De Villiers Chocolate no added sugar range

De Villiers Chocolate’s new no added sugar offering is now available. We get the lowdown on this new product.

Research indicates that indulgent purchases in comfort food, like chocolate, have increased during lockdown, and now De Villiers Chocolate, one of Africa’s first bean-to-bar chocolate brands, is making it even easier to find comfort.

At a time when consumers can all do with some guilt-free pleasure in their lives, this proudly South African chocolate brand has made one of the world’s most craved foods more accessible, by not adding sugar, dairy or gluten.

Years of experimentation

After years of experimentation on no added sugar options, De Villiers Chocolate is now officially the first South African chocolate brand to develop a wholly plant-based, keto, and Internationally Vegan Certified chocolate bar. The most unconventional bar in the De Villiers Chocolate range to date.

“We have been trying to perfect a no added sugar De Villiers Chocolate option for several years, but we couldn’t get it quite right. While there are many no added sugar chocolates on the market catering to health-conscious consumers, people with diabetes and those following the ketogenic and low-carb diets, most of the available options are a cheerless substitute for the real deal.  The most common downsides one usually associates with these products is the unpleasant aftertaste left by many of the sugar replacers, as well as unwanted gastrointestinal side effects. Then there is also the undesirable spiking of blood glucose levels,” says Master Chocolate Maker and owner, Pieter de Villiers.

Giving the consumers what they want

De Villiers Chocolate makes all its chocolate and inclusions in its factory just outside Paarl, near Cape Town. Their chocolate is made using cocoa beans sourced sustainably from farmers in Western Uganda. The bars are recognised by their colourful labels and loved by consumers for their moreish taste. Though many have been hoping for an option that is equally indulgent, but less ‘sinful’.

De Villiers Chocolate no added sugar range

Having worked tirelessly during South Africa’s lockdown period to perfect a no added sugar chocolate range, this chocolate brand is now ready to spill the (cocoa) beans, and share the joy.

“In our mission to develop a wholesome chocolate range, we refused to compromise on the flavour and texture of our bars,” says Pieter. “After extensive research, we finally landed on the right combination of ingredients to use in our no added sugar range, without compromising on flavour or wholesomeness.”

The secret? A curated blend of erythritol, monk fruit and soluble corn fibre; ingredients which have been carefully selected for their unique ability to mimic the sensory profile of sugar without causing any unwanted side effects. Without any milk or grain content, these bars are also suitable for lactose and gluten intolerant chocolate lovers.

To ensure that consumers can rely on these bars to be as good as they taste, De Villiers Chocolate worked with research consultant, Dr Lindie Schloms, who performed research on sugar alternatives to help the brand develop this diabetic- and keto- friendly chocolate range.

For Dr Lindie Schloms, it’s all about the development of healthier products by including antioxidant-rich superfoods, botanicals and adaptogens and reducing harmful ingredients, such as gluten and sugar.

Consumers will also appreciate that these bars carry International Vegan Certification, are Keto Certified and registered with the Rainforest Alliance in support of a mandate to do no harm and to ensure a better future for the planet and its people.

Spoilt for choice

Further cause for celebration is that consumers are spoilt for choice too, with Dark Chocolate and Nut Butter options. Chocolate enthusiasts can take their pick from 70% Dark Chocolate or Salt and Seed Dark Chocolate, as well as a range of nut-butter chocolate bars made entirely from scratch, using ingredients prepared and made in the De Villiers Chocolate kitchen. These include Sea Salt and Caramel Nut Butter, Chocolate Cookie Nut Butter (yes, also gluten free!), Almond Pieces Nut Butter, Cashew Nut Butter, Hazelnut Nut Butter and Coconut Nut Butter.


What makes De Villiers Chocolate’s no added sugar options different than other brands?

While there are several no added sugar chocolates on the market to cater for health-conscious consumers, people with diabetes and those following the ketogenic diet, most of the available options are not nearly as palatable as one would like. They often leave a bitter aftertaste, include ingredients other than sugar that still cause blood glucose levels to spike, or cause unwanted gastrointestinal side effects.

