. So use the xylitol in moderation at the beginning, as Carisa mentioned.)
This is an important post especially this time of the year. As many people are finding out, VLCing it AND going to the gym/crossfitting/HIIT/HIT/lifting weights do not go well together. Fructose, when consumed does very little for you as it can only recharge liver glycogen levels but not muscle. Unfortunately sucrose and therefore cake/candy/bagels/white bread/etc are 50% fructose.
Certain people (see above) do NEED carbohydrates that enter the body as glucose. Other than sweet potatoes, other caloric dense foods that fit this bill are white rice and white potatoes.