Sugar Allergy

A few weeks ago we discovered that Courtney is allergic to sugar. That means no sugar, no brown sugar, no corn syrup, and no high-fructose corn syrup at all. And boy were we surprised at how many foods have one of those four kinds of sugar in them. We’ve come to the conclusion that if it is edible, it has sugar.

She tends to get hives and, if the quantity of sugar is high enough, her throat starts to constrict. We’re still trying to figure out if this is a temporary thing, which I originally suspected simply from the speed with which it came on, but we are resigning ourselves to a permanent change in our diets. We also discovered that sudden allergies like hers aren’t really all that uncommon.

I’m doing my best to support her by reducing my sugar intake, but there are still moments where I have a spectacular failure. I have noticed that the effect sugar has on me is more pronounced now than it was even a few weeks ago, and we’re also learning that most of what we loved is still available in modified forms.

But the biggest struggle has been finding a way to get around both of our sweetner problems: Courtney can’t have the real stuff, and I get really bad eczema with the fake stuff. Answer: Honey of course.

Anyway, we are looking for sugar-free ideas that you may have. Particularly, we want cakes and cookies, both things that we love and will sorely miss.

Any ideas?

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78 Responses to Sugar Allergy

  1. Sarah says:

    NO SUGAR?!?! I have never heard of anyone being allergic to sugar. This makes me want to start a race for the cure!


    Can she have fruit? I would just snack on fruit if I were allergic to sugar. That is, unless I couldn’t have fruit.

    I saw a recipe for hot chocolate that calls for honey.

  2. nosurfgirl says:

    I’ve got a recipe book for you. 🙂 A neighbor of ours gave it to us, and I haven’t used it since. But it’s whole purpose is desserts without sugars or artificial sweeteners. If you want it, you can have it.

  3. Laura G says:

    I don’t know much about it, so take this with a grain of salt (…or sugar), but look into food designed for diabetics. I remember there used to be a brand called Frookie that was sweetened with fruit.

  4. Sarah Bailey says:

    Wow, that’s difficult. Have you determined that she has trouble with all sugars (sucrose, fructose, etc)? I think the Franklins here eat pure fructose only. I’m sorry. I’m no sugar expert.

  5. daveloveless says:

    Sarah–Courtney laughed really hard about your “good people” comment.

    Nosurfgirl–yes, we’ll take that cookbook.

    Laura–I’ve heard the same thing. The big problem is that I have problems with artificial sugars, so…. We may just have to go with two separate diets altogether.

    Sarah Bailey–Right now it seems mostly to be processed sugars, so anything like that. Fortunately Courtney is a big fruit lover, but we all know that an apple or orange just doesn’t cut it when your body is scream TRIPLE FUDGE SUNDAE!!!!

    • Susan Tan says:

      Hi, I realized that you have posted on your child’s allergic reaction to sugar some time ago. I just did a google check On sugar allergy and Ig brought me to your posting.

      My daughter who is 5 gets into seizure when takes natural sugar. She is epileptic. She can take other forms of sugar such as fruits, milk.
      I am interested to find out since Courtney is allergic to all forms of sugar , what does she eats? I think I would like to put my daughter on complete no sugar In any from diet.

      Your kind reply is very much appreciated. Pls help. Thanks- susan

  6. Courtney Loveless says:

    Food for diabetics does seem to be just fine, like cookies made by this company called Joseph’s, but then I tend to eat a whole lot of them since they are vaguely sweet. Darn my sweet-tooth!

    Having hives is a lot like having chicken pox for 3-7 days until they subside. I also tend to get several flare-ups from one dose of sugar. The first one happens immediately after eating sugar and the I get a couple more in the following days.

    It also means that sugar-free bread is a must. A store-bought loaf is around $5.00 for a small loaf. $5 FOR BREAD!!! So I’ve been baking bread twice a week instead. Oh, how I suffer! 😀

  7. nosurfgirl says:

    Hey, D&C…

    my neighbor doesn’t have any more of those cookbooks. I’ll keep looking for mine. In the meantime she said you should try Xylitol and stevia. Xylitol is a natural sugar substitute that is made of corn and something else… so it might be problematic. But Stevia is made of the leaves of a certain kind of plant. It tastes different, and it is EXTREMELY sweet so you only need to use a little in recipes, but it can sweeten and it’s said to be actually good for the body. Anyway, my neighbor is pretty dang smart about these things (like, X100 what we know) and so it might be good to look into it.

    I hope you guys are holding up allright without the chocolate, especially. This time of year can be extremely difficult for those of us not imbibing. (Skywalker, too. 20 lbs to go, he says.)

