I have seen this topic come up from time to time with no real evidence to prove things one way or another, I hope this thread will help someone else out as well as me and mine. I do understand that beer/sugar + substitutes do not effect ALL diabetics the same, as such I am not responsible for YOUR health.
Last year my wife was diagnosed with diabetes. She is able to control it for now with diet and exercise. Part of this diet, she decided after multiple blood tests, that beer was causing her to have large sugar spikes. She loves craft beer and has had VERY few since then. She now drinks Jones Zilch Pomegranate and vodka on the rocks.
I researched and read up on some older tests done with diabetics and alternate sugars as well as held very in-depth technical questions with a nutritionist about different sugars, sugar substitutes and how these effect both diabetics and non-diabetics alike normally. (I was a PITA I am sure.)
Time elapses and I find myself reading on how to convert grains like corn without the use of barley using an enzyme found in saliva (I believe it is called chicha or something similar) A few recipes later and I find a brewer that uses Amylase Enzyme or AE which is very similar to the enzyme in saliva that breaks apart long chain sugars into simple, fermentable sugars.
I have read that Beano is NOT the same as AE and will never stop breaking the sugar chain where AE will eventually stop. I also discovered that AE becomes "inert" or is destroyed in the boil. For my purposes I have decided to use only AE.
I plan to use AE in a lower gravity beer. Starting gravity of about 1.046 as an example. Then add AE into my standard mash and into the runnings and allow the runnings to "rest" while the next runnings are collected, I will refer to this as an AE rest. (I batch sparge
) I let the last runnings rest as well for 30 minutes.
I drew up some conclusions and approached my wife with the idea of making a diabetic friendly beer. She was excited and has volunteered to take blood readings when she tries these beers with a "low carb food intake day" as if we were planning to have some drinks & fun that day.
The 1st 2 beers I have already brewed and are being carbed up now. The wife is very excited to try these beers.
The 1st beer is an "Irish Stout" nothing fancy but I thought I would attempt to counter the effects of the AE with a little Lactose. While "not to style typically" I only added a very small amount of Lactose and it seems to have done pretty well at "back sweetening" the stout to where it seems normal. It also adds a tiny bit of creaminess to it which I am hoping will make it seem like it was closer to being on a nitro tap.
IMO it does not taste or resemble what I would call a "Milk Stout". Lactose in studies does not seem to raise blood sugar levels.
The 2nd beer is my "end of the year IPA" you know the one where you throw in all sorts of hop remnants and such. I was going to back sweeten this one with Xylitol but it really does not need it. Xylitol is Sugar Alcohol and can be eaten by diabetics, many sugar-free candy is made this way. This is my "ace in the hole" so to speak. When I create a beer that is "to dry" I will back sweeten with either of these 2 sugar substitutes or even a combo of them.
The warm flat samples were no joke and I am not be able to tell the difference from a non-diabetic friendly counterpart, at least at this point.
I will report back either after this weekend or the next, depending on when she wants to try it. (I will be having some on this weekend to see if it is carbed up.) FWIW I also force carb in kegs for this.
I am now planning future brews with the AE rest in mind. I am thinking about a Pilsner malt, Aramis hop, French Saison yeast SMaSH. Instead of adding in table sugar the AE should do the same but be better for me and my wife???
I do not think I would try a RIS this way but I think there are many styles that could really benefit from this.
Any thoughts??? Anyone else ever try this? or use AE in this way?