What Do All Those Sugar Labels Really Mean?

Dr. Oz has the answer.

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Q: What do all those sugar labels really mean?

Oz Says: The differences between claims about sugar are pretty intricate, so check our chart below to get exactly what you want — and avoid what you don't. Just remember this, says New York-based dietician Karen Ansel, RDN: None of these labels guarantees that a food is low in calories. So always look at the Nutrition Facts panel and the ingredients list on the back of the product, not just at the claims on the front.

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What are sugar alcohols?

The name's a little misleading — these don't contain alcohol. They're reduced-calorie sweeteners, often made from cornstarch. They don't boost blood sugar the way other sugars do, but they're not always low in calories. Also know: They can have a laxative effect. Some of the names you'll see: erythritol, glycerol, sorbitol, xylitol, and mannitol.

This story originally appeared in the March 2016 issue of Dr. Oz The Good Life.

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