  8. Paul says:

    wow. just catching up on the blogs. Did I tell you that I had an anaphylactic reaction and ended up in the hospital? At first my allergist thought I was reacting to either mango or celery, but now things it was idiopathic anaphylaxis. So I get to carry an eppi-pen with me everywhere I go.

    Do you have to do the same?

  9. muthu says:

    Yes, my frend also had sugar allergy.. Any ideas to cure..

  10. LaShanda says:

    Just came across your post through a google search. After going on an elimination diet recently, I’ve concluded that I have a sugar “intolerance.” I was tested for a sugar “allergy” in the doctor’s office (prick test on my back) and had no reaction. However, if I eat a large amount of sugar (think a couple of large slices of grocery store bakery white cake), I either have diarrhea and/or I wake up the next morning and feel stoned or hung over. Also if I eat anything with corn syrup, high fructose corn syrup, or high levels of sugar, I itch all over my body. I can tolerate sugars from natural fruit and honey….and recently discovered I’m fine with brown rice syrup and agave nectar.

    Good luck to you. I know I was made to feel crazy when I brought up my symptoms to my traditional doctors. The only people who took me seriously were my naturopath and acupuncturist. My allergist tried to put me on a daily prescription of Allegra (cause antihistamines help with the itching/hives) to “increase my quality of life” but my naturopath recommended the food elimination diet and if I wanted it — food intolerance testing.

  11. g says:

    Hi. I have idiopathic anaphylaxis., which has only occurred when eating various candies (guess that’s a good lesson for me…). It happened this weekend after eating about 1/2 a long Tootsie Roll. It has happened in the past with Good n Plenty candy, so I compared ingredients. Sugar and corn syrup are the first 2 ingredients for both candies. After reading about Courtney’s case, I’m more convinced these items are the root of my problem. I can’t remember ever having the anaphylaxis with any food item other than candies, but I’m beginning to think I need to try to avoid these sweeteners in anything. My doctor agrees that sugar and/or corn sweetener may be causing me problems, and wants me to go on Singulair daily. I carry an epi-pen already, but really don’t want to go on daily meds. Any thoughts about this?

  12. Joe says:

    Coconut Bliss is a coconut ice cream (dairy free) which is sweetened with agave nectar. Can she tolerate agave?

  13. Judy says:

    I too think I have an allergy to sugar. My reactions don’t happen immediately but some hours later or the next day depending on how much sugar I have eaten. I don’t get hives but I get itchy all over my body. I first noticed it after a halloween binge. I ate sugar everyday and always seemed to be itchy the more sugar the worse it got. I have never heard of anyone having a sugar allergy before so I decided to just eliminate sugar from my diet to see if that was the cause. I didn’t eat sugar for 2 months and after the first couple of days my symptoms dissappeared. I gave into my cravings and started eating sugar again and sure enough the rashes have started again. I am now convinced after reading your stories that I have a sugar allergy and have to get it out of my diet once and for all.

  14. lucie says:

    better off without sugar; it’s the devil.

  15. April says:

    I have recently confirmed that I have an intolerance to refined sugar. I get extreme fatigue, disorientation, moody, etc. I also have a history of digestive disorders. I can eat natural sweeteners, of which the nustevia brand non-bitter stevia is the closest flavor to sugar I have found – I have chronic yeast problems too so I had to boot the sugar from that. If I more than just a morsel, I get what I would consider feeling drugged. I also wondered in college why they liked to drink so much alcohol, because I never really enjoyed it as I would get an instant headache, back pain, and just not feel well – that’s why. It does run in my family though so perhaps that type of sugar we are truly allergic to. I have never heard of a allergy to all sugars but I suppose anything is possible with allergans these days. Can she eat fruit, since the fructose is natural? How old is she? Old enough for honey? I would go with stevia (although it does contain 1 sugar alcohol).

  16. April says:

    I forgot to mention that I too itch all over with the more sugar that I get. This would typically be a symptom of an allergy, but an inability of the body to break down to sugar would cause all of these same symptoms (referencing a book but I don’t have the name right now). Basically it mimics a diabetic person as it circulates the body until enough time has passed to break it down or pass it. Sugar (not sweeteners, but sugar and corn syrup) are not really able to be used by the body; it’s just so darn good. I’m at the point in my life, turning 30, where I am ready to feel better so I’ll be continuing to make my dietary changes for a healthier and feeling better me!

  17. Courtney Loveless says:

    Wow, I’m so glad to see that I’m not alone with this problem!
    I approached my doctor and described what happened and he said that is sounded like an allergic reaction and he suggested trying an elimination diet, which I did.

    Cane sugars and corn syrup are so far the worst culprits for me. I can tolerate molasses in small quantities, but too much of it triggers the hives and tight throat.

