While the concept of ‘diabetic’ chocolate is thoughtful, it can actually do more harm than good.
When I was younger I mainly got given ‘diabetic’ chocolate, particularly at Christmas and Easter time and all I can remember is feeling left out and that it tastes horrible!
So from my own experience and research, lets look into why ‘diabetic’ or sugar free chocolate is not any better for you than normal chocolate.
What is ‘diabetic ‘ chocolate?
This is essentially when a product has very little carbohydrate or sugar in it, which makes it ‘appropriate’ for those living with diabetes.
These products were created to help people manage diabetes while allowing some room for chocolate and treats. However, research soon exposed the loop wholes in these products, including inaccurate health promises.
In fact, labelling a product as ‘diabetic’ is now against the law. This is because research has shown absolutely no benefit in consuming diabetic chocolate over normal chocolate, and showing it can actually cause more damage to the body.
Why is it detrimental?
Diabetic chocolate may be low in sugar, but it is still high in fat, calories and additives. Sugar is replaced with artificial sweeteners such as aspartame, which can have some nasty effects in the body.
The artificial sweeteners and additives can cause severe stomach upset, including bloating, nausea, vomiting and diarrhoea. Furthermore, additives can still actually cause blood sugar spikes and increase insulin resistance. The theory behind this states that artificial sweeteners closely resemble glucose, which confuses the body into thinking blood glucose is high, when in fact it is not. This process is linked to worsening insulin resistance.
Finally, it just doesn’t taste the same and can cause people living with diabetes to feel left out.
Opt for this instead
My simple advise is to just have normal chocolate and treats when you fancy them. Of course have chocolate on the occasion and use carb counting to keep your levels in range.
All products have the carb and sugar content listed on the packaging, so use it! Also have your treats while staying active. I like to go for a nice post-meal walk with family and friends to keep my levels balanced. It is possible to eat ‘like a normal person’ while living with diabetes, it just takes some extra time and planning.
Never let living with diabetes stop you from having fun, just be mindful and learn about your body. Tell the people around you what you need, whether thats asking them to walk with you, or simply educating them about what diabetics can eat (which is anything with the correct prep!).
Lastly, tell your family members to get you normal chocolate on special occasions. I am sure they would much rather get you something you like! 🙂
Thank you for reading Is ‘diabetic chocolate’ really healthier? I hope you found this useful and informative! Be sure to subscribe and follow me on Instagram!