I have diabetes, and I'm wondering if I can substitute honey for sugar in my diet?
Answer From M. Regina Castro, M.D.
Generally, there's no advantage to substituting honey for sugar in a diabetes eating plan. Both honey and sugar will affect your blood sugar level.
Honey is sweeter than granulated sugar, so you might use a smaller amount of honey for sugar in some recipes. But honey actually has slightly more carbohydrates and more calories per teaspoon than does granulated sugar — so any calories and carbohydrates you save will be minimal.
If you prefer the taste of honey, go ahead and use it — but only in moderation. Be sure to count the carbohydrates in honey as part of your diabetes eating plan.
M. Regina Castro, M.D.
Sept. 16, 2016
- Sugar and desserts. American Diabetes Association. http://www.diabetes.org/food-and-fitness/food/what-can-i-eat/understanding-carbohydrates/sugar-and-desserts.html. Accessed Aug. 19, 2016.
- Nutrient data for 19335, sugars, granulated. USDA National Nutrient Database for Standard Reference. https://ndb.nal.usda.gov/ndb/foods/show/6319?gcd=&manu=&lfacet=&format=&count=&max=35&offset=&sort=&qlookup=19335. Accessed Aug. 19, 2016.
- Nutrient data for 19296, honey. USDA National Nutrient Database for Standard Reference. https://ndb.nal.usda.gov/ndb/foods/show/6287?fgcd=&manu=&lfacet=&format=&count=&max=35&offset=&sort=&qlookup=19296. Accessed Aug. 19, 2016.