    I’m fine with fruit, 100% fruit juices, honey, and pure maple syrup. Its been a bit of a challenge to alter recipes that require sugar and use honey or maple syrup instead, but I feel a lot better than I used to. I’ve also lost close to 30 pounds.

  18. March says:

    I was born that I can not eat any type of sugurs or syrups, anything that has a sweet taste, from gum, chocolate, anyt type of drinks coke, no fruit at all I have never tasted fruit in my life. If i do sample anything that is sweet my body starts to shake and i start throwing up I have zero tolerance in anything that is sweet. From the day I was born I wonder if anyone is like me that can not eat anything that has sugur. I have a sister who is also like me .

    • Angel says:

      Wow what does your diet consist of then ?? How do you maintain your weight ?? I am a thin person and I believe I have this issue as well. ;-( So any advice is greatly appreciated.

  19. Kay says:

    Since my birth my mother has had a major allergy to sugar. That was back in 1984. They had no clue back then and it took years to figure it out. I was googling recipes when I came across your blog. She has lived with this for 25 years and does great. Fruit juices and apple sauces replace sugar for recipes really well. Keep your head up.

  20. Jen says:

    Hi all! I found your blog from a google search. We just got test results for my 17-year old daughter today. We found a doctor who specializes in nutritional and hormonal testing. She has been a mess and has terrible IBS. She has been getting worse for the last three years and has not been able to attend her senior year of H.S. The blood test checked for delayed onset allergic reactions. All sugars came back positive (along with white rice – which she eats a ton of) and a couple of other things. It is really hitting her hard. I’m going to keep checking back here for more tips.


  21. Sarah L. says:

    I am so excited to have stumbled upon this! I was diagnosed with an allergy to all sugars except for fruit in May, as well as dairy and a bunch of other stuff. Such a bummer! I am dying to get my hands on some recipes that use fruit juice instead of sugar for baking. Does any one know of any?

    Jen, I was in and out of the hospital 10 times in the year before I was diagnosed (I’m 28). Since I have changed my diet, I am completely healthy and feel great. It is a really overwhelming feeling to have to completely change the way you live, but I am sure your daughter will see great results!


  22. Jen says:

    Thanks for your encouragement, Sarah L.

    My daughter showed me this cookbook. I think we’ll try it.

  23. Courtney Loveless says:

    Some of the cookbooks that I’ve found have some good recipes and others are well, pretty awful in fact.

    Another book that I found helpful was the “Desserts to Lower Your Fat Thermostat.” I don’t know the theory behind the diet but almost all of the recipes are sugar free. It has a lot of fruit based recipes and will sometimes use honey.

  24. lolaloves13 says:

    I also get hives when I have too much sugar. I use raw honey I buy directly from the farmer. I had lots of fungal rashes and when I would eat sugar they would get even worse and super itchy. I used a supplement called OPC-3 and took the whole bottle in one month and they have completley gone away. Now I take the recommended dosage. I still get the little bumps if I eat too much still. I also feel so much better without it. Its so hard once you start eating it again to stop. There is great nutritional info on the Weston Price website. Also is Kelly the Kitchen Kop. She has lots of recipes that substitutes sugar with other Natural sweetners. Through these websites I have been able to avoid two surgeries and I have been empowered with the knowledge of how reverse the conditions that I have. Hope I helped someone.

  25. Livi'smom says:

    lolaloves13, thank you for for information on those two websites. I haven’t checked them out yet, but it sounds just like what I’ve been searching for for our 4 yr old.

  26. Gina says:

    I tested positive to be allergic to sugar (delayed onset of reaction) 18 months ago. The only reason I didn’t know I was allergic beforehand is because I was also diagnosed with a dozen other food allergies and it was hard to tell what was causing what reaction. After elimination and rotation (and eventually complete elimination) I figured out that I have zero tolerance to all forms of sugar, except some fruit. No honey, no artificial sweeteners, no fructose, no fun…. On the bright side I have lost 45 pounds but now I have zero energy. Can a person’s body function properly without sugar? In the four months since complete elimination of sugar from my diet, I can barely take the stairs to my apartment. Anybody else have this problem as a result of eliminating sugar from their diet?

  27. Courtney Loveless says:

    Depending on the kind of fruit that you can tolerate, you can make sweet treats with pure frozen fruit juice. We have a good friend who made a cheesecake and sweetened it with white grape juice concentrate. Another friend makes apple pie sweetened with apple juice concentrate.

    There are several cookbooks, mostly at your health food stores, that have sugar free recipes or recipes sweetened with fruit or fruit juice. Good luck!

  28. Mickey says:

    My son would occasionally complain, “My throat feels funny.” He could not describe or explain the feeling, maybe because he has some mild autism.

