Ask the RD: Replacing Sugar in Baking

Q: If I replace the sugar in my baking with a substitute like Splenda, can I enjoy a few more cookies?

A: When it comes to baking, sugar isn’t our only concern. Flour, while it may not seem sweet, also contains carbohydrates, as well as other ingredients like applesauce, oats, dried fruit, or fresh fruit. The total number of carbohydrates will affect your blood sugar, not just the sugar alone. While it is certainly acceptable to enjoy some holiday cookies – even with sugar! – we still need to be careful with portion size.

  • If you know ahead of time that you will be enjoying some sweet desserts, try to reduce your intake of carbohydrates during the meal. Stuffing, potatoes, pasta, rice and bread can all be enjoyed, but maybe not all together if there is going to be dessert afterwards.
  • If you do find you eat a little more than intended, a nice walk around the neighborhood after the meal can help bring your blood sugar back into a healthy range (and a fun family activity!).

Assistance provided by Leandra Rabinovitch, dietetic intern

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