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December 20, 2001

Meal Planning, Food and Diet

Question from Buenos Aires, Argentina

II would like to know if fructose really prevents lows at night. Is it safe? Why it isn't more commonly used?

ANSWER:

Fructose is more commonly referred to as fruit sugar and can be found in all fresh fruits and fruit juice and to a certain extent in high fructose corn sugars which are sweeteners used in candies, cakes, pies, baked goods, etc. Fructose raises blood sugars just as much as sucrose (table sugar). People with diabetes used to be taught that fruit sugars were better for you than table sugar, but nowadays, we know that all carbohydrates (either from sucrose or fructose) are broken down by your body into glucose, which raises your blood sugar. Amounts are more important nowadays, as opposed to types of carbohydrate. Fructose is a good treatment for low blood sugar but will not prevent nocturnal hypoglycemia. You may be thinking about the addition of protein in a bedtime snack to help with preventing nighttime hypoglycemia. JMS