    One day mom made some peanut butter cookies using artificial brown sugar (aspartame and molasses). My son ate several. During the night he woke up vomiting, with his face broken out in a purple rash, and complaining that his throat felt funny.

    Sine then we have discovered he has zero tolerance for anything with brown sugar or molasses. Even a slice of wheat bread, which the nutrition label says contains less than 2% brown sugar, makes his throat feel funny.

    He doesn’t seem to have any trouble with other kinds of sweets, including honey, orange juice, white sugar or corn syrup.

    Does this sound like a sugar allergy, or maybe something else?

  29. Jen says:

    Hi Mickey,

    The only experience I have with throat things is my own allergic reaction to sulfites. I get anaphylactic shock where my throat swells and starts to close up, I sneeze like crazy, get hives and lots of stomach cramping and diarrhea. I developed this allergy in my early 20’s so it really caught me off guard.

    Some brands of molasses contain sulfites so that might be something to watch for.

    I’d certainly get your son checked for allergies, though. More than just a nuisance, they can be deadly.

  30. lisa says:

    I am so happy to have come across this blog. I thought I had a sugar allergy for a few months now and I was really embarrassed to tell my doctor, I itch so bad every time I eat something with sugar.

    Finally last Thursday I went to her and told her and she said maybe you have a sugar sugar intolerance. I said I always since I was a child had a cupcake here a piece of candy there. She said it could happen. She did a blood test to see what was causing the severe itching. I still have not heard back yet about the bloodwork, but I am convinced now that I definitely have a sugar allergy.

    Does anyone know of a special diet? Also how can you not feel tired or sluggish? As I said above I have not received my bloodwork yet, but I have eliminated sugar in my diet, like no candy, doughnuts, ect. and to be honest I feel moody.

    Thanks all!

  31. Courtney Loveless says:

    Lisa, the moodiness hung on for about a week or so after I gave up sugar. The cravings took a lot longer to subside.

    Honestly, there isn’t really a special diet that you need to follow but if it helps you then go for it. I think there is one called “Clean Eating.” You basically give up all processed foods, which a majority of will have sugar in them, and you eat things like natural fruits, veggies, meats that you cook yourself, and some basic cereals. I’ve found plain oatmeal, which you can spice up with fruit and things like cinnamon, Grapenuts, Cream of Wheat, and Shredded Wheat are good store bought cereals to eat.

    Things like bread are a bit trickier. You really have to check labels when you go shopping. They do make sugar free bread, its uses honey, it just usually costs a lot more and you have to hunt for it. Not every store will carry it.

    As for the sluggishness, talk to your doctor about checking your vitamins and make sure you are getting enough of your B vitamins. I started an extra B vitamin complex and it took about 3-4 days before I noticed a difference and it was great! Lots more energy.

    Good luck and its good to know I’m not alone.

  32. annalisa says:

    have just come across your blog, thanks for putting it out there. i haven’t been able to eat sugar since 1999 – i’m 38 years old, so that’s a large part of my life. i’ve forgotten the taste of it now, and when i do accidentally have anything with sugar, fructose, glucose, lactose, etc, it tastes awful!! having said that, i can eat honey if it’s not produced by sugar fed bees, and have found that a really yummy honey cake can be baked replacing the traditional cup of sugar to one and half cups of honey. hope that helps. would love to hear anymore recipe ideas.

    i also make hot chocolate on cold nights with straight up honey and cocoa and hot water, sounds rather rough but it’s quite yummy – my version of a comfort drink

    good luck with it all!

  33. annalisa says:

    ps mentioned fructose above – i meant concentrated fructose – natural fruits etc are okay for me. symptoms include dizziness, muscle fatigue, severe stomach cramps, shaking (like i’m cold) and a complete inability to function mentally.

    out of interest, and without meaning to sound weird i’d love to know if anyone else has these symptoms – my doctors acknowledge it’s happening, but they can’t tell me why.

    i would love to know if is there anyone else with similar symptoms, if you don’t mind me asking on your blog? (strike this out if it’s not appropriate!)

    it seems that sugars cause so many illnesses in people, and yet it’s use continues to increase in our diets. i find this a very interesting topic!!

    • Gina says:

      Annalisa, I have similar symptoms. The dizziness I experience is from Meniere’s (more specifically, endolymphatic hydrops–too much fluid in the inner ear) but the sugar and other allergies bring on the symptoms. I’m not sure if it caused the Meniere’s or just aggravates it, but it was my ear doc who suspected that allergies were behind my problem to begin with. I also have the muscle fatigue, mental dysfunction and mood swings (not to mention the skin rashes, etc.). I quit sugar cold turkey for 3 months but recently fell off the wagon, so I have confirmed the symptoms yet again. Feel free to email me directly if you would like to further discuss this (

  34. lisa says:

    everyone I also am agergic to all sugars. But I can tolorate VEGETABLE GLYCERIN. You can cook with it too!

