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Low Calorie Sweeteners

by Fitness and Freebies

Low-calorie sweeteners provide sweet taste without calories, or with very few calories. Most low-calorie sweeteners are not digested by the body and provide no calories. An exception is aspartame, which is metabolized naturally. But since aspartame is approximately 200 times sweeter than sucrose, only a tiny amount of aspartame (1/10 of a calorie) is needed to equal the sweetness of a teaspoon of sugar (16 calories).

Low-calorie sweeteners are also called "non-nutritive sweeteners," "intense sweeteners," "high intensity sweeteners," "high potency sweeteners," or "alternative sweeteners".

The first low-calorie sweetener, saccharin, was discovered in 1878. And since then, a number of other low-calorie sweeteners including cyclamate, aspartame, acesulfame K, neohesperidine DC, thaumatin, sucralose and alitame have been produced and used around the world.

The consumption of low-calorie sweeteners continues to increase. Consumer demand for low-calorie foods and beverages has been the major force behind this growth. In the USA, for example, a national consumer survey shows that the consumption of low-calorie foods and beverages by people aged 18 and older has doubled in the past decade. This increasing interest in a health-conscious lifestyle and advances in food technology are pushing the development of more and better tasting low-calorie foods and beverages. Low-calorie sweeteners are also used in other consumer products such as pharmaceuticals, chewing gums, dentifrices, mouthwashes and fluoride supplements.

Fitness and Freebies
Source: Fitness and Freebies
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