Allulose is a rare sugar that occurs naturally in small amounts in figs, raisins, and molasses. Unlike other sugars, allulose is not metabolized by the body, so it has no calories and does not raise blood sugar levels (2). Allulose is being used increasingly as a sweetener in food products because it tastes like sugar but without the calories (2). Yet the limited research on the safety of allulose has caused some experts to raise concerns about its potential side effects. Here’s what you need to know about the possible side effects of allulose. Note that these side effects are only associated with high doses of allulose and are not common.
1. Digestive Issues
Allulose can cause digestive issues like gas, bloating, diarrhea, and constipation in some people (7). If you experience any of these side effects after consuming allulose, it’s best to avoid it or limit your intake.
2. Allergic Reactions
Allergic reactions to allulose are rare but have been reported. Symptoms of an allergic reaction include hives, rash, itching, swelling, and difficulty breathing. If you experience any of these symptoms after consuming allulose, seek medical attention immediately.
3. Blood Sugar Effects
Although allulose does not raise blood sugar levels like sugar does, it may cause reductions in blood sugar which people with diabetes who are taking insulin or other blood sugar-lowering medications need to be aware of (5). If you have diabetes, it’s important to monitor your blood sugar levels closely when consuming allulose.
4. Weight Gain
Although allulose is non-caloric, some experts believe it could still cause weight gain by stimulating appetite or promoting fat storage. More research is needed to confirm these potential side effects.
5. Other Side Effects
Other rare side effects of allulose include headaches, fatigue, and dizziness. If you experience any of these side effects after consuming allulose, it’s best to avoid it or limit your intake.
Read More: Is Sucralose Bad For You? Facts About This Artificial Sweetener
Is Allulose Too Good To Be True?
Extensive research has been done on sugar and its effects on the human body. Table sugar is notorious for causing cavities, weight gain, and spikes in blood sugar levels (12). Most importantly, it may trigger inflammation, which is associated with many chronic diseases (4).
Allulose is a natural sugar found in some fruits and plants and doesn’t have the same negative effects as table sugar. It’s not too good to be true- allulose is the real deal.
Allulose is a monosaccharide, or single sugar molecule, that occurs naturally in small amounts in wheat, jackfruit, and figs. Unlike other sugars, allulose is not metabolized by the body, so it doesn’t cause spikes in blood sugar levels. What exactly does allulose do to your body? Here are the five ways allulose might benefit your health
1. Is Low Calorie And Doesn’t Cause Weight Gain
Allulose is about 70% as sweet as table sugar, but it contains only a fraction of the calories. In fact, allulose has almost zero calories- so it won’t add to your waistline (3).
2. Reduces Inflammation
Allulose may reduce inflammation, possibly through interaction with beneficial bacteria in the gut (10).
3. Promotes Gut Health
The gut is home to trillions of bacteria, many of which are beneficial for our health. Allulose may feed the good bacteria in the gut, which promotes a healthy gut microbiome (11).
4. Lowers Blood Sugar Levels
Allulose has a minimal effect on blood sugar levels, even when consumed in large amounts. This is good news for people with diabetes or prediabetes, who need to keep their blood sugar levels in check (10).
How Much Allulose Should You Eat?
There is no official recommended daily intake of allulose, but one gastrointestinal tolerance study suggested that it may be safe to consume a maximum of 0.4 grams per kilogram of body weight at a time, or 0.9 grams per kilogram per day (7). This amounts to 28 grams at one time or 63 grams per day for a 70-kilogram person (about 150 pounds).
Consuming more than this amount may cause abdominal discomfort and diarrhea in some people. You may find that your individual tolerance varies. We suggest that you start with a small amount (a teaspoon perhaps) and see how it goes.
Allulose is available in the same form as sugar, as a powder, and in some foods. You can also find allulose-sweetened products, such as allulose syrup, online and in some health food stores.
If you’re looking to add allulose to your diet, start by replacing table sugar with allulose in your coffee or tea. You can also use it in baking or to sweeten yogurt, oatmeal, or other foods. Just be aware that allulose doesn’t caramelize like sugar does, so it may not work as well in some recipes.
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How To Use Allulose For Weight Loss
If you’re trying to lose weight, allulose can help by preventing cravings and reducing hunger. When used in combination with a healthy diet and exercise, allulose can help you reach your weight loss goals (15).