  35. fran says:

    Hi All,
    Well somehow comforting to know you are all out there trying to be sugar free. For a long time I did the anti candida approach in the 90’s – felt better but found it hard to maintain. I am also gluten free. But every now and again I retest with some low level of sugar and sometimes get away with it. It’s been many many years of resisting sugar, even stevia is no good but can eat all fruit. Sometimes I get away with a little maple syrup or a rice syryp. About 3000mgs of Vitamin C helps me lower my histamine levels after eating sugar. Unfortunately sweet cravings has never really gone, but certainly sensitised to sweetness in foods.

    I remember having hives from sugar as a kid, got worse in my 30’s and now twenty years on I still get symptoms like hives, headaches, throat and sinus swelling, terrible dryness, muscle and joint pain within hours. Are many of you allergic or intolerant of gluten too- I think this damaged my gut for many years (leaky gut problem) which may worsen the problem of over active immune response to foods in general (except fruit and vegetables).
    Positive side of it all – easier to keep weight off.
    Cheers Fran

  36. Jo says:

    Hi all,

    Thanks for this thread – its always a relief to find others are going through the same thing (even through I wish that none of us were).

    In response to annalisa – you should read The Sugar Blues by William Dufty. Ever wondered why the witch-hunting thing started? Sugar. The root of every major war since the last of the crusades? Sugar. American independence? Sugar.

    For those trying to give up sugar, Potatoes not Prozac by Kathleen Desmaisons explains *why* you crave sugar and provides a brilliant plan for eliminating the cravings altogether (the key is to eliminate all ‘white’ things from your diet and get away from the suggary end of the food spectrum altogether so that temptation doesn’t even come close).

    Hope this helps. Good luck to all. Sugar ruins lives – spread the word! : )

    Jo xxx

  37. Canadiangurl says:

    All my life I have zero tolorance for sugur I mean I can not eat anything that is sweet. Since the day I was born I can not eat or drink anything that has sugur at all. I inheritated from my grandfather who was also like this. When i see my friends drinking soft drinks to eatting fruit or enjoying ice cream I just couldn’t eat or drink any of these foods. I wish I was born that I can eat anything sweet but unfortuntely god made me this way. I do envy people who can.. I just sit and watch them eat. If I do try anything that has sugur I get really sick where my body starts to shake and I throw up. My body won’t accept it at all not sure if anyone else it like me. I’m married now but thank god my kids are not like me. They do eat sugur but hopefully when they do get married have kids I do hope they are not like me. I envy al the people who do eat sweets.

  38. chloe says:

    I found this by chance as I had stopped all refined sugar eating and nearly zero alcohol since August this year… then made a few birthday cakes for friends during those months and had a few slices without a problem. I went back to my diet program and suffered nothing more than low grade indigestion. I am vegan and started a raw food and fruit/veggie juices low fat diet and lost 28 pounds. Then the dreaded Christmas came and I LOST CONTROL completely and have eaten pounds of chocolates, christmas pudding (vegan)jellies etc etc… then I got the worst all over body itching and slight palpitations,just like many have described here. I have considered myself a life long sugar addict, have suffered IBS for much of my life and spasms in my colon. I now feel a lot of these problems were caused by sugar. I noticed that when I drank a veggie juice every day (will be back on that regime tomorrow!) that my cravings quickly became a thing of the past, and my vitality went up. I feel this will be my last sugary Christmas ever. I will use date syrup, maple, rice and agave VERY occasionally and sparingly in future. My skin is so much softer, I look so much better for the weight loss. It’s so not worth it just to eat a sweet.

  39. Peaches says:

    Hi daveloveless

    Simple: Use 100% Pure Maple Sugar!

  40. Peaches says:

    Hi daveloveless

    Sorry I mean Maple Syrup above.

  41. daveloveless says:

    Yep, we figured out that maple syrup makes a good substitute. The cheapest one that we like is honey. We’ve tried agave, which is okay but very expensive.

  42. Tim says:

    Try agave! We have the same sugar allergy in our home. I’ve become a creative cook and don’t miss the sugar at all.

  43. Jen says:

    @Tim – Do you have any bread maker recipes that use agave instead of sugar? My daughter is also allergic to soy and dairy so we make her bread at home. She has been using powdered fructose instead of the sugar but I’d much rather see if we could substitute agave nectar.

