From Sri Lanka:
My question is regarding nutritional supplements given for diabetes. Almost all the nutritional powders for diabetes contain maltodextrin. How safe is this? If carbohydrate content of the product is the only criteria, what is the maximum amount of carbohydrate a nutritional powder for diabetes can have?
You have to be concerned about all types of carbohydrates. Some carbohydrates, although not glucose, may be turned into glucose. Specifically, maltose is a disaccharide that is formed by two glucose molecules bound together. Maltose is used as a sweetener and although it is not usual sucrose (a disaccharide made up of glucose joined to fructose and is the usual sugar from sugar cane or sugar beets), it will be broken down in the body to glucose, the sugar elevated in diabetes. Here, the claim of sugar-free is misleading and can actually lead to elevated glucose levels if eaten in substantial amounts. You ask a good question. If this leaves you frustrated, remember that it is portion size that is most important and not the absolute elimination of all sugars that is important.
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