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Reports' Lowdown on Low Carb



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SUPERMARKETS are bulging with new low-carb products - and Consumer Reports weighs in on some of the most popular ones in its June issue, giving the lowdown on which work and which hurt.

Two breads got the highest taste-test rating and the magazine's recommendation, while ice creams fared worst, getting a thumbs-down for phony flavor, loads of fat and inflated prices.

Arnold Carb Counting Multi-Grain and Sara Lee Delightful Wheatberry scored "very good" for their "slightly sweet with grain flavor and no off-notes" that "worked very well with toppings." But the lowest carb breads - Food for Life and JoeBread - scored only "fair" for poor flavor and texture.

Thomas' CarbCounting 100% Whole Wheat bagel was deemed "good" with toasted-wheat flavor but a texture more like a soft roll.

The best-rated pastas - Keto spaghetti, Bella Vita Penne rigate and CarbXtract fettuccine - were judged "good." They were a little crumbly, rubbery or dry, but the judges thought sauce may fix that. "Sauce may not help" however, in the case of "fair" Atkins Quick Quisine spaghetti.

Goldenbrook Farms LeCarb Frozen Dessert, Atkins Endulge Super Premium Ice Cream and Breyers Carb Smart Ice Cream suffered from gummy, foamy textures, imitation vanilla flavor and artificial sweetener aftertaste.

Michelob Ultra and Miller Lite beer rated "good" for being similar enough to light domestic brands, though less intense. Rolling Rock Green Light was "good," but slightly sour.

The magazine estimated 930 low-carbohydrate food products have entered the U.S. markets in the last five years, geared toward the 16 percent of American adults who say they're trying to control their weight by counting carbs instead of calories.

But the editors suggest the high calorie and fat content of many of these products might sabotage diets, while the items could be cheating dieters nutritionally.

Copyright 2004 NYP Holdings, Inc. All rights reserved.

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