Ask the Nutritionist
Q: If you are not a diabetic, do you recommend substituting Truvia or Splenda with sugar in large quantities, such as in recipes? They seem to upset my stomach.
Marlene, North Easton, Massachusetts
There is a bit of controversy with some artificial sweeteners and sugar, in general.
While we don't advocate excess consumption of sugar, if you are not diabetic it is okay to eat sugar every once in a while.
If you are trying to lose weight, you will not cut out too many calories by switching just the sugar in the product — it has only 15 calories per teaspoon. See if you can make the recipe healthier by replacing some of the sugar and fat with something more natural and less caloric, such as applesauce.
Both Truvia and Splenda have been approved by the FDA as safe for human consumption based on scientific research, but different people react differently to them.
Other forms of calorie-free sweeteners called sugar alcohols — such as xylitol, maltitol and erythritol — often upset people's stomachs. If you notice an upset stomach after eating Truvia or Splenda, steer clear of them.
Your body is likely not digesting these substances well, so over-consumption may lead to discomfort, bloating, diarrhea, and flatulence.
Add a little bit of regular sugar in your recipes and just eat mindfully, savoring each bite without overdoing it.