Since De Villiers Chocolate didn’t want to settle for any of that, extensive research was done to find the right combination of ingredients to use in the no added suagr range, to tick all the boxes without compromising on taste.

The brand-new range is not only keto certified, but also vegan and sweetened with a curated blend of erythritol, monk fruit and soluble corn fibre. What is erythritol?

Erythritol is a sugar alcohol (polyol) that occurs naturally in fruits, such as melons, grapes and pears. It’s 70% as sweet as sugar, contains almost no calories (0 to 0,24 kcal/g) and has a zero glycaemic index.

Erythritol is considered to be one of the best sugar substitutes for people with diabetes and those on the ketogenic diet since it doesn’t increase blood glucose levels at doses of 20-64g. De Villiers chocolates contain only 16g erythritol per 80g bar.

How does erythritol differ from other sugar alcohols?

Erythritol is well-tolerated. It has the highest digestive tolerance of all the sugar alcohols, and long-term consumption of high amounts of erythritol hasn’t been associated with any serious side effects.

Unlike other sugar alcohols, which are fermented by bacteria in the colon and produce gas as a by-product, ± 90% of ingested erythritol is absorbed into the bloodstream before it reaches the colon. Since humans don’t have the enzymes required to break it down, erythritol can’t be metabolised and is excreted completely unchanged in the urine. The remaining 10% of erythritol, which is not absorbed into the bloodstream, travels undigested and unfermented through the colon.

The new range contains a variety of nuts, all boasting major health benefits. In other words, guilt-free chocolate?

Nuts are great for people with diabetes since they are low in carbohydrates and rich in healthy fats, fibre, protein, antioxidants, vitamins and minerals. Nuts, such as almonds, have also been shown to increase insulin sensitivity and reduce the rise in blood glucose levels after meals.

Almonds are one of the best dietary sources of vitamin E, a powerful antioxidant which helps to support immune-, heart- and skin health, while cashews have been linked to benefits like weight loss, improved blood glucose control and heart health.

Did you know that hazelnuts, for example, provide significant amounts of antioxidants protecting the body from oxidative stress?

To purchase this no added sugar chocolate, visit the De Villers Chocolate online store

Dry skin conditions

We learn more about dry skin conditions that are characterised by dry skin, and how to manage dry skin.

The cause of dry skin

Dry skin is a very common condition and often results in visits to dermatologists. Symptoms vary according to the severity of dryness, but skin can be tight and rough and/or prone to itching, scaling, flakiness and redness. In extreme cases, skin is pathologically dry.

The main reason for skin dryness is an impaired skin barrier function which results from:

  • A lack of lipids that help to protect skin from moisture loss.
  • A deficit of urea and natural moisturising factors (NMFs) which bind moisture into the skin.

The skin is not only the body’s largest organ but also plays a vital role in regulating body temperature and acts as a barrier protecting the body against infection.

However, dry body skin that is cracked can lose its ability to perform these functions. A good skin care routine using products formulated specifically for rough and cracked skin, like Eucerin UreaRepair PLUS, can help to restore skin to a healthy state.

The causes of rough and cracked, dry skin vary from poor skin care and environmental factors to health-related conditions, such as atopic dermatitis (eczema) and diabetes.

Symptoms of dry skin

  • Extreme tightness
  • Extreme roughness
  • Skin cracks or fissures
  • Intense itching

Different types of dry skin conditions

Xerosis cutis is the medical term for abnormally dry skin. This name comes from the Greek word “xero” which means dry.

Psoriasis is a chronic, recurrent inflammatory skin disorder. The most common type is psoriasis vulgaris, characterised by slightly elevated reddish patches or papules covered with silvery white scales.

Ichthyosis vulgaris is a rare inherited skin condition that is characterised by extremely dry skin. It produces large scales in the skin that can resemble fish scales.

