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Information on Artificial Sugar

Artificial sweeteners, also know as sugar substitutes, are calorie-free or very low-calorie substances that are used in the place of table sugar to sweeten foods and beverages. Artificial sweeteners must be approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) before they are made available to the United States consumers. Currently, there are five types of artificial sweeteners that are available for purchase and approved by the FDA.

 

Aspartame and Acesulfame-K

Aspartame and Acesulfame-K are artificial sweeteners that are both approximately 200 times sweeter than sucrose, also known as table sugar. Both sweeteners are classified as general purpose sweeteners, however, Acesulfame-K is not allowed in meat and poultry. Acesulfame-K is more suitable than Aspartame in baking, as it is stable when exposed to prolonged periods of heat.

 

Saccharin
Saccharin is approximately 200-700 times sweeter than sucrose and is approved as a tabletop sweetener as well as a sweetener for beverages. Saccharin has been scrutinized in the media as a possible cancer causing agent, however, in 2000 saccharin was removed from the list of substances anticipated to be human carcinogens. The warning label which was once on all products containing saccharin was also repealed in 2000.

 

Sucralose and Neotame
Sucralose is 600 times sweeter than sucrose, whereas Neotame is the sweetest of artificial sweeteners at approximately 8000 times the sweetness. Sucralose is both a tabletop and general purpose sweetener. Neotame is also a general purpose sweetener with the except of meat and poultry.

 

Artificial sweeteners may contribute in weight control and prevention of dental cavities due to being a non-nutritive substance. These sweeteners may also contribute to better blood sugar control, as saccharin, acesulfame potassium, neotame and sucralose produce no glycemic response -- meaning no spike in blood sugar.

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