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Old 05-01-2007, 08:21 PM   #1
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Best tasting coffee sweetener?

My husband (Atkins OWL, still very low on the ladder) likes a sweet taste in his coffee, but doesn't like the off-flavors he finds with Splenda or stevia powder. Cream in coffee gives him an upset stomach. Coconut oil didn't work for him, either. And he doesn't like flavors in his coffee, as in syrups or flavored coffees. He just likes the clean taste of coffee with sugar, preferably raw sugar -- he likes natural, whole foods.

He's trying to get used to powdered Splenda currently. But guess what, he had a craving for sweets tonight, for the first time in over a month. We didn't think anything of it. And then I just read on these boards somewhere that Splenda can give you a craving for sweets! Yikes!

I've been reading through this forum today and I'm just amazed at all the sweeteners that exist, and all the knowledge that the posters here have!

Help, anybody, what do you recommend? He's willing to try combos, but the scope and variety is just baffling! Of course, every product sales listing says it tastes great. Please share your knowledge!!

Thanks!
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Old 05-01-2007, 08:52 PM   #2
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Vesna, how much coffee does he drink in 1 day?
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Old 05-02-2007, 05:14 AM   #3
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Two to five cups. If it were just one, I might be inclined to say, just use a little real sugar. But sugar carbs really add up with multiple cups. Not to mention -- he doesn't want to start the day with an insulin spike.

But now I read that the maltodextrin filler in powdered Splenda can spike insulin, too.

He's been "toughing it out" with black coffee since March. One adjustment that we did make was to improve the quality of the coffee we bought. On the theory that if the coffee tastes better in the first place, it doesn't need to hide behind sugar, etc.m to taste good. That did improve the black coffee experience. Not to mention giving us the final push to buy more fair trade, environmentally conscious, good stuff.

He just bought a box of Splenda on Monday, to try in coffee and also because I wanted to try making cocoa bark.

BTW, I drink about the same amount of coffee. I used to use cream and sugar; now I use cream. I was lucky in that my taste adjusted very quickly.

Last edited by weasel!; 05-02-2007 at 05:26 AM..
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Old 05-02-2007, 06:15 AM   #4
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In my coffee I use a sweetener called NectaSweet. I like it because it is a tablet--no fillers and with the strength I bought it sweetens like 4 tsp sugar so 1 tablet is good in my coffee. It is saccharin and I was able to find it in my local supermarket Kroger. 1 bottle has lasted me a very long time! I hope he finds something that he likes! I think it will just be trial and error since there are so many choices out there. Good luck!!
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Old 05-02-2007, 07:18 AM   #5
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My mom uses NectaSweet- just check the label because it comes in different strengths from 1/4 grain to 1 grain. The bigger the number, the more sweetening power it has
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Old 05-02-2007, 08:01 AM   #6
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DaVinci makes a sugarfree simple syrup - that might be worth a try - no maltodextrin fillers and no flavors, just sweetness. You can buy it at Netrition I believe.
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Old 05-02-2007, 08:07 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by weasel! View Post
Two to five cups.
I was going to suggest DiabetiSweet white if he only had a couple of cups per day but depending on how sweet he likes it 5 cups worth may be too much isomalt for him to tolorate.
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Old 05-02-2007, 08:13 AM   #8
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Dawn, Dottie, thanks for your suggestion!

I looked up Necta Sweet and found that it is saccharin. Why would Necta Sweet be better to use than Sweet'N Low, which is also saccharin? Sweet'N Low contains dextrose filler -- is that the reason?

Is it dextrose that gives Sweet'N Low that horrible aftertaste?

If not, what would be the reason(s) to avoid fillers?

Thanks again!
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Old 05-02-2007, 08:30 AM   #9
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Kevinpa,

Fascinating! I just read this on Netrition's isomalt page, following your post:

Quote:
Isomalt, like all polyols, is a low digestible carbohydrate which is only partially digested in the intestines. In the lower part of the intestinal tract, some of the non-absorbed portion is metabolized by colonic bacteria. These normal physiologic processes, which may sometimes in some people cause softer stools or more intestinal gas than usual, are similar to how the body responds to high-fiber foods, beans and prunes.

A person’s response to low digestible carbohydrates, including isomalt, varies depending on the individual and factors such as one’s total diet, how much and when this type of carbohydrate is consumed. The few people who might be sensitive usually have no problem if they start with small portions and gradually increase their consumption of low digestible carbohydrates."
It might be worth a try, because it says "a small number of people," and because my husband tolerates beans very well.