Keratosis pilaris is a common, harmless skin condition. It causes small, hard bumps that may make your skin feel like sandpaper. They usually appear on your upper arms, thighs, and buttocks, sometimes with redness or swelling


Diabetes mellitus is a chronic disease caused by inherited and/or acquired deficiency in production of insulin by the pancreas, or by the ineffectiveness of the insulin produced. It is very common for people living with diabetes to have dry skin.

The best way to treat dry skin

In 2018, a group of renowned physicians published a medical paper on the Diagnosis and Treatment of Xerosis cutis. The report summarises the latest research findings in the prevention, diagnosis and treatment of dry skin and gives doctors’ practical advice on how best to treat the condition.

The medical paper states that dry skin can, in principle, be treated effectively. The decisive factor in the effectiveness of dry skin treatment is choosing the appropriate care product.

Moisturising should involve a combination of hydrating and lipid-replenishing ingredients, formulated to restore the skin’s natural barrier function in the best possible way and prevent skin from drying out further.

Urea –  Gold standard treatment  

The paper explains that “based on the available scientific data, urea is the gold standard for the therapy of xerosis cutis.1

Urea has the advantage of being effective on two fronts; as a natural moisturising factor, it binds moisture into the outermost layers of skin. Plus, it also supports desquamation which is the natural process by which skin sheds dead skin cells. Healthy desquamation is linked to smooth skin.

The Diagnosis and Treatment of Xerosis cutis paper also explains that when urea is combined with other moisturising ingredients and lipids, the effect is even better. It states, “The combination of urea with ceramides, NMF and glycerol shows a significantly better effect than the effect of urea or the vehicle alone.2

Eucerin UreaRepair PLUS

Eucerin scientists were the first to effectively include urea in a dermo-cosmetic product, and now have more than 25 years’ experience of maximising the benefits of urea in skincare formulas. Experience that includes more than 30 clinical and dermatological studies, involving 10 000 volunteers.

The lotions and creams in the Eucerin UreaRepair PLUS range offer people with dry skin exactly what the independent expert paper recommends.

The formulas include:

  • Various concentrations of urea (ranging from 5% to 10%).
  • Other natural moisturising factors (NMFs), ceramides and gluco-glycerol.
  • The range is clinically and dermatologically proven to offer immediate and 48hour dry-skin relief.3

For more information please visit


  1. Augustin M et al., Diagnosis and Treatment of Xerosis Cutis. JDDG, July 2018: Suppl 4, Volume 16.
  2. Weber TM et al., J Clin Aesthet Dermatol 2012, 5:29–39.
  3. Beiersdorf. Data on file.

MiaoMiao2 Smart Reader for FreeStyle Libre now Available in South Africa

MiaoMiao2 is an independent bluetooth reader designed to work with your FreeStyle Libre sensor. It transmits continuous glucose reporting every 5 minutes to your smartphone. MiaoMiao2 is rechargable and waterproof. You can track your blood sugars levels in real time and set low or high alarms without scanning your Libre sensor. With MiaoMiao2+Libre, you now get a continuous glucose monitor (CGM) which can also interface with closed loop artificial pancreas insulin systems.

Watch the video for more info or visit

The science behind the Amajoya Sugar Free Collection

Ever wondered how sugar free sweets are made? Read more on the science behind the Amajoya Sugar Free Collection.

The history of Amajoya

To be a surgeon, one needs to possess certain qualities, including a complex understanding of science, extreme precision, natural talent and a whole lot of passion. These same qualities are just as essential for a master confectioner. Fancy that!

It was just over twenty years ago that a Cape Town-based surgeon decided to follow his heart (or was it was his sweet-tooth?) and train as a sweet-maker at one of Germany’s most prestigious confectionery schools. Here, his doctor’s understanding of science and chemistry gave him a distinct edge.

On his return to the Mother City, he could craft and hone his recipes, using the finest ingredients to create distinctly different and delightful candy. And so, the Amajoya artisanal confectionary company was born.

