Do you think it's OK for me to use a spoonful of orange juice concentrate in my apple strudel? I notice that many of your recipies include orange juice. But every time I mention using frozen concentrate OJ in a recipe to my doctor, he reminds me of how much sugar is in it. I am mostly stable, with glucose numbers between 95 and 120.

Amy Campbell


Yes, it’s fine to use a small amount of orange juice concentrate in your apple strudel. One tablespoon of orange juice concentrate contains about 7 grams of carbohydrate (for comparison, one tablespoon of sugar contains 12 grams of carbohydrate). However, the issue with your strudel (or any food, for that matter), is not the sugar content, it’s the carbohydrate content. Carbohydrate is the nutrient that has the most effect on blood glucose. Sources of carbohydrate include starches (bread, pasta, grains, cereal) and sugar (desserts, candy, honey, table sugar). Both starches and sugar turn into glucose during digestion which, in turn, raises blood glucose levels. So, the bottom line is that a person with diabetes should focus on controlling total carbohydrate intake and not worry so much about how much sugar is in a food. Of course, eating too many sugary foods isn’t a good idea, as these foods tend to be high in calories and fat. Enjoy your strudel, but watch your portion, and continue to check your blood glucose regularly.

November 14, 2012 at 4:34 pm