  44. Jen, I also make my own bread at home and use honey instead of sugar. A good rule of thumb for using both agave and honey is this: if the recipe calls for 1 cup of sugar, use 1/2 cup of honey or agave. In recipes like bread, which call for 1-2 tablespoons of sugar, you can substitute an equal measure of honey or agave.

    It does make your batters a little runnier but it still bakes just fine. Honey will make your baked goods brown faster, so keep an eye on them and cover during the last half of baking if needed.

  45. Ian says:

    Wow, it seems many people suffer from a sugar intolerance/allergy. I’ve been suffering from a sugar intolerance for about 7 years now, only figured out it was sugar 4 years ago. It wouldn’t be so bad if it wasn’t a hindrance on my social life. I can’t go out for a drink which is a massive past time in most peoples lives.

    I can’t sugar of any kind. That includes fruit. I try not to eat it but then birthdays come round, christmas comes etc. When i eat sugar, 2/4 days later I get these amber coloured spots on my face which then turn red and get itchy, then they heal and the skin flakes. This whole process takes about 8/10 days after eating sugar.

    I don’t want to have to avoid sugars, I want a cure. I’m determined to find a cure, so far i’ve done some liver cleanses and detoxifications because there was stage in my life where I ate so much sugar you would not believe, so I believe that was the thing that started this intolerance. I also believe it’s my liver that has been damaged.

    So far nothing has worked and if anything my conidition seems to get worse but i’m not sure.

    Anyway, I hope to find a cure because there’s no way i’ll live the rest of my life like this. So there’s my two cents.

    • mathews says:

      Of all the blogs your symptoms fit exactly as mine. My doctor says its sugar allergy but didnt suggest any medication other than treating the symptoms The coloured spots gets infectious sometimes and i have to take antibiotics- thats when i do take sugar or fruits testing myself occasionally. Incidentally i had IBS years back but got treated and is under sort of control- thinking of going to some allergy clinic. would appreciate i fyou will keep in touch. Thanks, Mathews

  46. Jen says:

    I’m curious if anyone with sugar sensitivity has also noticed issues with white rice or white potatoes? My daughter has sensitivity to all three (along with dairy, soy and some other less intrusive foods). So far she is okay with pastas and breads but it seems odd that rice, potatoes and sugar are all culprits.

    • Ian says:

      I have noticed issues with potatoes. I think it’s because potatoes are very starchy and starch gets broken down into sugar within the body. That’s what I understand anyway. With rice I’ve had no issue but again I think rice is also slightly starchy.

  47. Aurora says:

    wow! I’m so glad to read this and see that I’m not alone… google brought almost nothing up. I get so itchy when I eat sugar and I get bad headaches. I get headaches and somewhat but much less itchy from maltitol too. Splenda makes me react a little too! Fruit doesn’t make me itch so bad but it gives me a headache unless I balance it with lots of fat. The only sweetener that tastes good and doesn’t make me itch is Truvia which is a mixture of stevia and erythritol. I don’t react well to most carbs… pasta and bread especially but I’m okay with rice and potatoes. People think I’m so weird when I say that I have a sugar intolerance and they’re always like “are you sure?” lol. When I was growing up, I drank soda all day every day and then I thought I was making a good decision to switch to juice but I gained a ton of weight. When I was 15 I weighed 189 at 5’5″. Just cutting out the fruit juice only, I got down to 150 within months with no other efforts and I maintained that for 7 years. I’m hoping that having cut out sugar and fruit completely will get my weight down even further down.

  48. Kristin says:

    I’ve had hives for the last 4 months…headaches too…sore joints and bloating. I think I may have a gluten intolerance…so I have cut that out but I am still getting the hives and the headaches but my stomach feels better. I’ve tried changing and eliminating almost everything and this morning I decided to try sugar and I found this site. I am eager to know what is causing all this…the drs have not been a whole lot of help yet. I am going to a GI doctor next week to hopefully get a gluten test. This all came on pretty sudden and I am 31. Glad to know there are others out there too.

  49. utkarsh says:

    jaggery maybe .. though not sure if it’s available locally !!

    they did have sweets and stuff before 500 odd years, when refined sugar was not even discovered.

    and (may be) if you can get your hands on it, you can even add sugar cane juice to some preparations

    i read on someone’s post that even dental problems would not happen before refined sugar. reason was stated that body can understand natural products, but it’s the refined ones that can possibly confuse it.

  50. Gina says:

    Oddly enough, I tolerate refined sugar way better than the purer forms (things made with cane syrup). Right now, with all the pollen in the air, I do not tolerate anything–fruit included. I will live with the rashes until my stomach rebels (which has already started). Then I will go on a no-sugar (and no garlic, no onion, no milk, etc.) diet until my immune system can recover from all the other allergies I cannot control.

