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About a month ago I was diagnosed with Diabetes. Since then I've been looking for a sugarless beverage I could drink, (I don't like diet soda.) Odwalla juice is very tasty, (but expensive.) Does anyone know if this would work for a person with diabetes. Also does anyone out there have an idea for a tasty low sugar drink that isn't a diet soda.

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  1. Sorry if this is obvious, but it might just be a case of your tastebuds needing to get used to the taste of water. I know a lot of people who hate the taste of water, but if you're not drinking enough it really is best to get used to it. Add a piece of lemon, lime, cucumber, or even strawberry to a pitcher and see if it helps. You can do the same with club soda.

    If you still need a real sugarless drink, try kombucha. I strongly dislike store bought brands (check the label for sugar content), but if you're interested in starting a homemade version it's much less sour and has a nice fizz to it. It's also sugarless but has a mild sweetness to it.

    Also try the usual teas and coffees you like with all the different fake sugars available now (splenda, stevia, xylitol) and see if there's one you like. But for me, eating things that are sweet just makes me want more sweets. Going cold turkey on sugar for a week or two severely decreases my desire for any sugar overall.

    3 Replies
    1. re: Pei

      I agree with Pei. Try adding citrus to sparkling water. I like adding ginger root too. Water should be your best friend. Fruit juices, including Odwalla, can be very good but they do have the inevitable sugars that come with, well, fruit.

      1. re: Pei

        We had some last night. The variety we had was two servings (we shared) and has 2 g of sugar.

        1. re: Pei

          Try crystal light. Fruit juices are not good for diabetics.

        2. Fruit juices are not good for regular consumption for diabetic patients. If your sugars go low, it may be worth a swig or two. Pei is right, get used to water. Hate water? Try adding a piece (just ONE small) piece of fresh fruit just like Pei suggested.

          Be weary of using the artificial sweeteners. It oftentimes will cause you to crave more sweets. And, if you use enough of some of the artificial sweeteners, you'll be..ahem...more regular than usual.

          1. I loathe sweet drinks. I drink a lot of water. As mentioned try adding citrus, melon, cucumber, mint to water and see what you think. I also drink a lot of sparkling water - again add some of the above to try it.

            I also drink a lot of unsweetened iced tea. I mostly make plain black iced tea but will play with some of the herbal ones. I also like to brew peach tea with a bag of vanilla tea in it for a change. Never any sugar or sweetners though.

            Iced coffee isn't bad, though I prefer tea. but if you don't like your coffee unsweetened(i drink mine black) this may not be somethign you like.

            As mentioned it's probably just a matter of adjusting your taste buds which will take time. I've never cared for soda or much juice or any drink that's sweet even as a kid but now as an adult really can't tolerate sweet drinks much at all.

            I'm not a fan of the Torani syrups but they do make some sugar free varities you can add to sparkling water. My mother, who avoids sugar, likes these. She likes the peach and raspberry the best. Be aware this is artificially sweetened however.

              1. The "individual" bottles of Odwalla pure juice contain 2 servings with 12-24 grams of sugar per serving for most varieties....their smoothies are in the range of 30 grams of sugar.

                1. Poster Pei is a chowhound of notoriously discriminating taste. Give strong consideration to her recs for homemade kinds of things as these come from doing it herself in her own home.

                  Water is like tofu - the resulting taste is either of your own your doing or your own fault. As far as taste is concerned, water is simply a foil for you to build upon. If you don't have a water-purifying system at home, I would strongly advise researching this and choose one appropriate to your home. After that, you can experiment with things like citrus, mint or other herbs, strawberries, ginger, etc.

                  Look to other cultures, particularly those in warm climates, to gain inspiration. Places like Singapore, Malaysia, Vietnam and Japan have numerous drinks that can be very exotic to many of us, while at the same time very interesting to the palate. Barley drinks, various teas, drinks with basil seeds, longan, lotus seeds, and soy drinks examples of drinks that are common to these countries' cuisines.

                  I don't know what range of bottled or canned beverages are available to you, but I was just in Gelson's, a small chain of somewhat premium supermarkets, and as I walked their refrigerated beverage aisle, I saw quite a few low- and no-calorie beverages. I can't recall a time when the variety of beverages to the consumer has been more broad. It might be worth you visiting a local store that offers a broad selection of beverages. Walk the aisle, read labels, try those out that suit your dietary requirements as well as particular tastes. As an example, I picked up a bottle of "Vidration" vitamin-enhanced water. The name/flavor was "Recover/Fruit Punch." I think the sweetener was sucralose. I was thirsty, it hit the spot, it had just an undertone of sweetness, and tasted pretty good for a zero-calorie drink. I checked out their website, but it appears it's still in the process of being built.


                  2 Replies
                  1. re: bulavinaka

                    Wow, thanks! High praise indeed, coming from bulavinaka.

                    I love your ideas of drinks that are exotic to Americans but quite popular in hotter climes. I could drink barley tea all day long (and sometimes do).

                    1. re: Pei

                      I still recall your amazing contributions on the LA board - I still consider you to be one of the best!

