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Is AlluloseĀ Keto-Friendly? Your Guide to This Sugar Substitute

AlluloseĀ is a low-carb sweetenerĀ that doesnā€™t count towards your sugar intake. This naturally-occurring sugar substituteĀ doesnā€™t raise your blood sugar levels, making it an option for low-carb diets. But is alluloseĀ keto-friendly?


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It has health benefitsĀ you wonā€™t find in other natural sweeteners likeĀ stevia, monk fruit sweetener, and erythritol. It can improve your insulin sensitivity, help burn fat, and may protect your liver.

Discover the remarkable properties of allulose, how to use it, how much is safe to consume, and when it’s right to make the allulose-keto connection.

What Is Allulose?

AlluloseĀ is a naturally-occurring monosaccharideĀ (simple sugar). Itā€™s about 70% as sweet as table sugarĀ but contributes 90-95% fewer calories[*].

Other names for alluloseĀ include d-allulose, psicose, and d-psicose. Itā€™s found in small amounts along with other carbs in fruits like figs, jackfruit, and raisins, as well as in other agricultural products. Structurally, alluloseĀ is almost identical to fructose, but it has a ā€œflippedā€ hydroxyl (OH) group. And unlike fructose, alluloseĀ keeps your blood sugar stable.

According to the FDA, alluloseĀ is no longer counted towards total or added sugars for labeling purposes[*]. Thatā€™s because this sweetenerĀ doesnā€™t act like sugar in your body.

What’s Special About Allulose?

AlluloseĀ is generally recognized as safeĀ (GRAS) by the FDA. Like other sugar-freeĀ sweeteners, it was found to have a glycemic indexĀ of zero, not raising blood glucose levels[*].

A big hint that allulose isnā€™t a typical sugar or carbohydrate comes from the FDA labeling decision. Essentially, the FDA is acknowledging that allulose doesnā€™t raise your blood sugar. In fact, it doesnā€™t behave like a typical sugar inside your body.

Unlike fructose, which is metabolizedĀ by your liver and causes a spike in blood sugar, alluloseĀ is absorbed but isnā€™t metabolized[*][*]. About 70-80% of alluloseĀ is excreted in urine[*][*].

It May Help With Blood Sugar and Diabetes

Numerous studies have shown that alluloseĀ might improve insulin sensitivityĀ and aid with blood sugarĀ management in diabetic and non-diabetic people.

In a randomized study of healthy people, 5-7.5 grams of alluloseĀ consumed before a 75-gram sugary drink resulted in lower blood sugar and insulin levels[*].

During a separate clinical study, a mixed group of people — some of whom had relatively mild type 2 diabetesĀ — consumed 5 grams of alluloseĀ at meals three times daily[*]. Researchers discovered that the participants had lower blood glucoseĀ and that alluloseĀ was safe and didnā€™t cause any side effects. Other studies in animals and people have confirmed its blood-sugar-lowering effects[*][*].

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According to a rat study, alluloseĀ may even help protect pancreatic beta-cells, where insulin is made. Since untreated type 2 diabetesĀ leads to beta-cell death, alluloseĀ might help slow or prevent the progression of diabetes[*].

It Could Help You Lose Weight

Whereas most other carbohydrates kick you out of ketosisĀ and shift your metabolism away from a fat-burningĀ state, this isnā€™t the case with allulose.

Surprisingly, the monosaccharideĀ can enhance fat oxidation and may reduce your appetite[*][*]. Together, these features are potentially useful to support healthy weight loss.

In a study of healthy men and women, a 5-gram dose of alluloseĀ followed by a meal resulted in approximately 10% greater fat-burning compared to the control group[*]. The same study also found that their glucose levels were lower and free fatty acid levels higher, which is favorable for burning fat.

A separate 12-week study of overweight people found that daily alluloseĀ prevented weight gain, reduced their waist circumference, and caused weight loss[*]. Another large trial conducted in Korea found similar results[*].

An experiment in mice demonstrated that the sugar suppresses appetite and causes the release of GLP-1 (glucagon-like peptide 1)[*]. GLP-1 enhances insulin release, improves insulin sensitivity, and reduces hunger[*][*].

AlluloseĀ can also modify gene expression to reduce fat accumulation, promote fat burning, and increase antioxidant levels (in rats)[*].


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These unusual properties mean that alluloseĀ may be a helpful tool for preventing and even reversing obesity[*].

It Might Protect Your Liver

Because it increases antioxidant levels and enhances your bodyā€™s metabolism of sugar and fat, alluloseĀ may also prevent inflammation and related issues in your liver.

In a study of mice, alluloseĀ supplementation reduced fat mass and improved fatty liver associated with obesity[*]. Another study found that it reduced the activity of enzymes that contribute to liver fat storage[*].

Finally, a separate study found that alluloseĀ increased liver insulin sensitivity and glycogen content[*].

Allulose Safety and How Much to Eat

From the evidence, small quantities of allulose appear to be very safe.

For example, a 2010 clinical study found that no abnormal effects or medical issues occurred in people who consumed 15 grams of alluloseĀ per day for 12 Ā weeks[*].

Possible Side Effects

If you consume too much allulose, you might get nauseated or have diarrhea[*]. The upper limit for a single dose is 0.4 grams per kilogram of body weightĀ — thatā€™s about 27 grams, or approximately two tablespoons, for a 150-pound person at a sitting[*].

Sugar alternatives like allulose can have unpredictable effects on gut bacteria. The daily upper limit to avoid gastrointestinal side effects is 0.9 grams per kilogram of body weight, or 61 grams per day for a 150-pound person[*].

Unlike artificial sweetenersĀ (like Splenda) and sugar alcoholsĀ (like xylitol), there havenā€™t been any studies on alluloseā€™s impact on the microbiome. While thereā€™s nothing to suggest itā€™s harmful, you may want to pay extra attention to how your body responds if youā€™re prone to gut issues, bloating, or related problems.

If youā€™re on the ketogenic diet, low to moderate doses of the sweetenerĀ are extremely unlikely to kick you out of ketosis.

Thatā€™s because your body absorbs and excretes alluloseĀ without ever metabolizing it as sugar. It also seems to enhance fat oxidation and decrease carbohydrate oxidation, both of which are beneficial for ketosis.

However, the best way to know for sure is to test your ketoneĀ levelsĀ after eating it.

Is AlluloseĀ Keto-Friendly?

For a simple sugar, alluloseĀ is as ketoĀ as it gets.

It enhances fat oxidation, lowers your blood sugar, may improve your insulin sensitivity, and could even result in weight loss. Plus, alluloseĀ is also very unlikely to kick you out of ketosis, unlike other sugars like fructose.

Because your body only absorbs a tenth to a twentieth of the calories compared to regular sugar, most of the downsides of eating sugar donā€™t apply.

That said, any type of sweet treat or rewarding yourself with food can perpetuate addictive eating patterns, even if you use sugar replacements.

If youā€™re just starting a keto diet, the best strategy is to go a few months without treats to reset your preferences, then enjoy them occasionally.

Once you get to a place where you can have a healthy relationship with sweet-tasting foods, alluloseĀ keto treats are a fantastic choice. For sweet keto-friendlyĀ ideas, check out the dessert recipe sectionĀ on this website.


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