Sugar is something you should not eat when eating LCHF. The sweet tooth usually disappears after a short time, and you become more sensitive to sweet things. The sweet things you used to eat and think were good suddenly taste sweet and tasteless.
Suppose you have been used to eating or drinking products sweetened with sweeteners. Because you may find it difficult to get rid of the sweet tooth, and the habit of making everything taste sweet is also difficult to break. In that case, it is best to stop this completely when you start LCHF.
The best thing to do when starting LCHF is to give up diet soda altogether.
Sometimes you want sweeteners for desserts, and it can be good to use a sweetener. There are a few sweeteners that are usually recommended among those who eat LCHF. These are:
Stevia – concentrated Stevia is made from a plant and is not based on chemicals. It is not considered to have any effect on blood sugar. Some people find the taste of Stevia a little strange, and others think it’s just fine. Stevia in this form is several hundred times sweeter than sugar. It can be ordered online or sometimes purchased in health food stores.
Steviol glycosides (E960) are available in grocery stores called sweet straw, bakery, and the like. They usually consist of Erythritol and Stevia in various mixtures. Read carefully on the packaging, and try it out. A warning is issued for those mixtures that contain anything other than Erythritol.
Erythritol, so-called sugar alcohol. Erythritol consists of carbohydrates that are not absorbed by the body. Erythritol is found naturally in pears, melons and mushrooms, among others. They can be bought in supermarkets and health food stores. However, if you eat too much sugar alcohol, you can get unwanted side effects such as stomach aches and diarrhoea.
Which kind of sweetener to buy?
There is a jungle of different sweeteners in the shops, and it is sometimes difficult to know which is which. Stevia is used liberally in mixtures with other types of sweeteners and even sugar, which means you need to know what’s in it. Please remember to read the ingredients list if you are unsure what you are buying. Also, look for how sweet it is about regular sugar, so you know how much to use.
Here are some good, LCHF-friendly sweeteners:
– ICA Sweetener contains Erythritol and a small number of steviol glycosides.
– Sukrin/Sweet consists of Erythritol and is about as sweet as sugar
– Sukrin Melis is an icing sugar-like sweetener containing erythritol and steviol glycosides.
– Sukrin+ is a mixture of erythritol and steviol glycosides and is twice as sweet as sugar.
Beware of these when eating LCHF:
Here are some examples of products that are easy to buy, thinking they are LCHF-friendly because they are labelled with Stevia:
- Stevia Sugar – a mixture of regular granulated sugar and steviol glycosides.
- Canderel Green – a mixture of maltodextrin and steviol glycosides. Maltodextrin is pure starch that is quickly absorbed by the body.
In general, avoid all sweeteners that contain any of the following:
- Sucralose (E955) – is made from ordinary sugar, where part of the sugar molecule has been replaced by chlorine. It breaks down very slowly in nature, and there are concerns that fish and other animals may be affected.
- Aspartame (E951) – used in many light products and many traditional sweeteners available in supermarkets. It is controversial, and some say it can cause cancer and nerve damage to the brain.
- K-acesulfame (E950) – often used with aspartame in light products.
- Saccharin (E954) – often used in sweetening tablets for tea and coffee.
Coconut sugar, agave syrup and other natural sweeteners
Coconut sugar, agave syrup and palm syrup are often mentioned as natural sweeteners because they have a low GI. Avoid using these as they contain high levels of fructose. Fructose is not good for the body as it causes extra fat production in the liver. The only natural sweetener is honey. However, honey affects the body similarly to regular sugar, so it should be avoided in an LCHF diet.