Low-calorie sweeteners are also known as artificial sweeteners, sugar substitutes or non-nutritive sweeteners. Most common artificial sweeteners in "sugar free" or "reduced sugar" products are acesulfame potassium (also called acesulfame K), aspartame , saccharin, sucralose , neotame and advantame.
For example, Euqal is an artificial sweetener with different ingredients.
Find out more: http://www.equal.com/equal-next/ingredients#next
All of the sweeteners listed above cannot be broken down by the body, except aspartame. They pass through our systems without being digested so they provide no extra calories.
Replacing normal cane "sugar" with low-calorie sweeteners is commonly used by people who need to control their blood sugar level (ie diabetes), but has a "sweet-tooth". Some people use it to reduce calorie intake for weight loss purpose.
But in fact, many foods containing low-calorie sweeteners may still provide the some calories and carbohydrate from other ingredients. That means foods that carry claims like "sugar-free," "reduced sugar" or "no sugar added" are not necessarily carbohdyrate-free or lower in carbohydrate than the original version of the food. Always check the nutrition panel, even for foods that carry these claims. Book an appointment with me or your Accredited Practicing Dietitian to keep away from Marketing Traps.
Ok...To answer the question. Is low-calorie sweetener OK?
Artifical sweetener used in low sugar drinks helps to reduce calorie and sugar content in diet soft drinks or sugary drinks. People think low-calorie sweetener they are OK to drink. But infact, it is not OK.
There are immerging researches showing artificial sweetener and sugar alternative can disturb our gut health, metabolism, mood, and organ functions. Increase appetite for sweet foods, promote overeating, and may even lead to weight gain.
Studies based on MRI scans suggested that unlike glucose and maltodextrin, aspartame did not trigger sugar-like response in the brain (Hypothlamus- for emotion, thirst, hunger) and the pancreas. This means your sugar craving is not satisified !!!! And may cause you to eat more.....
For those of you who are interested to know more about aspartame, this is a very powerful video to show what aspartame does to our body.
Over all, training your taste bud to a lower sugar threshold will be the best way to reduce sugar cravings. If you are struggling, contact me or your dietitian for assistance.