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Sugar alcohols

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Old 06-13-18, 03:06 AM
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coffeesnob
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Sugar alcohols

Does anyone know a bit about sugar alcohols. I know they are used for artificial sweetners. What baffles me is that they tend to make me really sleepy, perhaps worse than real sugar. I am not talking about a lot of it sometimes 1 protein bar with 5 grams makes me like I can't pedal anymore...
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Old 06-13-18, 07:04 AM
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Makes me have to move my bowels worse than a cup of expresso.

I try to avoid them. Some energy bars are loaded with them.
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Old 06-13-18, 04:03 PM
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I had one at our halway point last week. I could hardly pedal when we started back up. I was if I had been drugged.
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Old 06-14-18, 08:09 AM
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Originally Posted by TimothyH View Post
Makes me have to move my bowels worse than a cup of expresso.

I try to avoid them. Some energy bars are loaded with them.
^^ Same here.

I haven't researched them all in-depth, but most side effects are related to GI distress. This could be the first I've heard of them making someone sleepy.
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Old 06-14-18, 07:10 PM
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I haven't noticed any differences between the various sugars and sugar alcohols in my energy bars, electrolyte drinks and protein supplements. I'm pretty sensitive to blood sugar changes and GI distress, but can't recall any problems the past year that I'd attribute to those products.

Thinking back, all of my health issues over the past year have turned out to be due to other underlying factors -- mainly a wonky thyroid. I'd overlooked the lump in my throat until I was scheduled for shoulder surgery last month and the anesthesiologist checked the way the enlarged thyroid had constricted and deformed my trachea. He ordered me to get myself to a specialist pronto before even thinking about surgery.

So it's possible any transient issues I've noticed with my health over the past year had less to do with tweaking my diet and more to do with other neglected health issues.

Another factor for me in bouts with exhaustion are mostly due to ignoring the fact that I'm 60 now and can't get by with just 2-5 hours of sleep anymore. For years I was so accustomed to getting by with little sleep and can't do that with the level of physical stress I'm placing on my body the past year by riding my bike farther and faster over more difficult terrain.

I've been making more brief notes about little daily things: how I felt; what was wrong, if anything; what I'd had to eat and drink; how much I'd slept and how well; etc. I also take notes about whether I feel better after a ride or workout even when I felt sluggish or miserable before exercise; or whether the workout made me feel worse. Helps reduce the subjectivity and selective memory when it's written down.
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Old 06-15-18, 12:19 PM
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Originally Posted by coffeesnob View Post
Does anyone know a bit about sugar alcohols. I know they are used for artificial sweetners. What baffles me is that they tend to make me really sleepy, perhaps worse than real sugar. I am not talking about a lot of it sometimes 1 protein bar with 5 grams makes me like I can't pedal anymore...
Just some info .....
...... https://breakingmuscle.com/healthy-e...sugar-alcohols
https://www.thehealthyhomeeconomist....er-gut-health/

Definitely strange that the sleepiness happens. GI issues for sure.
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Old 06-17-18, 06:25 PM
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I avoid artificial sweeteners like a plague,
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Old 06-18-18, 12:52 AM
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Sugar alcohols aren't artificial sweeteners, not in the sense that they're created only in the lab. They're mostly converted from "natural" sugars and mannitol occurs naturally in many plants.
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Old 06-18-18, 09:57 AM
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Originally Posted by wolfchild View Post
I avoid artificial sweeteners like a plague,
Serious quetion, why?
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Old 06-18-18, 05:18 PM
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Originally Posted by redlude97 View Post
Serious quetion, why?
Why ??....because artificial sweeteners do absolutely nothing positive for the human body. They are just chemicals which your body can't use for anything. Some artificial sweeteners are also very bad for your gut bacteria. Sugar can be used for energy, artificial sweeteners can't....It's also a personal preference, I don't really crave sweet foods. I use sugar strictly as fuel and not to satisfy my sweet tooth.
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Old 06-19-18, 11:03 AM
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Originally Posted by OldTryGuy View Post
Just some info .....
...... https://breakingmuscle.com/healthy-e...sugar-alcohols
https://www.thehealthyhomeeconomist....er-gut-health/

Definitely strange that the sleepiness happens. GI issues for sure.
and all this time I thought my sugar free mints were good for me. Thanks
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Old 07-03-18, 02:49 PM
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They raise my blood sugar as much or more than regular sugar. In larger amounts they upset my stomach. So I give them a big thumbs down.

However there are several different molecules that get clumped together as sugar alcohols on the nutrition panel, and they're not supposed to have the same effects. So someone who's more interested in using these products should look into the question a more deeply than I care to.
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Old 07-03-18, 06:40 PM
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Zap my brain and make me feel jittery and awful. Avoid like the plague for me. Don't know of any research though.
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Old 07-09-18, 05:05 PM
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When I used them I became impotent and grew a nose on the back of my head.
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Old 07-10-18, 12:02 PM
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Originally Posted by coffeesnob View Post
Does anyone know a bit about sugar alcohols. I know they are used for artificial sweetners. What baffles me is that they tend to make me really sleepy, perhaps worse than real sugar. I am not talking about a lot of it sometimes 1 protein bar with 5 grams makes me like I can't pedal anymore...
My guess is that the problem is that the extremely low glycemic index of sugar alcohols means that a protein bar is not an energy bar. Your blood sugar is dropping out from something else you ate earlier or just from exercise while not having any carbs for a long time. So it's nothing to do with what you did eat, but rather what you did not eat, i.e. ordinary carbs. Meanwhile, the protein is sucking up your energy for digestion. Try a Clif bar or a Luna bar or something like that instead of a protein bar.

I've been using a sports drink product called Hammer HEED. The ingredients are mostly maltodextrin and xylitol (a sugar alcohol). I've been using it for over 20 years with never a problem, so IME the gut thing is nonsense, the usual internet scare that someone can make money off. What's great about HEED is that the xylitol has totally ended my problems with tooth decay which I had with other sports drink products, which contained only ordinary sugars.
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Old 07-22-18, 11:07 AM
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Not everyone has the same reaction, but to say the gut thing is nonsense counters what others have experienced and what we can document as side effects. For me, MY experience, is that occasional consumption is not a real big deal, but if I exceed the magic threshold, I have the most noxious, dense, horrid, stick-to-the-walls, paint-color-changing, gag-worthy farts - and they are expansive, danged near room-filling. Stop the sugar alcohols, the farts go away. In general, now, I avoid them as I try to do any artificial sweeteners (I fail at that with my diet soda thing).
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Old 07-22-18, 11:20 AM
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I can't get to the point where sugar alcohols will mess with my digestive tract-- I simply can't stand the taste/aftertaste. Doesn't matter what it's in or how they try to hide it, I can taste it. And I don't like it. In moderation, absolutely nothing wrong with good old sugar.
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Old 07-23-18, 01:21 AM
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I've been trying Truvia in single serving packets, just out of curiosity. It's stevia and erythritol. Texture and flavor are nearly identical to sugar. Can't say I notice any difference. No issues with blood sugar or GI upset.

But it's expensive compared with sugar so I probably wouldn't use it regularly until I was training for something and motivated to trim my few remaining pounds of belly fat.
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