Thanks for the info!
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Old 05-02-2007, 08:50 AM   #10
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Charski, thanks for the tip. I checked out Netrition's page on DaVinci syrups and found that their simple syrup contains:

Quote:
Water, Cellulose Gum, Sucralose (Splenda Brand), Citric Acid, Sodium Benzoate (to preserve flavor quality)
My questions: Wouldn't this Splenda contain the same ingredients, including maltodextrin, as the powdered Splenda? Or is that just a filler for the dry version? Is it maltodextrin that gives powdered Splenda its sour off-taste?

Does pure sucralose really taste different from powdered Splenda? And if so, then does that mean that something like Sweetzfree might be a good option?

We were hesitating on investing in a bottle of Sweetzfree until we find out more. It's $18 for 1 oz, but if you like it, it's a good value. It equals 24 cups of sugar! (1/4 teaspoon = 1 cup sugar!!!!) But what if it just tastes the same as a packet of Splenda? In that case, if you don't like powdered Splenda, then there would be no point in getting Sweetzfree, or DaVinci Simple Syrup, for that matter.

Thanks for any clarification you can provide!
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Old 05-02-2007, 09:26 AM   #11
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Has he tried just coconut milk in his coffee? I don't even need any sweetener when I do this. Sometimes I put a cinnamon stick in my cup as well.
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Old 05-02-2007, 09:44 AM   #12
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I went to Target today, and I saw something I have not heard of. Flavored Splenda for coffee. I'm not a coffee drinker, but thought this might help you guys out. It was in the food section with the coffee (I know, not all Targets have food sections). This stuff is in individual serving packets (I forget how many packets were in the box) and seems like it would be handy. Hope this helps.
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Old 05-02-2007, 10:09 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by weasel! View Post
Charski, thanks for the tip. I checked out Netrition's page on DaVinci syrups and found that their simple syrup contains:



My questions: Wouldn't this Splenda contain the same ingredients, including maltodextrin, as the powdered Splenda? Or is that just a filler for the dry version? Is it maltodextrin that gives powdered Splenda its sour off-taste?

Does pure sucralose really taste different from powdered Splenda? And if so, then does that mean that something like Sweetzfree might be a good option?

We were hesitating on investing in a bottle of Sweetzfree until we find out more. It's $18 for 1 oz, but if you like it, it's a good value. It equals 24 cups of sugar! (1/4 teaspoon = 1 cup sugar!!!!) But what if it just tastes the same as a packet of Splenda? In that case, if you don't like powdered Splenda, then there would be no point in getting Sweetzfree, or DaVinci Simple Syrup, for that matter.

Thanks for any clarification you can provide!
The bottled syrups contain no fillers like the packets/granular versions. To me the liquid stuff tastes much better than the packaged. I love Sweetzfree so if that is an option for you to purchase I'd give it a go!

Netrition also carries something called FiberFit which is a more dilute version of Sweetzfree. It's very good too.
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Old 05-02-2007, 10:19 AM   #14
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Char,

I forgot about the Fiberfit--that is good too. I got it a while back and because it's liquid no fillers--includes fiber too! No fillers mean no carbs. I am trying to do less shopping on the net and prefer to get things I can find here at home as opposed to online. At least my DH likes it that way!! That is why I have the NectaSweet. I wanted something that I could find in my grocery and not have to go online every time I ran out. I also have tried the flavored Splenda packs for coffee and was not impressed. Have a whole box that will probably go unused--I think Davinci is better...
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Old 05-02-2007, 04:47 PM   #15
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I need to set the record straight on one thing -- I said in the thread start that my husband had a craving for sweet, and I thought it might be brought on by starting to use Splenda in coffee that day. I was mistaken. My husband told me, after reading the post, that he's been wanting something sweet all along. The fact that we now had an LC-legal sweetener in the house made him want to see what fun sweet thing he could make with it. (He went with a cuppa Red Zinger.)

Anyway. Thanks for all of these suggestions! I've learned a lot already. In a nutshell -- what we're looking for is something that adds sweetness to coffee WITHOUT adding any other flavor. So flavored Splenda powder, cinnamon sticks, coconut milk -- perhaps delicious, but not the target.

I guess it's not just about coffee. It's about learning the different properties of all these interesting sweeteners, sugar alcohols, etc. What adds sweet, without adding anything else? That's what it comes down to.

Thanks for any more details and suggestions!
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Old 05-02-2007, 05:34 PM   #16
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If you could get a small sample of xylitol to try, that would be worth a shot. Xylitol tastes just like real sugar to my taste buds. When I taste it on a spoon, it just tastes like sugar. It isn't cheap, so if he could get a sample to taste or a small portion to buy before spending a lot, that might help.