Extraordinary and unique

The Amajoya commitment is to use fewer ingredients, ingredients closer to nature and fewer processed ingredients. We continually reformulate using less processed ingredients where possible on our quest for cleaner, simpler labels with less ingredients.

Our philosophy is that of balance and awareness of how you treat yourself in relation to your total daily food intake and activity.

Amajoya focuses on a unique way of combining and making the delicious collection of sweets. Our process is proprietary. Our founder, a medical doctor who left his career in neurosurgery, and followed his passion for sweet manufacturing, has a talent for technology and truly applies art and science to the process and recipes of the Amajoya Collection. Nothing in our way of making our sweets or our recipes is ordinary. The Amajoya Way is always extraordinary and unique.

We blend quality ingredients to create a taste that is unique in the world of luxurious sumptuous candy. When you pick Amajoya, you can be sure you’re getting a real product made with the best ingredients, care, integrity and a whole lot of love.

Authenticity is important for Amajoya. So, cleaner labelling (GMO free, no hydrogenated fats, real ingredients) and striving to keep our indulgent sweet collection packed with better stuff, is important to us. By the end of the year, all our sweets will only contain natural colourants.

The Amajoya Collection

Amajoya is the leading retail hard candy brand in South Africa. In 2013, we launched our first range of solid sugar free sweets, a classic Butterscotch, Buttermint and a three Fruit flavoured packet.

In 2018, we launched a luxury range of filled sugar free sweets with cocoa crème filling: Butterscotch, Buttermint, Coffee and Vanilla Raspberry.

Understanding the science of sugar free

Now a quick lesson on the science that goes into the sugar free world of products. It is important to understand a few scientific facts.

What is the definition of sugar free confectionery?

In nearly all countries in the world, it means that the total sugar content must be less than 0,5 g per 100 g.

What is a sugar?

A sugar is either a monosaccharide, such as glucose (dextrose) or fructose, or a disaccharide, such as sucrose (normal granulated sugar), maltose or lactose (milk sugar).

A saccharide is the most basic unit of sugar/carbohydrates. It is either a 5-membered ring, such as fructose, or a 6-membered ring, such as glucose.

A disaccharide, for example sucrose, consists of one fructose unit and one glucose unit. These can be split by a process, called hydrolysis, which requires one molecule of water, heat and acidity, or it can be broken down by the enzymes in your small bowel. This is why your blood glucose rises so quickly.

Making sugar free sweets

Sugar free sweets have a very low glycaemic index. Food items, such as bread (75) and sugar (65) have high glycaemic values. Isomalt (the ingredient we use in Amajoua) has a very low glycaemic index of about 5.

To make sugar free sweets, the sugar and glucose syrup must be replaced by something. These are called bulk sweeteners (polyols), such as isomalt, maltitol, erythritol or sorbitol.

Our preferential sweetener is isomalt. We buy our isomalt from Germany. It is made from granulated sugar in a two-step process.


Polyols are generally less sweet than sugar, so normally non-nutritive (intense) sweeteners are added. These substances do not provide any nutrition. The common artificial sweeteners are sucralose, aspartame, acesulfame K or saccharin .

Sucralose is made from sugar. These substances are generally 400-600 times as sweet as sugar and are used in parts per million. Stevia is an example of a natural non-nutritive sweetener.

Polyols are not well-absorbed in the small bowel and pass to the large bowel (colon). Here they are fermented, giving rise to short-chain fatty acids. The colonic cells first choice of nutrients are these fatty acids. There is also evidence that a healthier type of bacterial growth is encouraged in your colon.

Why are polyols known to cause laxative issues?

When too much polyol passes into the colon, one get excess fermentation which produces gas and osmotic pressure which can cause diarrhoea.

In practice, consumers all over the world get used to this and usually know the number of sweets they can consume per day.

We recommend you start with two per day and gradually increase until your limit is achieved. Within two weeks of regular intake, many people can consume more. Usually the number of sweets ranges from three to 10 sweets spread out over the day.

