When four boxes of a new product called Magic Spoon arrived at my door last month, I remembered the last time I purchased cereal in bulk — it was the Costco supply of Fiber One I brought to college, thinking it would give me immunity from the freshman 15 when really all it gave me was a fart problem.
But even for someone who’s since caught on to insidious food marketing, Magic Spoon seemed enticing. The pastel-streaked packaging was very neo–Lisa Frank, and the nutrition facts promised keto-friendliness — I’m a friend of keto — with only three grams of net carbs per half-cup serving (in addition to high protein; no gluten, grains, soy, or wheat; and a pretty pronounceable ingredients label).
kinetic sand as it stuck to the inside of my teeth (somehow not in a bad way). Then, an hour or two later, I waited for it to give me a hunger spike, as cereals also tend to do. Except this one did not. I continued with the experiment for 14 almost-consecutive days, alternating among the four flavors, always with a bit of hemp milk (my favorite), sometimes with a portion size of more like two cups. The result? I almost never thought of food again until lunchtime.
granolas, though compared to an ordinary box of high-carb cereal, yes, it’s about twice as expensive.
According to the box, the “magic” in Magic Spoon is a “rare sugar” named allulose, “found in raisins, figs, and maple syrup.” It tastes and feels like regular sugar but with only a tenth of the calories and — because it is not metabolized by your body (most of it comes out in your urine) — none of the elevated blood-sugar levels. The FDA made an unprecedented ruling last month to the effect that allulose no longer needed to be counted toward the total sugar on the ingredients panel, in part because “it produces negligible effects on blood glucose and insulin.”
studies in which allulose appeared to lower insulin levels, with some of the data suggesting that allulose might compete with the glucose in your gut and block it from being absorbed into your blood, but those studies mainly involve dogs and rats. The few human studies have encompassed only tiny groups of test subjects. “Twenty patients are not enough to say that this is a significant result,” Salas-Whalen notes.
other sugar substitutes have after the initial excitement. In the meantime, I couldn’t help but order another shipment (available exclusively on Magic Spoon’s website; its founders, incidentally, pivoted from a prior venture selling cricket-based energy bars). Sure, there are reasons not to go all in on allulose, but sometimes — especially within certain parameters that give you the illusion of control — it’s nice to feel young again. Plus, it’s not like you can eat sardines every day.
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