UNESDA statement on benefits of low calorie sweeteners in aiding weight loss

8 December 2014

The consensus among experts is that low calorie sweeteners work. In addition to other benefits, low-calorie sweeteners can enhance weight loss under real-life conditions when used as a part of a behavioural weight loss programme, and do not increase appetite.

The consensus statement by world-class, multidisciplinary independent experts, Sigrid Gibson, Prof Adam Drewnowski, Prof James Hill, Prof Eeva Widström, Prof Hely Tuorila and Prof Anne Raben has been peer reviewed and published in Nutrition Bulletin. It can be viewed here.

Notes to Editors

Experts agree that low calorie sweeteners can have a beneficial effect on post-prandial glucose and insulin in healthy individuals and in people with diabetes, with a positive impact on dental health when used in food, beverages, toothpaste and medications, provided other constituents are also non-cariogenic and non-erosive.

By drawing attention to the wealth of recent evidence-based research about the benefits of low calorie sweeteners, the consensus paper addresses misperceptions and misinformation about the effects of low calorie sweeteners. Moreover, it reminds health care professionals and the general public of the endorsement low calorie sweeteners have received from regulatory authorities around the world.

Weight management is one of the primary reasons people use low calorie sweeteners, and I think now we have just a tremendous number of studies that show that low calorie sweeteners are positive, not negative, tools for weight management”, points out Prof James Hill, concluding “that is a message that needs to be more widely understood”.

By providing sweetness without the calories, low calorie sweetened options can make a useful contribution to a healthy, calorie-controlled diet. They are also kind to teeth.

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