  51. Shelley says:

    I have some of the same symptoms. But the worst is waking up feeling swollen and very congested, my eyes as well. Do you all ever feel that way?

  52. Monika says:

    I think a about a year ago, I was the third person to report sugar allergy on this blog. Its amazing to see so many people have reported similar reactions since. I get hives and am itchy all over and my ears, lips, face swell up (typical allergic reaction) after I eat sugar. For the past several months I have just learnt to avoid sugar. Fortunately nothing happens if I eat sugar free icecream or cookies. I generally do not react to fruits. So I have been able to keep the allergic reactions at bay. But, the medical community needs to realize that this is indeed real and hopefully work towards a cure.

  53. Linde says:

    The way I started to react to sugar was mucus in my throat (pnd) didn’t know what was causing it and was so desperate one night I called out to God to show me what it was….He answered and said ‘sugar’. It seems lactose, fructose, sucrose, the sugar in grain etc all affect me. I eat very small amounts of sugar such as a raspberry, blueberry and unripe banana smoothie and a low gi piece of ancient grain bread as well as veges of course. I lost weight but energy wise I feel great!! The mucus never goes away but I do manage it. Pototoes and rice are nooooo good.
    I’m thanking God that He is in charge of my life and He gives me the grace to handle it or indeed will heal me of this affliction (I’m asking for that). With the constant mucus in my throat and the hhmmming my vocal folds have been affected and I sound like I have a constant headcold……that is very annoying!!!
    people always say ‘are you sick’ I say no its caused by an allergy and often they will want to know what to? when I tell them sugar they are very surprised and say ‘wow’ never heard of that!!

  54. Tara Watt says:

    I found this thread while looking to see if there is such a thing as allergy to sugar. I don’t eat very many processed foods because I have celiac disease, so I don’t get tons of sugar in my diet. But I’ve noticed that when I eat chocolate chips, my asthma is triggered within a few minutes. I start coughing and having difficulty breathing. It happened again tonight. I don’t seem to have the same problem with maple syrup, which is a sweetener I use fairly often. After reading all of your stories, I’m going to try to eliminate refined sugar from my diet for awhile and see if my breathing improves.

  55. davinci says:

    sugar allergy does existing, before when ever i eat sugar i will inflamation on my respiratory tract, urination inflammation and my body would itch whever i have any food which have sugar. i have consult numerous GP about the this condition, non of the doctor where able to help me. after i i have notice that this condition show up whenever i have sugar the condition re-surface, so i have decided to stop eating such food, and i have never experience those condition.

  56. Lottie says:

    I have had chronic severe urticaria (hives) for 10 months now. I found out early on that saliclylates made me worse but I was still rashing and had no idea why until it occurred to me that I am allergic to refined sugar.
    Have you tried fructose (fruit sugar) and xylitol (plant sugar)? As these two I’m fine with and taste great in cakes etc! But honey is very high in Salicylates so I can’t touch the stuff. She should still be able to eat fruit unless she is salicylate sensitive like me and berries are off the menu.
    The sugar cravings are hard at first but after a couple of weeks I stopped wanting sweet foods altogether! Was munching on pomegranate yesterday and that was heaven!
    I Suggest making your own food as any processed food is full of sugar, preservatives, E numbers etc and not worth taking the risk.
    Good luck on your quest.

  57. nancieteresa says:

    Greetings! Good luck with your adventure of no sugar! I took sugar out of my diet in an attempt to balance my mood. I found that it made a big difference. Not whenever I get a drop of sugar I notice it my body immediately like quickfire! As sugar replacements I use honey. You can also sweeten in recipes with orange juice, orange zest, apple juice, apple sauce. Also I find dates are wonderfully satisfying for my sweet cravings. They taste delicious and luxurious. I don’t feel like I’m missing a thing. Have fun. It’s not so bad! 😉

  58. B Foster says:

    I have struggled for the past several years with what I thought were pre-menapausal hormone induced mood swings, night sweats as well as early AM stomach and intestinal discomfort (4 AM onwards) and an all day feeling on nausea around food. After several allergy tests, an endoscopy, a colonoscopy and a prescription of Prilosec, nothing has been conclusive other than the one common denomiator – sugar, including honey. This seems to include all sugars at first until I have completely elimnated it,then I am able to add fruit sugar only (like dates to my sugar free muesli). Just when I think I have gotten sugar out of system, a freshly baked cookie appears and I stupidly I don’t resist it because I feel well at the time. Once sugar gets reintroduced into my body, it is hard to resist, and I am quickly reminded why I souldn’t eat sugar when I get night sweats or a mood swing brought on by the effect sugar has on my hormones not to mention the horrible intestinal discomfort. I think that sugar is an additive poison that is an acceptable form of commerce much like alcohol and tabacco have been.
    I don’t think subsituting works, so I pitifully attempt, week after week to abstain and then pick my poison when I just can resist – yep, that hot fudge sundae! But it takes a couple of weeks to feel completely normal again, it’s as though my intestines have to repair themselves? I wish you great health and the appreciation of it – happy living.