The laxative tolerance also depends on your diet. Isomalt belongs to a group of carbohydrates called Low Digestible Carbohydrates, such as fibre, beans, onions, grains, etc. Our Western diet is lacking in these. Your individual tolerance will also depend on the mix of foods that you are eating.

Why are sugar free sweets more expensive? 

Isomalt is about four times as expensive as granulated sugar.

Type 2 diabetes is caused by a progressive loss of beta cell function in your pancreas, frequently on the background of insulin resistance. Usually there are both genetic (predisposition) and lifestyle factors, such as being overweight or having the metabolic syndrome.

Eating sugar free sweets will give you pleasure. But, will also reduce your insulin demand and prevent continuous blood glucose elevation from frequent snacking. Sugar free sweets are also lower in energy (calories).

Remember that sugar free sweets are no good in an emergency if you experience hypoglycaemia (low blood glucose).

Amajoya Sugar Free Collection

Our new sugar free filled sweets contain isomalt in the casing and maltitol in the cocoa crème filling. Our cocoa is natural, non-alkalised, meaning it is much higher in polyphenols. The vegetable fat in the cocoa crème is non-hydrogenated and comes from sustainable sources. The casing has dairy components i.e. low lactose milk powder and butter.

All the filled sweets contain only natural colourants and natural flavours. We are in the process of changing all our sweets to natural colourants which will be complete by year end.

Production takes place locally in Atlantis, Cape Town, with one of the most high-tech sugar free plants in the world. We are obsessed with quality and this is evident in our processes. We are British Retail Consortium (BRC) accredited which means we have global food safety certification.

All our raw materials pass through 0,2mm or 0,4mm inline wedge wire filters. We also pass all the sugar free sweets through two highly-sensitive metal detectors.

Our collection is available at leading retailers around the country including Checkers, Pick and Pay, Spar, Clicks, Dischem and the Alpha Pharmacy Group.


Because everyone deserves a little indulgence.

Avocado: packed with goodness

The #AvoExperts (Westfalia Fruit) tell us why avocado is good for you in so many ways.

Avocado is good for you

Many years ago, we were told to enjoy only small portions of avo in salad or on toast and to avoid eating it every day. Luckily, thanks to research, we know the nutritious fats in avo are great for a healthy lifestyle. Although, too much toast may still not be a good idea.

Benefit from nutritious choices

Healthy food choices can make a huge difference in weight management, reducing the risk of heart disease and stabilising blood glucose levels. The high levels of monounsaturated fats in fresh avo, avocado oil and guacamole are important for a healthy and balanced way of eating. This is something people with diabetes should consider daily to help control their blood glucose levels.

Avo in so many ways

Westfalia Fruit, also known as the #AvoExperts make it easy to include avocado in many delicious ways. Their range of avocado oils and guacamoles offers something for everyone.

Research shows that the healthy fats in avo make you feel fuller faster, limiting the temptation to overeat or constantly nibble on unhealthy foods.

Avocado is such a healthy and versatile ingredient that goes with, well, almost anything. Add it to any meal of the day or enjoy a small portion as part of a snack with fresh veggies, like cucumber and green beans, instead of reaching for the cookie jar.

Perfectly pressed

Did you know that avocado oil is naturally cholesterol-free, and you can replace any cooking oil with avocado oil? Yes, you can easily add these healthy fats to your meals, whether you drizzle, cook, roast, fry, bake and even braai. Owing to a high smoke point of 250°C, the health structure of the oil remains intact, even when heated.

Westfalia Avocado Oil is pressed from ripe, hand-selected Hass avos. It’s 100% pure avocado oil and the best pressing techniques are used to preserve the flavour, richness and natural avocado goodness.

There are four options in Westfalia’s range of avocado oil: Plain, Lemon, Garlic, and Butter. The plain oil’s neutral flavour makes it a great all-rounder, as it does not taste like avocado, as many assume.

The range of oils is suitable for vegans and vegetarians, certified Halaal and Kosher, and has approval from the Heart and Stroke Foundation of South Africa.

