Allulose

Allulose (a rare sugar also known as D-psicose) is one of many different sugars that exists in nature. It was identified in wheat over 70 years ago and is present in very small quantities in certain fruits such as figs and raisins as well as in foods like caramel sauce, maple syrup and brown sugar.

Like glucose and fructose, allulose is a monosaccharide, or single sugar. In contrast, table sugar, also known as sucrose, is a disaccharide made of glucose and fructose joined together.

In fact, allulose has the same chemical formula as fructose, but is arranged differently. This difference in structure prevents your body from processing allulose the way it processes fructose.

allulose2.jpg

Manufacturers produce allulose for commercial use by using enzymes to convert fructose from corn and other plants into allulose.


Allulose is 70% as sweet as sugar and so is often combined with other sweeteners in foods (we blend it with monk fruit!).

We love Allulose because it offers unique benefits:

  • Very low in calories (only 1/10 the calories of table sugar) because it is not metabolized (1, 2)

  • Does not raise blood glucose or insulin levels in healthy individuals or when consumed by people with type 2 diabetes (3, 4, 5)

  • Modestly reduces post-meal glycemic response in people with type 2 diabetes, prediabetes, and with healthy blood glucose when consumed in combination with other carbohydrates (6, 7, 8)

  • Digestively tolerated in healthy adults at 30 grams per day (9, 10)

  • Does not cause tooth decay (11)

  • Behaves like sugar when baked (caramelization and browning; adds bulk and texture; high affinity for water makes baked goods soft and moist)

  • Blends well with other sweeteners

  • Allulose is generally recognized as safe (GRN 400 and 498) by the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for use in foods and beverages, which means it is safe for people of all ages to consume (12)


monk fruit

The monk fruit is also known as luo han guo or “Buddha fruit.” It’s a small, round fruit that grows on lush vines in small farms in the sub-tropical climate of Asian hillsides.

It’s Chinese name reveals its history: “Luo Han” is actually an order of Buddhist monks who first cultivated the fruit nearly 800 years ago and “Guo” is a shortened version of the Chinese word for “fruit”. The fruit has been used for centuries in traditional Chinese medicine.

Monk fruit sweetener is created by removing the seeds and skin of the fruit and crushing it to collect the juice, which is then dried into a concentrated powder.


Monk fruit gets its intense sweetness from unique antioxidants called mogrosides. During processing, mogrosides are separated from the fresh-pressed juice. This extract is 100–250 times sweeter than table sugar, so monk fruit is often mixed with other natural products, like allulose, to reduce the intensity of the sweetness.

Unlike many non-nutritive sweeteners which can cause gas, bloating, or allergic reactions, monk fruit sweetener has no known side effects.


For us, monk fruit was the no-brainer choice to combine with our allulose because its comes with many benefits:

  1. Safe for diabetes

    Monk fruit gets its sweetness from natural compounds called mogrosides. It’s generally safe for those with diabetes because it doesn’t increase blood sugars (13, 14, 15)

  2. Promotes weight loss

    Monk fruit has no calories, carbs, or fat, so it’s a great option for anyone watching their weight.

  3. Anti-inflammatory properties

    According to a 2011 study, monk fruit has been used in China for centuries to make hot drinks that relieve sore throats and reduce phlegm. The fruit’s mogrosides are said to be anti-inflammatory, and may help prevent cancer and keep blood sugar levels stable.

  4. No known side effects

    Unlike many non-nutritive sweeteners which can cause gas, bloating, or allergic reactions, monk fruit sweetener has no known side effects.

  5. Safe to consume

    The Food and Drug Administration has deemed monk fruit “generally recognized as safe (GRAS)” for everyone (including pregnant women and children).


References

  1. Atiee GJ et al. An open-label, single-dose, nonrandomized microtracer study to determine the mass balance of orally administered, 14C-labeled sweetener product with 15 g sweetener in healthy adult subjects. 2015.

  2. Iida et al 2010. Failure of D-psicose absorbed in the small intestine to metabolize into energy and its low large intestinal fermentability in humans. Metabolism 2010; 59(2):206-14.

  3. Kendall C, Wolever T, Vuksan V, et al. Comparison of glycemic responses elicited by 25g glucose, 25g allulose. Glycemia Consulting Inc. Toronto, ON, Canada. 2014.

  4. Wolever T, Jenkins AJ. A Randomized, Controlled, Crossover Study to Assess the Effects of a Sweetener on Postprandial Glucose and Insulin Excursions in Healthy Subjects. Glycemic Index Labs. Toronto, ON, Canada. 2015.

  5. Wolever T, Jenkins AJ. A Randomized, Controlled, Crossover Study to Assess the Effects of a Sweetener on Postprandial Glucose and Insulin Excursions in Healthy Subjects. Glycemic Index Labs. Toronto, ON, Canada. 2015.

  6. Noronha et al. Effect of Small Doses of Fructose and Allulose on Postprandial Glucose Metabolism in Type 2 Diabetes: A Double-blind, Randomized, Controlled, Acute Feeding Equivalence Trial. Diabetes, Obesity, and Metabolism 2018; 1-10.

  7. Hayashi et al. Study on the postprandial blood glucose suppression effect of D-psicose in borderline diabetes and the safety of long-term ingestion by normal human subjects. Biosci Biotechnol Biochem 2010; 74(3):510-9.

  8. Iida et al. Acute D-psicose administration decreases the glycemic responses to an oral maltodextrin tolerance test in normal adults. J Nutr Sci Vitaminol (Tokyo) 2008; 54(6):511-4.

  9. Shanahan F. A randomized, placebo-controlled, double blind, parallel group designed to examine the gastrointestinal tolerability of 15 grams per day and 30 grams per day of allulose, delivered in a beverage, in healthy adults for a period of 12 weeks. Atlantia Food Clinical Trials, Cork, Ireland. 2018.

  10. Iida et al. Estimation of Maximum No-effect Level of D-Psicose in Causing Diarrhea in Human Subjects. Journal of the Japanese Council for Advanced Food Ingredients Research 2007; 10(1):15-19.

  11. Hasturk H. A clinical study on the effect of allulose, a low-calorie sugar, on in vivo dental plaque pH. Forsyth Institute. Boston, MA, USA. 2018.

  12. FDA: U.S. Food and Drug Administration GRAS Notices. GRN No. 400 (2012)

  13. Effect of a Siraitia grosvenori extract containing mogrosides on the cellular immune system of type 1 diabetes mellitus mice.

  14. Antioxidant effect of mogrosides against oxidative stress induced by palmitic acid in mouse insulinoma NIT-1 cells

  15. Mogrosides extract from Siraitia grosvenori scavenges free radicals in vitro and lowers oxidative stress, serum glucose, and lipid levels in alloxan-induced diabetic mice.