Jonny Bowden, M.A., C.N.S., is a respected expert in the fields of fitness and nutrition. He is the
author of "Jonny Bowden's Shape Up!", "Jonny Bowden's Shape Up Workbook!", and most recently,
"Living the Low Carb Life: From Atkins to the Zone Choosing the Diet That's Right for You".
His work has also appeared in The New York Times, GQ, Cosmopolitan,
Seventeen, Fitness, Family Circle, Marie Claire, Allure, Men's Health and Walking.
He frequently appears on television and radio as a fitness expert and is also a popular speaker at
media events and seminars. His course, "Becoming a Personal Trainer," is a frequent sell-out at the
Learning Annex in New York.
Jonny will take your questions
about fitness and about low carb! Have a question for Jonny? Send it to: email@example.com.
While not all questions can be answered, we'll do our best to publish all we can. We are grateful to Jonny for taking the
time out of his busy schedule to lend a bit of advice to our readers!
Question from Michelle:
Copyright © December 2004 Jonny Bowden and Low Carb Luxury
Hi. I have recently been on a sugar free diet, and am using an all natural sweetener
called Stevia. The problem is that it's so much sweeter than sugar, it
only needs a tiny amount to sweeten something, therefore, when making cakes,
cookies, etc., I am missing the bulk that the sugar adds to the recipe.
I've found a cookbook that recommends using erythritol as a filler to bulk
up the stevia.
Have you ever used stevia? If so, have you had any luck with it?
Thanks in advance for your reply.
Stevia is a perfectly fine sweetener. I happen to hate it because of the aftertaste (it can taste
strongly of licorice), but many people love it. It doesn't always work well for baking or cooking because it
can lose some of its sweetness. The "lack of bulk" issue is one that many cooks deal with when using artificial
sweeteners as well.
Erythritol has a great reputation as the only sugar alcohol that causes no gastric
effects in 99% of people, and I see no problem using it as well.
Xylitol is also very healthy, but tends to give a cooling menthol-like aftertaste to
some foods. It's usually minimized by mixing sweeteners. You can also use some fibers to bulk up a recipe, like
Expert Foods' "Not Sugar."
Question from Al Bixby:
I'm on the Atkins diet because I have hypoglycemia. I have many symptoms such as
my heart beating fast at night. Many of them have gone away on the low carb diet.
My question is... I understand that wheat has a much worse effect on insulin than
sugar. So I'm wondering why do all the low carb breads I've seen have wheat in them?
Wheat doesn?t have a much worse effect than sugar, but it?s a darn close second when it?s processed
into things like white or enriched flour (in fact, some versions of the glycemic index use white
bread as a standard instead of pure glucose.) Most processed grains raise blood sugar pretty high.
However, if you're able to get a truly whole grain, high fiber bread with a minimum of carbohydrate
content and a maximum of fiber content, it's usually fine for most people.
The degree of processing of the wheat is what makes the body react to it like sugar, and
most foods that contain wheat are highly processed.
Jonny Bowden, M.A., C.N., C.N.S.
Certified Nutrition Specialist