🍭Sugars and Sugar-Alcohols

Carbohydrates are necessary to consume daily and are the body’s main source of energy. However, added sugars (oftentimes known as “empty calories”) should be avoided when possible, as they can quickly spike blood sugar leading to our bodies storing them as fats. In the United States, candy is one of the top sources of added sugar consumed daily. Keep in mind that a complete restriction of sweet snacks is usually unnecessary, and cutting out candy completely may create negative feelings. Consuming sweet treats in moderation can be done to limit the intake of added sugars while still satisfying cravings.

🍬 Sugar alcohols like Mannitol and Sorbitol usually offer great flavor and are very cheap to produce, so they are very common to find in snacks labeled as sugar-free. While these are fine to consume and offer a lower glycemic index than cane sugar, they may have a delayed effect on sugar levels and need to be consumed in moderation. These sugar alcohols may also cause some gastrointestinal issues such as diarrhea, bloating, and excess gas.

🍭Alternative Sweet Treats

If you have a sweet tooth, you are all too well aware of the cravings that hit late at night or after a large meal, and that image of a melt-in-your-mouth chocolate chip cookie may linger for the rest of the day. 

So how do we satisfy cravings without consuming excess carbohydrates, added sugars, and extra calories? Below are 5 of the best no-sugar or low-sugar alternatives to candies and sweets that will reduce carb intake while satisfying cravings. Pick the option that best fits your lifestyle, flavor, texture profile, and budget, and try them out to see if one works as a substitute for those delicious, full-sugar treats you know and love.

🍭Werthers Original (Sugar-Free)
  • Smooth texture with a rich flavor, these little treats take a long time to eat if you leave them in your mouth and don’t chew.
  • One candy contains only 8 calories, and less than 3 grams of carbs.
  • You can have up to 5 of these golden-wrapped treats and still have only consumed one serving of carbohydrates!
🍭Jolly Ranchers Zero Sugar
  • One candy contains 9 calories and less than 4 grams of carbs, with zero added sugar
  • This sweet treat has several flavor options (watermelon, grape, apple, and raspberry), so you won’t get sick of these as quickly and can pick your favorite flavor
  • A bag of 45 pieces is only around $5 which is very comparable in price to the original, full-sugar variant
🍭ChocZero Assorted Candies
  • These chocolate alternatives have made quite a name for themselves, with consumers regarding them as one of the best low-carb chocolate options in the market today.
  • ChocZero has an entire line of chocolate products made with no added sugars or sugar alcohols. The sweetener comes from the vanilla bean and Monk Fruit, a vine-grown fruit which yields a 0-calorie sugar substitute
  • Available as individual squares, there are 6 grams of carbohydrates per chocolate
  • ChocZero offers Milk, Dark, and White chocolate, with flavors such as peppermint, caramel, cookies and cream, and more
🍭Kiss My Keto Gummy Bears
  • Kiss My Keto has an entire line of low-carb products, including gummies, general snacks, breads, and even supplements. We’re recommending the gummy bears, as they’re different from the other types of candies on this list, but feel free to check out their entire product selection
  • Kiss my Keto gummies come as individual packages similar to the size of a fruit-snack pouch, which is great as it limits your portion to a single serving size.
  • These gummy bears come in an assortment of flavors, including Berry Bites, Fruity Mix, and Watermelon. They also produce sour versions of their gummies. YUM!!
  • One pouch contains 15 grams of total carbohydrates with only 2 grams of added sugars. Additionally, one pack has 12 grams of fiber, helping to prevent sugar-induced gastric problems and aiding in hunger control
  • Note: If you are on a tight budget, these might not be the best option. An 8-count currently runs for $24 on their website, which comes to $3 per pouch.
🍭Dr. Pepper Zero Sugar
  • Oftentimes a candy craving is simply for the sweet taste rather than legitimate hunger or lack of adequate carbohydrate intake. Snacking or reaching for candy are options, but sometimes a cold beverage can do the trick.
  • Dr. Pepper Zero Sugar is made with a sugar substitute called Ace-K, which provides a very sweet taste and a syrup-y texture and is sure to satisfy your sweet tooth.
  • It contains no carbohydrates or calories, but does contain caffeine.
  • Although artificial sweeteners aren’t an ideal solution, they do reduce sugar intake and satisfy cravings. If Dr. Pepper isn’t for you, many other Pepsi and Coke products offer ‘diet’ or ‘zero sugar’ versions of their famous drinks.


As a reminder, no added sugars doesn’t mean no sugar, use these in moderation with a balanced diet to help decrease those sweet cravings and balance your sugars and health goals.