Some people are sensitive to it, of course. I am sensitive to everything. I can't tolerate much isomalt at all and no maltitol, but I can handle xylitol. It even has some health benefits.
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Old 05-03-2007, 11:17 AM   #17
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+1 to what sungoddess stated. I've used Xylitol before w/much success because I don't care much for the Splenda/Sweet n Low/Sugar Twin, etc. aftertaste in drinks. I still use Splenda, etc...but, in my coffee cream is a must to balance the flavors out.


I have found that it does take more Xylitol to sweeten a cup of coffee or sweeten cereal than other things like Splenda, Stevia, etc. A plus, xylitol is plant based...so, it's a healthier alternative they say.



Oh...about the flavored Splenda for coffee. They have hazelnut, vanilla, and mocha. I got a 2 free samples of the mocha and it has a strong AS aftertaste. One of the little tubes in my mug of coffee was too much sweetener and very little mocha flavor. The mocha just kinda floats around on the top like cocoa powder would if you tried to stir it in. Just a forewarning!! YMMV though.
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Old 05-08-2007, 06:19 AM   #18
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I've had a problem with aftertaste too, but the splenda quickpaks have much less filler and they're easy to find, and we don't have the extra carbs that the regular packets do. you do have tofigure out a way to measure it, as a teaspoon is equal to a cup. Just a pinch will sweeten a cup of coffee
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Old 05-08-2007, 08:20 AM   #19
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How sweet does your DH like his hot drink?

Because if he likes it VERY sweet, a mix of one yellow packet and one pink packet seems to work for my DH, who doesn't worry about the maltodextrine filler.

I make a "down and dirty" mixture in an old plastic bottle (held Fiberfit once)with a dropper top of the Splenda Quick Packs--sometimes a couple, some stevia, and a pack of Acesulfame. . . and tap water. . .

Then I drop to my own taste preference. . .

Very LC. . .and well, I'm a kind of slapdash girl, so I can go with whatever strength comes out!

Best of luck!!!!
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Old 05-08-2007, 08:47 PM   #20
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Quote:
What adds sweet, without adding anything else? That's what it comes down to.
To avoid carby fillers and a pronounced aftertaste (for most people, it does vary to personal taste), go for a sweetener that comes in
  • liquid (no filler, concentrated for cooking or diluted for small amounts), or
  • "quickpack" (very little filler, 3g per C sweetness, great for cooking, terrible for measuring in small amounts as is) or
  • tabs (very little filler but awkward for cooking, lots of calculating and crushing).
Sucralose (Splenda) is the only one in a commercial "quick pack" and is generally accepted as the most "sugar" tasting of the intense sweeteners (sucralose, ace-k, saccharin, aspartame, cyclamate, stevia, lo han) to the most people. The rest generally available in packets or tabs (most with maltodextrin or dextrose filler) or granular (spoon-for-spoon). Some available in liquids.

You can buy DaVinci Simple Syrup (dilute, 3/4C == 1C sugar sweetness) to try out a no-filler liquid with sucralose as the "active" ingredient at a reasonable rate to see if you like it, FiberFit (more or less concentrated, very small amounts == 1C sugar sweetness) when and if you decide you do like the unfillered carbfree sucralose sweetener.

Of the bulking sweeteners, I like the Xylitol and the Erythritol, but like them best for cooking (and trying recipes is the best way to learn about their quirks). I've found Xylitol relatively cheaply at nearby Health Food Stores, good for trying out for coffee, etc. Netrition (great flat shipping) carries the E, so it won't be a big deal to add a trial package to an order for that. These are pretty much spoon-for-spoon, making them good beverage candidates.

I like to get the pure intense sweeteners when I can, even Stevia Pure White Extract Powder, and make up my own sweetener liquid, thereby controlling the amount used and the carrier/filler ingredient. I find the aftertaste is pretty much gone if one doesn't oversweeten (and it's easy to do).

Best bet is to blend sweeteners, and there's lots of info here about that. Soon as you blend sweeteners (and preferably start with the lowest carby ones you can, either liquid or powder) you get a great synergy that allows you to get the same sweeteness and less aftertaste with a lot less total combined sweetener. Win/win!

Hope this helps, at least as a starting point. As you've noticed, this is a "learning curve" area!

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Last edited by theislandgirl; 05-08-2007 at 08:55 PM..
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Old 06-05-2007, 08:14 AM   #21
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If you like coffee mocha this is what I have gotten hooked on. I have never liked coffee but this combination always hits the spot for me in the morning.
I put 1/2 sccoop or 1/2 pakage of "Big Train" low carb hot chocolate mix in a big mug of coffee. It is 5 carbs for a whole scoop or package.
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