T Nation

Sugar Alcohols

Does anyone know why they use sugar alcohols in MRP bars (Detour) and how they differ from regular sugar, sucralose, or aspartame?

Oh yeah, one more thing BIOTEST PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE BRING BACK GROW! BARS.

Thanks.

FatSensei

Sugar alcohols provide as much sweetness as sugar but only half the calories. They are derived from carbohydrates. Aspartame and sucrolose are artificial sweeteners.
http://www.atkins.com/Archive/2004/7/16-927112.html has more details.

It’s a marketing ploy, so they can say it contains less carbs than it really does. The average person doesn’t know any better, so they believe that all these bars are low carb (or meeting label claims), when in reality, they are bold-faced liars!

[quote]fatsensei wrote:
Does anyone know why they use sugar alcohols in MRP bars (Detour) and how they differ from regular sugar, sucralose, or aspartame?

Oh yeah, one more thing BIOTEST PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE BRING BACK GROW! BARS.

Thanks.

FatSensei[/quote]

They use them because they technically aren’t “sugars” and thus they can keep the amount of sugar low on the nutritional label. The benefit being that these compounds are still “sweet.” However, when adding more than a few grams in to the product, most people will experience diarrhea and/or stomach cramps due to the osmotic effect of these molecules. In other words, they tend to pull water towards where they are and if that’s in your bowels, it’s not a very fun thing. Keep in mind that sugar alcohols still have a caloric value. I honestly don’t know why other companies put them into their products. I would assume that it’s many times cheaper than sucralose and it allows them a much larger profit margin.

I remember about 3 or 4 years ago I had eaten 4 nutritional bars just before a date that I was running late for and if I can recall correctly, there was something like 17 grams of mannitol per bar and well, let’s just say that was the worst date ever! :slight_smile: