One final update from the AADE Annual Meeting a few weeks ago: there are always lots of folks pushing special "diabetic-friendly" foods at these events. I usually steer clear of that kind of stuff in favor of "real food." But then again, I have occasionally discovered some interesting edibles I wouldn't have known about otherwise. This year:

* Solo GI Bars -- these seem to be the newest thing in "low-glycemic" nutrition bars, marketed with theSolo_bar tagline "spike your taste buds, not your blood sugar" (athletes eat 'em, too!). They pack in about 26g of carb, 17g of which is sugar, plus 4g of fiber and 11g of protein per bar -- which doesn't sound all that low-GI. But the company did win the "Golden Egg Award" a few years ago for "The Most Innovative Product from The Specialty Nutrition Group." Apparently they achieve slow absorption with a magic mix of good carbs, proteins and dietary fats. All I can tell you from personal experience is that they taste pretty damn good. I tried the Chocolate Charger, Berry Bliss, and Peanut Power flavors.

* NutriSoda -- the new zero-sugar, zero-aspartame, zero-sodium and zero-to-few-calories soda that "appeals to fashion, foodie and health-conscious consumers." This must have something to do with theNutrisoda_cans_3 aromatherapy-ish branding, i.e. colorful cans with flavor names like Radiant, Calm, and Immune, not to mention Slender and Energize. When it comes to diabetes, the company is making some pretty big claims: NutriSoda can help improve insulin resistance, balance blood glucose and aid in carb metabolism, aid in tissue healing, and reduce oxidative inflammation. Wow!! I can't really vouch for those powers, except to note that NutriSoda sponsors Type 1 triathlete Jay Hewitt, who I know is a good guy and stands behind his choice of sponsors. Anyway, with all the flack about diet sodas virtually killing us, I'm glad to know there's a healthy(ier) alternative to be had. Vanilla_stevia_2

* Stevia, in many forms -- a company called SweetLeaf was showcasing this all-natural sweetener in packet form, tabs, clear liquid for baking, and even as concentrate in dropper-bottles in flavors like English toffee, Valencia orange, and chocolate raspberry. To be fair, another company called NuNaturals I ran into a while back offers similar products, and they've been showering me with samples (thank you!) I've gotten pretty hooked on their Vanilla Stevia Extract. Mainstream chemical sugar substitutes? I will never go back.

* Walden Farms caramel dip -- no carbs, no fat, no calories... is it just a hologram, or what? In fact, I was so entranced trying to detect an actual taste that I got scolded for double-dipping my apple slice. (Oops! It was just that I didn't want to eat yet another piece of apple without dosing anyCaramel_dip insulin...) They also have marshmallow and chocolate dips. Made with Splenda, some cellulose materials, and xantham gum. But the flavoring is all-natural. You know what? Some days I'm so desperate for caramel that I could eat several tubs of this stuff. Might go well with my usual "pretend" dessert, cool whip "lube" (Thanks alot, Wired!)

Seriously, what do YOU do when you just have to have something sweet? Eat the real thing and attempt to dose, or opt for some fave fake-o pretending-it's-actually-dessert solution? Inquiring PWDs want to know...

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This content is created for Diabetes Mine, a consumer health blog focused on the diabetes community. The content is not medically reviewed and doesn't adhere to Healthline's editorial guidelines. For more information about Healthline's partnership with Diabetes Mine, please click here.