Food corporations are sneaky.
As we've grown more informed about the consequences of ingesting large amounts of sugar and artificial sweeteners, they've come up with new sweeteners that are just as detrimental - if not more so - to staying healthy and achieving our weight-loss goals.
One of these sweeteners is maltodextrin.
Maltodextrin a "complex carbohydrate" that...
- Can cause bloating and flatulence
- Scores a whopping 105-136 (out of 100) on the glycemic index
- Causes an immediate spike in your blood sugar
In fact, maltodextrin is so contrary to dropping pounds that it's actually included in many of the weight-gaining supplements favored by bodybuilders!
Maltodextrin is derived from corn, rice, or potatoes. Although it is technically a polysaccharide (a sugar formed by the combination of multiple sugars), it is officially classified as a carbohydrate. It is often found in processed foods, either as a fat-free sweetener or as a thickening agent in products like pudding and salad dressing.
So why is maltodextrin spread across so many health message boards? Well, it can be hugely helpful for bodybuilders and professional and performance athletes. Because maltodextrin is almost immediately digested by the body, ingesting it leads to a spike in blood-sugar levels and provides an instant jolt of energy that athletes can use to power through workouts. Additionally, maltodextrin can be used to enhance recovery after a particularly tough training session.
While we witness extraordinary athleticism when we watch the Olympics or if we happen to see body builders at the gym, it's safe to assume that most of us won't be training for the hurdles or a decathlon anytime soon. And for people who aren't hardcore athletes, there are two excellent reasons to avoid adding maltodextrin to your diet.
- Maltodextrin breaks the glycemic index. The glycemic index is a scale (0-100) that measures how quickly a particular food causes an increase in blood sugar. Glucose, the food against which all other foods are measured on the GI scale, has a score of 100. Maltodextrin, on the other hand, scores between 105-137, depending on the amount you use. That means that the carbs in maltodextrin are almost instantaneously converted into sugar that then enters the bloodstream. This isn't a problem - and may even be a benefit - for endurance athletes, or during a particularly strenuous workout, but using maltodextrin at other times almost ensures that it will be stored in your body as fat.
- You're probably already getting hidden maltodextrin in your diet. Since maltodextrin can be used as a thickening agent and as a "sugar-free" sweetener, chances are that unless you're eating an entirely natural, raw diet (including making your own salad dressing), you're already consuming some amount of maltodextrin. It even pops up in otherwise healthy foods, such as protein drinks. It's also used as a gluten alternative in gluten-free foods. Considering how quickly maltodextrin is stored in the body as fat, you should limit your consumption of it to as close to zero as possible.
Now that we plan to ditch the Maltodextrin, how do we know which sweeteners to stay away from? You can start my going to my complete guide on sweeteners, here . Trust me, after reading through my guide you won't be able to rid your pantry fast enough of those nasty insulin-spiking, toxic sweeteners that increase your risk of cardiovascular disease, obesity, and Type 2 Diabetes. But if you are someone that needs more guidance, such as done-for-you meal plans and shopping lists that can dramatically lower and combat blood sugar levels AND help you lose unwanted pounds that were brought on by abusing sweeteners in the first place, BEYONDbloodSugar may be the answer.
After seeing my mother suffer from Type 2 Diabetes, I created an eating plan that helped reverse the damage done by years of consuming artificial sweeteners and so-called "low-sugar" snacks. My plan decreased her blood sugar numbers back to a normal, healthy range so she could regain her spirit and energy levels. And what I want for all of you is to change your eating habits before you ever have to hear those 3 life-changing words from your doctor, "you have diabetes". BEYONDbloodSugar is more than a safe weight-loss plan that helps you manage blood sugar levels, it can be used as a preventative tool to decrease your risk of developing insulin resistance and obesity related illness before you ever even have to suffer the consequences.
It begins with being educated about toxic, "sneaky sweeteners" but it ends when you start taking charge of your health and weigh-loss goals, for good.