Most people are unaware of all the names of sugar … are you one of them? Could you spot a hidden sugar?

Just look at the full chart below. This is just a glimpse of all the names.

Names of sugar - and how it hides from us.

Why Are There So Many Names Of Sugar?

If we want to really read and understand labels so we can avoid sugar, we need to know all the tricks of the trade and how sugar hides from us.

Food manufacturers are getting savvy, knowing if sugar is high on their ingredient list, their product isn’t exactly going to fly off the shelf. So what do they do?

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Disguise/hide the sugar PLUS use multiple versions of sugar

Firstly they disguise sugar under all these different names knowing people don’t associate many of these with just plain old sugar.

Secondly, they use multiple versions of sugar.

Ingredients are listed in order of the quantity present in that product. If a product has more sugar than anything else, sugar will be the first ingredient on the list. Now food manufacturers know that if sugar is no.1 on the list, people probably won’t buy it.

They want sugar to be as far down the list as possible so they use multiple types of sugar. Now that each type of sugar is individually smaller each one will appear further down the ingredient list, giving you the impression sugar is no longer the number 1 ingredient.

So remember all the names of sugar, and add them up. Look at the nutrition label for total sugar per serving as well as the ingredient list.

And don’t be fooled by “no added sugars” or “refined sugar-free”. These are just sneaky marketing tactics.

A product may still be high with naturally occurring sugars, coconut sugar, dried fruit or some high-sugar fruit syrup.

Sugar is sugar no matter what you call it.

There is no such thing as a healthy sugar. |

Photo credit: Huffington Post

What other names of sugar have you discovered? These aren’t all of them.

Text showing the 50 names of sugar

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  1. Galactose? Wow. I thought that was a Fantastic Four nemesis. Who knew it was ours?

  2. Okay that is interesting, an ingredient label I read yesterday to see if it was alright to eat had Corn Syrup, yet had nothing about sugar. Thank goodness I never ate it, the only reason why I didn’t was because that word “syrup” sounded sweet. I am using the – unsure – don’t eat lol. I am on my 12th day sugar free now, didn’t want to ruin it even by accident!

    1. Thos nutrition labels can be so confusing, well done you for not eating it. If you’re unsure don’t eat it is a great way to think “If in doubt, keep it out” is another one.

  3. Stephanie says:

    Maltodextrin is also a big one being used in everything lately. Maltitol is slightly better but still quite high on the GI.

  4. I’m confused. If the label says 0% sugar you cant trust it? If any of these names are in the label, you can’t have ANY on keto?

    1. You just need to read labels carefully, especially as new low-carb products are coming onto the market. Some will say “refined sugar free” “organic sugars only” “uses only natural sugars” … but they will still have sugar, just not regular table sugar as most of us assume sugar is. Even some sugar free chocolate and low-carb bars have no sugar in them but mention maltitol separately, which is sneaky as it raises blood sugars.

  5. Please can I check – is Maltodextrin a bad choice? It’s in Canderel a sweetener in the UK. Thank you.

  6. Lori Ritchie says:

    What is the best sweetener to use? I am a diabetic but can’t drink coffee without at least sweetener. Of all the sweeteners which is the best choice as far as a keto diet goes? I have used xylitol and it is the closest thing to sugar that I have used.

  7. i thought sorghum was a flour?

    1. Can we eat sorghum on low carb diet?
      Is it an alternative to maize meal?

  8. What about coconut nectar syrup?