On various discussion forums and blogs, I have seen discussions about Dreamsfield pasta. Recently one of my readers asked me to try it. I looked up the label for their spaghetti and replied that it was too high in carbs (37 net carbs). He said that only 5 g. was digestible. The label reads per serving:
"Total Carbohydrates 42 g.
Dietary Fiber 5 g.
...Soluble Fiber 4 g.
...Insoluble Fiber 1 g."
Now, anyone used to counting net carbs can quickly determine that 42 minus 5 is 37 net carbs per serving, right? So, then how come the front of the package claims 5 g. per serving? If you read the ingredients, you'll find that this product contains sorbitol, a sugar alcohol. I advocate following the American Diabetic Association's recommendation of calculating net carbs by counting 1/2 of the sugar alcohols as this is how much is digested on average. But, given that the label does not tell us how many of the carbohydrates come from the sorbitol, it is difficult to tell what the true effective carbohydrate count is!
It is likely that the sugar alcohol count per serving may be 32 (that is 42 total carbs - 5 fiber - 5 "net carbs"). If this is the case, I would calculate the effective carbohydrate count of one serving to be 21 (that is 42 total carbs - 5 fiber - 1/2 of 32 sugar alcohols). There is a huge difference between 21 net carbs and the 5 net carbs claimed on the package.
I personally feel that any product that boasts a low net carb count by excluding ALL of the carbs from sugar alcohols are intentionally being deceptive or else demonstrate the ignorance of the manufacturer. I abhore this practice as their claims could seriously hurt or kill some diabetics.
Now, the dreamsfield website does claim a glycemic index of 13, which is lower than normal pasta. So, it's not necessarily a bad product. I am unsure of how this relates to the true net carbohydrate count. But, it does mean that they are trying to be at least somewhat sensitive to people who need to keep an eye on their insulin. But, I still don't buy the claim of only 5 net carbs. What I am saying applies not only to their pasta but also just about every low carb product on the market that contains sugar alcohols.
A good fact sheet about sugar alcohols can be found on the following web site: http://www.ific.org/publications/factsheets/sugaralcoholfs.cfm. On it, they say:
An American Dietetic Association publication recommends that persons with diabetes managing their blood sugars using the carbohydrate counting method 'count half of the grams of sugar alcohol as carbohydrates since half of the sugar alcohol on average is digested.'
There is also a good article on http://www.lowcarb.ca/tips/tips010.html about sugar alcohols and their affects on low-carb dieters.
In August, 2005, Dr. Eades (co-author of Protein Power) posted a blog entry regarding sugar alcohols (http://www.proteinpower.com/drmd_blog/?p=8). In the blog entry, she stated:
"Our sort of ballpark standard means of calculating their effective contribution to a low carb diet, crude at best, is to count as usable about one-third to one-half of the sugar alcohol grams in a recipe or food. For instance, say the nutritional label of a protein bar proclaims 20 total grams of carbohydrate, 5 of which are fiber, 3 of which are starch and 12 of which are sugar alcohols. The label will likely state--usually in a big red or yellow starburst--contains only 3 grams net carb! Really? Depending on which sugar alcohol(s) contributed those 12 grams, some portion of them will be absorbed to contribute calories at the very least and raise blood sugar in sensitive individuals at the very worst. And, of course, what's not absorbed contributes to the gastrointestinal symptoms that occur with some of them. It would be more correct (not to mention more prudent for people struggling to lose weight and for the diabetic population) to count at least 4 and possibly 6 of those sugar alcohol grams as having an effect, for a total of 7 or 9 net grams. Just doing that little bit of math may help keep your weight loss going or your blood sugar in better control. "
There is another problem with Dreamsfield Pasta having sorbitol. This is that sorbitol has some rather nasty side effects. I haven't seen an actual Dreamsfield Pasta box up close. Can anyone tell me if it warns of diarreah or other side effects caused by the ingredient sorbitol?
Wikipedia has this to say about Sorbital:
Sorbitol can be used as a non-stimulant laxative by either in oral suspension or suppository form. The drug works by drawing water into the large intestine, thereby stimulating bowel movements. Sorbitol has been determined safe to use in the elderly. 
Ingesting large amounts of sorbitol can lead to some abdominal pain, gas, and mild to severe diarrhea. Sorbitol can also aggravate irritable bowel syndrome and fructose malabsorption.
So, now you know my opinion. And, this is why I have not tried the pasta. I typically avoid sugar alcohols. There are a few products with them that are in my diet. I calculate my own "net carbs" and ignore the claims on the front of the package. As a matter of principle, the few of these products that I do allow in my diet come in packages that do not hide behind questionable claims and that clearly state the laxative effects. They don't seem to have a laxative effect on me, personally. So, this more of a matter of principle in supporting only companies that are honest and upfront with their consumers.