What are artificial or non-nutritive sweeteners?
Artificial or non-nutritive sweeteners are sweeteners that do not provide any carbohydrate or calories per serving. There are four main non-nutritive sweeteners:
- Saccharin - Sold as Sweet n Low®, Sweet Twin, or Necta Sweet (pink packet) or as Sugar Twin® (a brown sugar substitute), this sweetener is very stable for baking, but it does have a noticeable aftertaste when used in large quantities.
- Aspartame – Sold as NutraSweet (blue packet) and Equal, has little aftertaste but becomes unstable at high temperatures so it is not appropriate for baking or cooking.
- Acesulfame potassium - Sold as Sweet One®, Sunett, or Swiss Sweet®, it has less of an aftertaste than saccharin and it is more stable when heated than aspartame. This sweetener, however, it is not available in all markets.
- Sucralose - With the trade name of Splenda® (yellow packet), it is an artificial sweetener that is made from sugar with certain chemical changes. It has the same volume and taste as sugar and it is stable to heat. Using large amounts of Splenda® will add calories. For this reason, products made with Splenda® will have fewer calories than if made with sugar, but will still have some added sweetener calories.
- Stevia - Truvia™, Sweetleaf, and PureVia™ are brand name table-top zero calorie sweeteners that are also used as an ingredient in some beverages. Truvia™ can be found in some Coca-Cola products and PureVia™ can be found in some PepsiCo. products. The sweetening ingredient, rebiana is found in the leaves of the stevia plant. There are many forms of rebiana compounds. Although the FDA approved its use in December 2008, not all stevia-derived products have been approved.
Note: Sugar Twin sold in Canada contains cyclamate, which is banned in the United States.
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This document is a source of information only, and is not medical advice.