Find this proudly local product in leading supermarkets, available in 250ml bottles, and look out for the plain avocado oil also available in a 500ml bottle.

Cook up a storm with a dollop, slice and glug

Fresh avo or dollops of Westfalia Guacamole can make a meal more filling, without the need for another carbohydrate, like a slice of bread.

Have you tried a fried egg on slices of fresh avo, with tomato and rocket? Fry the egg in Westfalia Lemon Flavoured Avocado Oil for a lemony twist. Or top your favourite bowl of soup with cubes of avo or dollops of guacamole instead of bread or cream. Not only is this a healthier choice but it also adds extra flavour and creaminess to the soup.

Real avocado

Guacamole is so convenient and available all-year round. The Westfalia range of creamy guacamole is produced from the flesh of ripe Hass avocados and perfect to use in several tasty ways.

Each 200g tub contains about two whole avocados which are hand-scooped, resulting in a delicious guacamole with chunks of real avocado.

There are four flavours in the range to choose from: Plain, Spicy, Sweet Chilli Salsa and Biltong Flavoured. Dip meat balls, grilled chicken or steamed veggies into this real avocado goodness.

Be an #avoexpert too and enjoy the benefits of avocado as part of a healthy way of eating. Always remember to eat it in controlled portions to manage the amount of energy you have in one meal or snack.

Follow Westfalia for more #AVOEXPERTS

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What is the cause of dry body skin?

We find out the causes, symptoms and solutions for dry body skin.

The skin is not only the body’s largest organ but plays a vital role in regulating body temperature and acts as a barrier protecting the body against infection.

However, dry body skin that is cracked can lose its ability to perform these functions. A good skin care routine using products formulated specifically for rough and cracked skin, like Eucerin UreaRepair PLUS, can help to restore skin to a healthier state.


  • Extreme tightness
  • Extreme roughness
  • Skin cracks or fissures
  • Intense itching


The causes of rough and cracked dry skin vary from poor skin care and environmental factors to health-related conditions, such as atopic dermatitis (eczema) and diabetes. These skin care and environmental factors include:

  1. Skin care

The use of harsh soaps on the skin strips the skin of its natural lipids and moisture leading to rough and cracked dry skin. A gentle wash fluid that does not wash away skin’s natural protective barrier should be used.

A suitable moisturiser should be frequently applied to the affected area. The best time to moisturise is when the skin is clean and slightly damp. For example, after a bath or shower. Moisturisers that contain compounds that restore the functioning of the deeper skin layers are recommended for very dry, rough and cracked skin.

Frequent washing is also a contributing factor to rough and cracked dry skin. Baths and showers should not be too hot or too long. This causes the skin’s natural lipids and natural moisturising factors to be leached from the skin, reducing its ability to retain moisture.

  1. Weather, seasons and sun exposure

The change of season is a common cause for rough and cracked dry skin. During the harsh winter months, the skin is exposed to the cold weather, and the use of heating indoors dries out the skin. Skin becomes rough and cracked during this time, and if left untreated these cracks can get deeper and become inflamed.

During the hot summer months, skin becomes dry due to too much sun exposure. To prevent the skin from becoming rough and cracked, a sunscreen containing a moisturiser should be applied.

  1. Occupational risks

Certain occupations are at a greater risk of developing dry body skin which can become very rough and cracked. These are jobs that involve exposing the skin to certain conditions, such as very hot or cold conditions (farmers), frequent use of detergents (doctors/nurses/hairdressers).

  1. Dehydration

The skin receives its water via the body, and is therefore dependent on the body’s water balance. When dehydrated, the body reduces the supply of moisture to the skin which slows down the natural flow of water through the skin, which can contribute to dry skin.

  1. Smoking

Cigarettes contain toxins which cause a significant decrease in blood flow. This results in a decreased metabolic rate within the skin, which causes the supportive fibres in connective tissue to lose their elasticity. This means the skin has aged prematurely, and is easily dried out. 

