Swerve & Carbs?


(Kathy) #1

I have a curious question. First of all, my family (5 of us) have been doing Keto since 12/23/16. We have all had wonderful success! We have no intentions of doing a different WOE because we feel great, have lost weight, have stabilized our A1C numbers, etc.

When watching a YouTube yesterday showing a “keto ice cream/gelato”, I decided to try the recipe. It turned out delicious! The problem was AFTER we tried it, I started wondering what the macros were. The entire recipe (small one) called for 1/3 cup of Swerve Confectioners (which I had in my cabinet, but which I had not used in this amount before). When I pulled up the nutritional information, I was surprised to see that although it had 0 calories per teaspoon, it had 3 carbs! So, 1/3 cup would be 48 carbs! So, divided by 3 people it was 16 carbs each! =8-O

My question is this: Since this is a recommended sweetener to use for Keto lifestyle, why does it have so many carbs? Are the carbs “different” in some way? I have seen many recipes using this swerve and other types of sweeteners that have carbs, co I’m a little confused. Does anyone know the answer? Should I just throw away my Swerve? Help!

(LJ) #2

Swerve is erythritol, a sugar alcohol, that’s typically not counted in your net carbs.

Everyone seems to be affected differently by sweeteners but this is one of the best tolerated (how much you enjoy the cooling effect is up to you.)

No need to worry. KCKO!

(Karen Parrott) #3

I track total carbs and stopped artificial sweetener. For me, weight maintenance is easier with both total carbs and without the sweet on my palate.

I would count total carbs and see how it works for you.

(Amy Davis) #4

Hey Kathy,
I am a dietitian and I actually work for Swerve Sweetener. It is true that Swerve contains carbs, but these carbs are coming from the sugar alcohol Erythritol, which is not absorbed by the body (similar to how fiber is not absorbed). Therefore, you would not “count” these carbs towards your total carb intake for the day. That’s why keto bloggers love us so much :slight_smile: Have you ever visited our website? We have a ton of recipes and they all provide nutrition info and net carb counts! Here is a link to our recipes: recipes

(Mike Glasbrener) #5

As mention before. Everyone’s mileage varies with sugar alcohols. Some can consume them w/o any problem and some get an insulin and/or a blood sugar response. Either of these slows or stops the benefits of a keto way of living. I’m sure the board would love to see independent peer reviewed studies of your product looking at T2 diabetics response to these blood markers after consumption over a few hours. Since testing costs are quite manageable and it’s not a drug I wouldn’t think it should be too costly to do.

(Amy Davis) #6

Hey Mike, you are absolutely correct - individual response will vary when it comes to digestion and absorption of sugar alcohols, as with any food. You are also correct to say that research is of paramount importance when people, especially those with diabetes, are making informed decisions about what foods to eat. We conducted a study a few years back to test blood sugar response after consuming Swerve, sugar, and an artificial sweetener. We found that Swerve did not affect blood glucose levels. You can see the study summarized on this page of our website.

(Ethan) #7

MHave you conducted any studies on insulin response? Most of us with absurdly high insulin resistance find it much more meaningful to set a goal for minimal insulin response as opposed to blood glucose response. For us, a food may or may not produce much glucose response, but the massive insulin response could kick us out if ketosis.

Edit: read the link and saw you did test insulin. Which artificial seeetener is the one in the study you compared against?

(Mike Glasbrener) #8

Thank you so much for the link. The study is certainly a start. It seems that it is in contrast to anecdotal data by people on this board and the experience of the professionals at IDM. It would be nice to understand the difference. It could be that the 15 healthy people in the study have accidentally excluded people with metabolic syndrome and are therefore more likely not to have an insulin response to sugar alcohols. Citing that limited study as evidence that Strevia does not cause an insulin response in anyone, especially people with metabolic syndrome and T2 diabetes, is tenuous at best. Too many people will just listen and believe w/o doing research. The best way is to try life w/o any sweeteners for a few weeks then add one in for a few days, if “needed”, and see if it stall or slows your weight loss. Some might be fine, most will not according to what I’ve heard by Megan Ramos, the head of the clinical side of IDM.

(Regina M.) #9

Did you hear that in person or is there a link somewhere? I have heard her say that it can cause some people problems with cravings, but I haven’t seen where she say it will cause most people to stall. Stevia has naturalized in my backyard, so it’s very convenient.

(Mike Glasbrener) #10

In multiple podcasts and specifically the new 2KD podcast released Sunday. It could be you’re fine. My only point is do due diligence and your own n=1 experiment. The one study done is certainly not comprehensive nor conclusive and is in contrast to the experience of other professionals.

(Amy Davis) #11

Hey Ethan, the artificial sweetener we tested was Splenda.

(Amy Davis) #12

Hey Mike, it’s my pleasure! Sure, the study has it’s limitations with such a small sample size. It’s the best we could do as a small company with only 6 full time employees. I will say we have also received hundreds of subjective, but helpful, accounts of diabetics or people following keto that test blood sugar after consuming Swerve and have no response. That being said, we also have had individuals say they do get a response. This is rare, but every once in a while it happens. But as we discussed before, everyone is different, and Swerve is not for everyone. It’s simply a valuable tool in the toolbox for those trying to live a healthier lifestyle.

(Mike Glasbrener) #13

I think we’re mostly in agreement about it helps some live with a sweet tooth while hindering others. My point is it’s clear that some unknown but clearly not rare occurances of T2 diabetics and people with metabolic syndrome have problems with it. The study and anecdotal data do not dispute this. Stevia is unquestionably better than sugar. However, before people in this community start using it as a valuable tool they should evaluate it to determine their own personal response. Otherwise while working hard on other dietary compliance issues they could be hindering themselves with something they wouldn’t think to question.

(Sydni Weeks) #14

So can you tell me if we count swerve or not? I am kinda new to Keto and made some fat bombs and was shocked when I figured out the carbs :scream:

(Kristine Sixx Wilscam) #15

Okay, I have a question about using swerve as a T1 diabetic. I have been doing the keto diet for a few weeks and I don’t lose the weight like everyone else that is doing it with me, mine is slower. I would like to know if there have been any studies on the effects of swerve and blood glucose levels for T1’s. I know the studies show that there is no effect for T2’s but I do notice an effect if there is a large amount of Serve in what I am eating. Granted they do not jump high like sugar but they are elevated. I have to count every carb, not net carbs, as every carb no matter what effects my blood sugar. This makes it very difficult to stick to the keto diet at times as what may be 1 net carb for a person may be 15-20 carbs for me depending. I contribute this to my slower weight loss as I HAVE to take insulin no matter what and when the blood sugars are elevated it means more insulin. It gets frustrating at times and I feel like giving up because everyone else is losing tons of weight and I’m losing 5 lbs or so. If anyone out there is a type 1 and has experience on Keto I would love to know how it works for you etc. I am in the process of finding a new endocrinologist to answer my questions, hopefully, due to mine moving away. Just curious as I really want to be successful at this weight loss and feeling better!