                      Barley tea, mugi-cha, barley-this, barley-that - barley is really great for making drinks that hit that spot...

                  2. If you like bubbly water, it may be worth looking into one of the home seltzer systems - either just a seltzer siphon or a fancier (more $) 'system' that includes flavors. You can easily infuse flavors into your bubbly water, and it will cost and waste a lot less than buying it bottled.

                    1. Ever since the late '90's I have never supported Odwalla.
                      My favorite drink is water with lemon or Pellegrino with lime.
                      No calories and no sugar.

                      1. After being a Diet Coke junkie for many years, I gave it up cold turkey almost a year ago for health reasons (acid reflux, plus all the bad press about artificial sweeteners). I like making iced tea with a mixture of flavored tea bags - much more interesting than plain. Plus I drink LOTS of water which I find very boring without lemon or lime wedges. I have avoided all types of fruit juices for years because of all the calories.

                        1. red zinger iced tea is delicious.

                          how is carrot juice with plain yogurt for sugar content?

                          1. Check out the Fuze Slenderize line - they are low carb/low sugar. I have the bluberry raspberry flavor on my desk it has 10 cals, 2 carb, 1 sugar for a serving, 2 servings per bottle. I don't think it tastes very "diet-y" but my husband does.

                            1. I know this sounds over simplistic but I like some of the tropical Kool-Aids sweetened with Splenda and I make "Arnold Palmers" with iced tea and Minute Maid "lite" lemonade.

                              1. I drink mostly water, but if I want a bit of flavor I use a packet of Emergen-C. It comes in multiple flavors (favorite is the Tangerine) and has 25 calories per packet with only 6g of sugar, no artificial sweeteners. The bonus is that it contains vitamins as well as flavor.

                                2 Replies
                                1. re: pickledtink

                                  wyler's lemonade drink mix is very good.

                                  love emergen-c, also. i like the original lemon-y flavor.

                                  1. re: pickledtink

                                    One thing to keep in mind about Emergen-C is that it as a ton of vitamin C/ascorbic acid in it. A fair amount of folks aren't used to consuming this stuff frequently - maybe one on the AM and one in the PM. Beyond that, and the digestive tract might revolt...

                                  2. There are lots of good ideas on this thread. I'm just going to say that you shouldn't have to ask this question. You need to educate yourself as to how to read food labels and determine for yourself how a food fits into your particular nutritional program, and you should be working with a nutritionist who can answer these questions for you. Taking advice on a medical question from strangers on the internet is *not* a good strategy for managing a serious chronic disease.

                                    1. Crystal Lite is low calorie and isn't that bad - I liked the lemonade and the grapefruit flavors. It's quite inexpensive if you buy it in the powdered form.

                                      I had gestational diabetes while pregnant and therefore ended up getting a crash course on learning about cooking and eating with diabetes.

                                      If you are insured, there is a very good chance that a visit to a nutritionist will be covered - please take advantage of it if you can. Just eating a low sugar/low carb diet isn't enough - it's also how you eat and how you combine foods.

                                      There are also a lot of Diabetes-related cookbooks now and some are actually pretty decent. The South Beach Diet has quite a few recipes that would work for you and I found The Mediterranean Diet the most helpful of all.

                                      But Ruth L. is right - you need to do a lot of research. If you can't go to a nutritionist, start doing research online about how to eat as a diabetic and why you need to eat that way. It's a pretty complex diet that you'll need to follow.

                                      Good luck!

                                      1 Reply
                                      1. re: sebetti

                                        Even if you aren't insured, a visit with a nutritionist is not that expensive, and it's certainly cheaper than getting sick! You're going to be diabetic for the rest of your life, so think of it as an investment that will pay off for many, many years.

                                        1. re: alkapal

                                          Thanks for all the info. I actually like the taste of water but sometimes I'm looking
                                          for something different. My mom used to make Crystal Lite, it's not half bad, (But I'm going to miss Nantucket Nectars.)

                                          1. re: syrup09

                                            please try the wyler's dry mix lemonade....it doesn't taste "diet" one bit.

                                            good luck.

                                        2. Sometimes, you just need more than water. My latest favorites:
                                          Iced black tea with mint - use 3/4 loose black tea and 1/4 dried mint to brew. I have an iced tea maker, and the $20 investment was worth it.
                                          Flavored water using fruit or veggies - I second the idea with cucumber (if you like cuke flavor). This weekend I thin sliced cucumber, lemon and some fresh mint and let them steep in filtered water, in the fridge. It was very refreshing, especially working in the heat. It also felt like a treat. A heat treat!

                                          2 Replies
                                          1. re: bakinggirl

                                            i like that cuke, mint, lemon idea!

                                            1. re: alkapal

                                              I tried Fuze. It wasn't half bad. I also bought a bottle of wheatgrass juice that was pretty rank.

                                          2. I drink strong iced tea, made with black tea and a couple of mint tea bags. If I want it a little sweet, I'll add a little splenda.

                                            I also like equal parts of crystal light citrus punch and club soda.