The introduction of fat and carbohydrates replacers has been a revolutionary advance in treating obesity and diabetes mellitus. Since these materials have shown to have beneficial effects on the metabolic profiles of diabetic patients, they should be useful in designing specific foods for patients with diabetes.
Objective: To compare metabolic and anthropometric improvements elicited by a diet based on the American Diabetic Association's nutrition recommendations with a modified, low-energy diet incorporating fat replacers and non-sucrose sweeteners.
Design: A total of 16 male, well controlled type 2 diabetes patients were divided into two groups of eight; one group received the diet based on the American Diabetic Association's nutrition recommendations, and the other was fed a modified, low-calorie diet containing a fat replacer (beta-glucans derived from oats) and the sweeteners, sucralose and fructose. Both groups were maintained on their respective diets for 4 weeks. All patients performed daily aerobic exercise consisting of walking for 60 minutes. Body weight, body mass index, basal glycemia, hemoglobin HbA1C, and lipid profile were determined in each patient before starting the diets and after 4 weeks of dietary intervention.
Results: Both diets produced significant improvements in weight, body mass index, lipid profile, basal glucose, and HbA1C. However, the experimental diet was superior to the American Diabetic Association's diet in improving metabolic and anthropometric profile: greater increase in HDL cholesterol and larger decreases in HbA1C, weight, and body mass index.
Conclusions: A diet incorporating a fat replacer and non-sucrose sweeteners produced a greater improvement in metabolic and anthropometric variables in well controlled type 2 diabetic patients when compared with a diet based on American Diabetic Association's nutrition recommendations.