  59. Irene says:

    All my life, I have had sores and I itch all the time. I have had test after test, biopsies and injections. The cause was never determined, until I started elminating things from my diet. First, I stopped drinking coffee (lots of sugar)sodas, and then all sweets-except fruit. Now my skin is clearing and I feeel so much better.

    Now I am looking for something to help clear the scars left by the rash.

  60. angeladecker says:

    Hey Dave, I don’t know if you’re still in the market for ideas, but my company (Cedar Fort) has some published cookbooks specifically for food allergies and healthy eating. The links are rather long, so instead go to, click “books” (on the left), click “cookbooks,” and then click “healthy.” These are the books: “Eat Free: No Gluten. No Sugar. No Guilt” and “Allergy Free Cookbook for the Family.” I can’t remember if you’re into dutch oven, but we have LOTS of those books too.

  61. angeladecker says:

    Also, I saw someone comment that the medical community needs to develop a cure, but I would have to say it’s a problem we should provide a fence for at the top of the cliff instead of an ambulance at the bottom: we need to cut back on processed foods. Nutrients are stripped out and then added back in, but since they’re not naturally there, they don’t work as well in our bodies. I still rely on processed foods for my food storage because I don’t can, but I at least avoid the cheapest options and trans fat (aka “partially hydrogenated” anything: poison because it travels through your body as a solid and can easily clog things like vital arteries).

    • daveloveless says:

      I love that analogy, and I totally agree. Not to disparage anyone, but it does seem like a lot of people would rather have a cure that fixes the problems that we’ve created for ourselves than taking the steps to not have the problems in the first place.

      I think debt could be substituted for sugar in your analogy as well.

  62. helen says:


  63. Gayle says:

    I am allergic to sugar too but my symptoms are very different. I find that agave is the one sweetener I tolerate. Also. There are a number of blogs with recipes that use bananas or pumpkin or raisins or dates as their sweeteners. Chocolate covered Katie is my favorite! I have a number of others bookmarked. Let me know if u are interested & I’ll post another reply with the links.

  64. Michele L says:

    I have discovered that I am allergic to sugar. I get hives all over my body when I eat sugar. I seem to be able to tolerate fruit and use agave as a sweetener. But I have definitely cut back on sweets. Lost 12 lbs, and I feel great. But I still get hives. Not completely cured. But I see I may also have to cut out wheat, and go Paleo all the way. That is my next goal. Thanks for this article. Glad to know I am not the only one.

  65. Andrea says:

    Hi, I know this post was back in 2009 but my 8 month old was diagnosed with a white sugar allergy yesterday. If you are free for 5 minutes I would love to hear how you are getting on with the diet and any ideas of how I can start would be amazing. He is also dairy free. Thanks in advance, Andrea

    • daveloveless says:

      First, good luck. It has been really hard for us, but worth it when we are good. Courtney’s allergy seems to have faded and along with it the motivation. But we can feel it in our bodies when we are good (or bad). The biggest piece of advice I can give is to learn all the different names for sugar and then study those ingredient labels. You CAN find ways to do just about anything sugar free. Oh, and stay miles away from the fake stuff. That stuff is nasty! Honey, agave.. I’m sure I’m missing a few…. Those are great. We became beekeepers to help get honey at a good price, and the health benefits of raw, local honey are incredible. Store bought honey, especially from China, often has corn syrup mixed in, so beware.
      And make this a family thing. Your body will thank you. Good luck!

  66. Andy Dufrane says:

    Thanks everyone! I am currently on an elimination diet and my hives are strong as before I started. Now, sugar is next to be eliminated.

  67. Lauren : Australia says:

    I’m 34 and only just in the past two years have had issues related to sugar. Stevia made my hands and legs paralyse and gave me terrible gastrointestinal issues. I come out in hives, sweat, instant headaches and body aches when I consume sugar, raw sugar, brown sugar, artificial sweetners, and even coconut sugar, agave nectar.
    However what I CAN EAT: sugar, fresh fruit and dried fruit. It makes me realise how sensitive my body is to the fake crap that food is mainly made up of.
    My son also reacts with asthmatic problems when he consumes sugar and was hospitalised on a regular basis until we did and elimination diet and the dr said, yes it is sugar which is affecting his body, and swelling his trachea and inhibiting his ability to breathe.

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