Caring for rough and dry body skin

Dry skin is caused by a breakdown in the skin’s barrier function which leads to the loss of moisture and water-binding capacity due to a deficiency of moisturising factors. Therefore, dry skin needs a skin care routine that does not cause further deterioration of the skin barrier and replaces missing natural moisturising factors.

Eucerin UreaRepair PLUS is an effective range of products that delivers both immediate and long-lasting relief for dry, very dry and rough skin. All Eucerin UreaRepair PLUS products are formulated with a unique combination of ingredients:

  • Urea and other Natural Moisturising Factors (NMFs) to improve skin’s water-binding capacity and increase its moisture content.
  • Ceramide and other lipids to form a lipid envelope to strengthen the skin barrier and protect against moisture loss.

Cleansing dry body skin

Dry skin is most likely dry due to the skin’s surface barrier breaking down. Therefore, it is important that the cleanser is gentle enough not to wash away the skin’s natural protective barrier. Additional natural moisturising factors, such as urea, will also help to restore the skin’s moisture balance. Eucerin UreaRepair PLUS 5% Urea Replenishing Body Wash Fluid is an effective, replenishing cleanser for dry skin that can be used daily.

Moisturising dry body skin

The first requirement for moisturisers for dry skin is to restore the moisture balance in the upper layers of the skin. Natural moisturising factors (NMF) compounds, like urea and lactate, bind moisture into the stratum corneum, or upper layer of the skin.

The minimum recommended concentration of urea, even for mild dry skin, should be 5%. Very dry skin generally requires a higher concentration of urea and other moisturising factors.

The Eucerin Urea range for dry skin contains a range of products which includes lotions, creams and a cleanser as well as hand care treatments. These products are available with different concentrations of the water-binding active urea, and the concentration used should vary according to the severity of dryness.

For more information please visit

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Share mySugr reports with your healthcare professional

Roche Diabetes Care is pleased to offer you free access to the mySugr Pro app during the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

Roche Diabetes Care is offering their support to you and the healthcare system during this time by providing six months of free access for adults with diabetes to our diabetes management app, mySugr Pro*.

Free access to this app (usually R539,99 per year) will help your experience of digital/telephone appointments by digitally providing blood glucose monitoring information to your healthcare professional.

You can download the mySugr app to your smartphone and unlock the Pro version using the activation code. The code will give Qualifying Users access to the Pro version of the mySugr app for six months from the date of redemption of the code. The code may be redeemed until 30 September 2020.

Once you have mySugr Pro installed, you can download a report and send it to your healthcare professional via email.

This app allows you to enter blood glucose results from any device and is already used by more than two million registered users worldwide1.

For more information on this offer, please visit:

*T&C’s apply

To check if you have a compatible smart phone please contact the Roche Diabetes Care Customer Centre on +27 (11) 504 4677.


1:  Play store and Apple store November 2019


Visit the Accu-Chek website at

Roche Diabetes Care South Africa (Pty) Ltd. Hertford Office Park, Building E, No 90 Bekker Road, Midrand, 1686, South Africa. Email:; Call Toll Free: 080-34-22-38-37 (SA only); +27 (11) 504 4677 (Other countries)

ACCU-CHEK is a trademark of Roche. mySugr is the trademark of GmbH.

©2020 Roche Diabetes Care.


Shape Diet Meal Replacement Shakes

Registered diabetes educator and dietitian, Tammy Jardine, tells us all we need to know about Shape Diet Meal Replacement Shakes.

Shape Diet Meal Replacement Shakes should be used as a meal replacement and not as a supplement (addition to a meal).

When meal planning in diabetes, the priority is the total carbohydrate content since this is the macro-nutrient that most affects blood glucose.

As a basic rule of thumb principle, it’s recommended to limit total carbohydrate in a meal to no more than 45g, and to no more than 10g in a snack for optimal blood glucose control.

Water vs milk

Shape shakes provide 21,8-24g per serving when made up with water. This means that a small fruit or a green salad could be eaten with the shake if you still feel hungry, without compromising the carbohydrate limits.

