The latest frenzy over low carbing is exciting for those of us that have been low carbing for years… but it is also frustrating! Why? Because many new “low carb” products that large companies are putting out are NOT really low carb… yet they have a “low carb” label! Big companies like Coca-Cola and Pepsi are coming out with “low carb” colas that will contain high fructose corn syrup and have “half the carbs” of its normal cola.1 Big whoop! High fructose corn syrup is SUGAR!!! You CAN NOT have a product with sugar in these amounts and expect a low carb lifestyle to work!
Doubly frustrating is the number of people that will be fooled into thinking that they are doing a low carb diet, and actually won’t be living low carb! Then they will come back and say, “See, that low carbing doesn’t really work!” Sigh! The article1 on MSNBC about “new” Coke (“C2”) and the new Pepsi (“Edge”) says that they are adding Splenda® to the high fructose corn sryup… THEY ARE COMPLETELY CLUELESS! Why even bother to have a so-called “low carb” drink that ends up being 20 GRAMS of SUGAR CARBS! (I kid you not!)
This is the kind of thing that we are seeing in many local grocery stores as well… I saw “low carb” pasta recently that looked pretty exciting… until I turned it over and read the Nutrition Facts fine print… even after deducting fiber it was 19 grams of carbs per ounce! These are NOT low carb products! Yet folks are going into grocery stores and “blindly” buying hyped-up “low carb” products and think that they are getting truly low carb foods. Lora Ruffner has a great article in Low Carb Luxury about this issue this month as well! As she says, ” When you next head out for your local grocery to ‘pick up a few things,’ come with your very best defenses at the ready.”2
Seldom have I felt so frustrated about a situation. Here we are trying to get out the word on the benefits of the low carb lifestyle… and everyone seems to begin to “get it”… only to have “big food” come in… completely and totally clueless… and deceive folks with these bogus foods! PLEASE WATCH OUT! Be aware… read labels! And, even be careful reading the labels! Some manufacturers have begun artificially injecting fiber into foods to bump up the fiber count! If you have a food that has 4 grams of carbs after accounting for naturally occurring fiber, and then you artificially inject 4 grams of fiber into it… you do not “counter-act” the carbs… you STILL have a 4 grams of net carb food. But, if you then advertise that food as ZERO IMPACT CARBS… then the manufacturer has been, shall we say, “disingenuous!” We have to know our vendors, our manufacturers, and know who to trust on these issues! Stay alert, be aware! We will be following this trend and informing you about these issues!
Bill Bailey, Ph.D., MH, ND, CNHP
(Dr. Bailey can be reached at Healing Pathways)