You can allulose to lose weight by:
Satisfying Your Sweet Tooth With Fruit
Some fruits naturally contain allulose, including jackfruit and figs. You can also find allulose in raisins, dates, and prunes. While these fruits are healthy and can help with weight loss, they’re also high in sugar. So, be sure to eat them in moderation (9).
Allulose-Sweetened Foods As Substitutes
There are a number of allulose-sweetened foods on the market that can be used as substitutes for sugary snacks and desserts. These include allulose-sweetened chocolate, cookies, cake, ice cream, and more.
When choosing an allulose-sweetened product, be sure to read the label carefully. Some products may contain other forms of sugar as well, which you’ll want to take into account.
Using Allulose In Recipes
Allulose can be used in place of sugar in recipes. It can also be used to sweeten coffee, tea, and other beverages. Allulose is about 70% as sweet as sugar, so you may need to use a little more to achieve the same level of sweetness.
Low Carb Dieting
Low carb diets can be very effective for weight loss (14). Allulose can help you stick to your low carb diet by satisfying your sweet tooth without the added sugar.
Allulose is a great alternative to sugar for those on a low carb diet. It is also perfect for people with diabetes or other conditions that require them to limit their sugar intake.
Read More: Zero Calorie Sweetener: Is It A Good Substitute For Refined Sugar?
What’s The FDA’s Position On Allulose?
Allulose is a naturally occurring sugar found in small amounts in certain fruits and plants. The FDA has classified allulose as a “generally recognized as safe” (GRAS) substance for use in food. This means that it is safe to consume and does not require special labeling or approval before being used in food products (8).
In 2016, the FDA issued a final rule that allows allulose to be excluded from the total and added sugars calculations on food labels. This means that foods that contain allulose can have their sugar content reduced by up to 40% on the Nutrition Facts label (6).
Allulose can also be used as a sugar substitute in processed foods and beverages.
The FDA has also issued a no objection letter for the use of allulose in dietary supplements. This means that allulose can be used as an ingredient in supplements, but it cannot be marketed as a weight loss or diabetes treatment (13).
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The Bottom Line
Allulose is a promising sugar alternative with many potential benefits. However, more research is needed to determine its long-term effects. Until then, enjoy allulose in moderation and be sure to consult with your doctor if you have any questions or concerns.
This article is intended for general informational purposes only and does not address individual circumstances. It is not a substitute for professional advice or help and should not be relied on to make decisions of any kind. Any action you take upon the information presented in this article is strictly at your own risk and responsibility!
- Advanced Glycation End Products and Risks for Chronic Diseases: Intervening Through Lifestyle Modification (2017, ncbi.nlm.nih.gov)
- Allulose in human diet: the knowns and the unknowns (2021, pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov)
- A Preliminary Study for Evaluating the Dose-Dependent Effect of d-Allulose for Fat Mass Reduction in Adult Humans: A Randomized, Double-Blind, Placebo-Controlled Trial (2018, mdpi.com)
- Chronic inflammation in the etiology of disease across the life span (2019, nature.com)
- Effects of D-allulose on glucose tolerance and insulin response to a standard oral sucrose load: results of a prospective, randomized, crossover study (2021, bmj.com)
- FDA In Brief: FDA allows the low-calorie sweetener allulose to be excluded from total and added sugars counts on Nutrition and Supplement Facts labels when used as an ingredient (2019, fda.gov)
- Gastrointestinal Tolerance of D-Allulose in Healthy and Young Adults. A Non-Randomized Controlled Trial (2018, mdpi.com)
- generally recognized as safe (gras) notice of d-allulose (d-psicose) as a food ingredient (2017, fda.gov)
- Health Benefits of Fruits and Vegetables (2012, academic.oup.com)
- Research Advances of d-allulose: An Overview of Physiological Functions, Enzymatic Biotransformation Technologies, and Production Processes (2021, mdpi.com)
- Role of Synbiotics Containing d-Allulose in the Alteration of Body Fat and Hepatic Lipids in Diet-Induced Obese Mice (2018, mdpi.com)
- Sugar consumption, metabolic disease and obesity: The state of the controversy (2015, ncbi.nlm.nih.gov)
- The Declaration of Allulose and Calories from Allulose on Nutrition and Supplement Facts Labels: Guidance for Industry (2020, fda.gov)
- The Merits and the Pitfalls of Low Carbohydrate Diet: A Concise Review (2020, pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov)
- Weight-Loss and Maintenance Strategies (2004, ncbi.nlm.nih.gov)