If it’s made with milk then the carbohydrate will increase to 32,8-35g per serving which will still fall within the carbohydrate limits.

Monitor your blood glucose

When substituting the shake for a meal, it’s good practice to monitor blood glucose to see what affect the shake has on your blood glucose.

Since the shake is relatively low in carbohydrates, it’s a good idea to have a healthy snack, like a small fruit, available in case your blood glucose level drops.

If you find that the shakes do decrease blood glucose then instead of having food to increase them, which would contradict your weight loss efforts, try mixing the shake with skim milk. Alternatively, speak to your healthcare provider about adjusting your diabetes medications.

Fibre content

The fibre content is a little low when considering that the requirements for fibre is 25g a day. One shake provides between 0,2g and 1,3g per serving. Therefore, it is not recommended that the shake provide the sole source of nutrition for a day. Include some fresh veg to boost your fibre intake.

Protein, fat and energy

Shape Diet Meal Replacement Shakes are high in protein which helps you feel satiated. It’s low in fat and not high in energy, at less than 845kJ per serving, which is why it will be beneficial for weight loss.

Any meal replacement shake should have added vitamins and mineral so that micro-nutrient requirements are met. No additional multivitamin supplements are necessary when replacing meals with fortified shakes.

Non-nutritive sweeteners

The non-nutritive sweeteners, sucralose (in the shakes), and sugar alcohols (xylitol) are safe to use for people living with diabetes. They don’t cause a rise in blood glucose levels.

There will always be controversy about sugar substitutes since they require processing to achieve final product. The debate is not whether it’s natural (since sucrose sugar is natural), but rather about the process and the chemicals required to process the product. In studies, there is no scientific reason to avoid sugar substitutes in diabetes.

Frequently asked questions

Can I replace all three meals and just have some fruit or salad to add fibre?

The shake can be used to replace one to all three meals a day. The reason for using a shake will determine how many meals are replaced and the length of time it will be used.

Some people may want to use the shake as a meal replacement to replace a meal that they don’t have time to prepare, like breakfast and/or lunch. Some will use it as an alternative to a meal for weight loss. The benefit being that it’s calorie controlled and fortified with added vitamins and minerals.

If three meals are replaced, it’s advised to add vegetables to the daily intake to ensure a better fibre intake. Replacing all meals would be considered a low-calorie diet. There is some evidence that a low-calorie diet for six-12 weeks can decrease weight and improve insulin resistance. These improvements have been shown to have a positive effect on diabetes since blood glucose levels improve. If this weight loss is maintained, it’s possible that the improvements in blood glucose can be more long-term and can even possibly ‘reverse’ diabetes. You should speak to a diabetes dietitian if this interests you. A low-calorie diet should be undertaken under the guidance of a dietitian.

Do I only use Shape until I have lost the required weight?

If the aim of using a meal replacement is for weight loss, then you can use the shake for the time that it takes to lose the weight. Then use the shake less frequently to transition to a normal diet and prevent weight regain.

Could you substitute two meals and still have one cooked meal a day? Or would that upset the plan?

There are various ways to use the shake. This is probably the most common way (as mentioned in the question) of using the shake. The cooked meal should still be well-balanced, high in vegetables with a portion of lean meat, high-fibre starch and a small amount of fat.

If I don’t need to lose weight, can I still use the shake for an easy convenient midday meal?

Yes, you can use the shake to replace a meal if you don’t have time to prepare a meal.


Tammy Jardine is a qualified diabetes educator and a registered dietitian. Living with diabetes for over 15 years means that she knows first-hand how difficult it can be to achieve and maintain optimal blood glucose control with good lifestyle habits. She believes that diabetes affects every person differently and takes the time to understand how it’s affecting the individual and to help them manage it effectively. With more than 20 years of experience working as a dietitian in the UK and SA, she has a passion for helping people live a better and happier life with good food. Tammy currently works from Wilgeheuwel hospital. Email:

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