health care professionals talk about aspartame

Foods and drinks sweetened with aspartame taste excellent, yet have only a fraction of the calories that they would contain if they were sweetened with sugar.  They therefore make a useful contribution to the maintenance of a healthy body weight. This site provides information and resources for dietitians, nutritionists, health care professionals and others interested in learning more about aspartame.

Evidence shows that low calorie sweeteners help reduce calorie intake and body weight

peter rogers November 10, 2015: In a study published in the International Journal of Obesity, researchers have, for the first time, integrated all the available science into a single review to evaluate the real impact of low calorie sweeteners on calorie intake and body weight. A considerable weight of evidence confirms that choosing foods and drinks with low calorie sweeteners instead of those with sugar helps reduce energy intake and body weight. More

6 Ways to Cut Your Sugar Intake without Noticing

Theresa Hedrick : October 24, 2016

Most of us are eating more than double the amount of sugar that we should be, according to the American Heart Association. That's a problem because eating a lot of sugar has been linked to health problems and shortfalls of essential nutrients. (Note: the concern is with added sugar, not naturally occurring sugar like that found in fruit or milk.) Sugar makes things taste good, but reducing the amount you eat doesn't have to mean misery. There are several ways to cut your sugar intake without even noticing.

Read food labels. The "Total Carbohydrate" line on a food's Nutrition Facts Panel can give you an idea of how many carbs are in a serving of that food. Unfortunately, it's tough to tell what kind it is or how much is naturally-occurring versus added sugar. By mid-2018, food labels will be updated with an "Added Sugars" line that breaks out that information. In the meantime, if you see "sugar", "high-fructose corn syrup", "brown rice syrup", "sucrose", "cane sugar", "honey", or "molasses" listed at the beginning of the ingredient list, the product probably has more sugar than you need. In that case, you may want to find a similar product that lists sugar further down the ingredient list.

Buy unsweetened. Products like apple sauce and fruit cups are sweet enough of their own. Buy the unsweetened versions of the products and you'll never miss the added sugar. Unsweetened products will often say "unsweetened" or "no added sugar" on the front of the package, but you can tell for sure by checking the list of ingredients for any added sugar.

Opt for low sugar versions of products. Using sugar-free flavoring in your coffee drink can save you 19g of sugar as compared to the regular flavoring. Do that for your caramel nut mocha, a drink that contains three different flavor shots, and you'll save a whopping 57g of sugar (228 Calories!) without noticing. Likewise, drinking a can of diet soda instead of a regular one will save you about 39g of sugar (156 Calories).

Put sweet things in small containers. We judge how much we should eat based on how full our bowl/plate looks. So, we'll serve ourselves - and therefore eat - more ice cream if we're scooping it into a cereal bowl versus a juice glass. In fact, one study showed that people served themselves 31% more ice cream when using a large bowl and 14.5% more when using a large scoop as opposed to when they used a medium sized bowl or a smaller scoop. Think your stomach will notice the difference? It won't. Studies have shown you'll rate yourself as feeling just as full even though you ate less.

Slightly under measure sugar. The next time you put sugar in your coffee or tea, use slightly less than you normally do, and chances are you won't be able to notice. If you're baking cookies, measure the sugar to just below the line on the measuring cup rather than right at it. The difference won't be enough to throw off the recipe or the taste, but a little sugar savings here and there will add up. 

Use naturally sweet foods instead of sugar. Skip the jelly on your peanut butter and jelly sandwich, and have a peanut butter and banana sandwich instead. Snack bars can be made with pureed dates or figs instead of sugar. True, you'll still be getting some sugar from the fruit, but it'll be less overall and will come with more vitamins and minerals than sugar alone would.

What's your favorite way to cut sugar without noticing?

Theresa Hedrick is a Registered Dietitian Nutritionist in Oregon and regularly provides counsel to the Aspartame Resource Center.

Download the Aspartame Booklet

Download the Aspartame Booklet
Download the Aspartame Booklet (PDF 1.6MB) or click here to order hard copies

The Calorie Savings Counter

The Calorie Savings Counter
Replacing high-calorie foods in your diet with low-calorie alternatives is a proven method to lose extra pounds and maintain a healthy weight.

Watch the Aspartame Video

Watch the Aspartame Video
Learn how the body breaks down aspartame into the same components that are found in everyday foods and drinks.

More about aspartame

Academy of Nutrition & Dietetics: Evidence Analysis on Aspartame
To access this resource click here and enter 'aspartame' into the search box.
American Heart Association Recommends Reduction in Sugar Intake
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Does Diet Soda Actually Make You Gain Weight?
View article [PDF 0.1MB]
Are sweeteners getting a bad rap..?
View article [PDF 0.1MB]

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