Complete List of Artificial Sweeteners

I felt it important to provide you with a complete list of all the artificial sweeteners I could find. This list reveals safety, brand names, calories, GMO concerns, side effects, and a description of each artificial sweetener. I advise avoiding sugar in favor of using the artificial sweeteners I deem safe in this blog post or use the sweeteners I recommend in my article Safe Artificial Sweeteners.

I decided to give you a list of the sweeteners with pertinent information that I would want to know about each sweetener. Information is provided as follows:

  1. Number. The Artificial Sweeteners are listed by their International Numbering System (INS) food additive code, i.e. 961, used in the US. The E in front of the number is the corresponding European Union Numbers (i.e. E961).
  2. Safety. The artificial sugars are classified according to their safety. Some are safe, some you should cut back on, and some you should avoid at all costs. Each label means the following:
    • Safe – Safe to consume.
    • Avoid – Shown by studies to be dangerous to your health. There is no reason to consume them when you have safe alternatives.
  3. Also Known As. This list allows you to find all the names of a sweetener in an ingredient list on the product label.
  4. Brand Names. Some products have popular brand names; others are simply sold by their generic name.
  5. Calories. Compare calories per gram to sugar, which has 4 calories per gram. Food and Drug Administration regulations permit any food product that has 5 or fewer calories per serving to be labeled as containing “0” calories. Most artificial sweeteners are so sweet and so little is needed that a typical serving delivers no calories.
  6. Glycemic Index: The glycemic index reveals how quickly a food increases your blood sugar. This number is important for anyone trying to control their blood sugar, like diabetics. For comparison, table sugar has a glycemic index of 65.
  7. Found In. A link or list is provided for you to identify all the foods, pharmaceuticals and other products in which you’ll find a sweetener.
  8. GMO Concerns. Many artificial sweeteners are derived from or contain flow agents (ingredients to bulk up the product) made from GMO corn or other GMOs. If you’re trying to avoid GMO’s for obvious health reasons, I reveal the sweeteners from which to steer clear.
  9. Description. Each product’s side effects, safety concerns and other interesting information so you can decide if the product is right for you

Acesulfame Potassium (E950) – AVOID

Also Known as:

  • Acesulfame K
  • Ace K
  • ACE

Brand Names: Sunett, Sweet One, Sweet & Safe

Calories: 0 Calories per gram

Glycemic Index: 0

Found in: Complete list of foods containing Acesulfame Potassium

GMO Concerns: No. Acesulfame K is a completely synthesized chemical

Acesulfame K is a potassium salt containing methylene chloride, a known carcinogen. It is an agent that is also used as a propellant, de-greaser and paint stripper. Reported side effects of long-term exposure to methylene chloride can include nausea, headaches, mood problems, hypoglycemia, impairment of the liver and kidneys, problems with eyesight and possibly cancer.

Studies about the effects of acesulfame-K are mixed. A July, 2008 study in Preventive Medicine states that the use of artificial sweeteners over a 10 year period encouraged the development of urinary tract tumors, while a report from the 2005 National Toxicology Program states specifically that acesulfame-K showed no evidence of cancer activity in rats.

One reason to avoid this no calorie sweetener is because it can affect your thyroid, which can decrease your metabolism and contribute to weight gain. Your thyroid sets your metabolism and burns the calories you eat. If it doesn’t work, you gain weight. Large doses of acetoacetamide, a breakdown product of Acesulfame K, have been shown to affect the thyroid in rats, rabbits, and dogs. Hopefully, the small amounts added to foods do not harm your thyroid, but if it affects the thyroid in several different animals, it could possibly affect yours. Not worth it to save calories.

Of all artificial sweeteners, acesulfame-K has undergone the least scientific scrutiny. Early studies showed a potential link between the sweetener and development of multiple cancers in laboratory animals. The Center for Science in the Public Interest states that it can be potentially dangerous, and is an additive that should be avoided.

Advantame – AVOID

Brand Names: Not yet available

Calories: 0

Glycemic Index: 0

Found in: As this is a newly-approved artificial sweetener, a complete list of foods containing Advantame is not yet available.

GMO Concerns: Yes. Advantame is actually a derivative of Aspartame (also derived from GMO ingredients, meaning they do not exist in nature).  It is manufactured by Japanese company, Anjinomoto, Inc., the same company responsible for producing most of the world’s MSG .

Advantame was only approved by the U.S. FDA as a safe food additive as recently as May of 2014, making it the newest item on this list. It is also one of the sweetest. This high-intensity artificial sweetener is 20,000 times sweeter (measured gram per gram) than table sugar.

Advantame is water soluble and the advantage of this sweetener is that it does not break down at high temperatures, making it ideal for baking.  Its tolerance to heat also makes it suitable for the making of syrups, gelatins, jams, jellies, puddings, chewing gum, sweet confections such as frosting, frozen desserts, processed fruits and juices, as well as soft drinks.

The daily safe consumption level for Advantame, as set by the FDA, is 32.8 milligrams per kilograms of one’s bodyweight. That amounts to roughly to an intake level of 40,000 packets per day of advantage that is deemed the safe, compared to 165 packets per day of Aspartame or 250 packets per day of sSaccharine (again, measured by kilogram of bodyweight).

However, the Center for Science in the Public Interest (CSPI) points to an alarming concern regarding the FDA’s evaluation of Advantame on their website:

“…an initial concern is that in a key cancer study in mice, the number of mice that survived to the end of the study was below FDA’s own scientific recommendations, and is therefore inadequate to provide confidence in the safety of a chemical likely to be consumed by millions of people.”

Furthermore, individuals with the rare genetic disorder phenylketonuria (PKU) should avoid this sweetener at all cost, as Advantame – like Aspartame – contains phenylalanine and individuals with PKU have difficulty metabolizing this ingredient.

Though approved for the general population by the FDA, along with the European Union, this is a sweetener you should still try to avoid. That is, if you can.  Part of the FDA ruling did not include a clause stating that a warning label must be placed on items containing this new artificial sweetener, though such a label is required by those containing Aspartame. The FDA’s reasoning for not requiring such an alert being that since Advantame is a much higher intensity sweetener than Aspartame, the amount used to achieve the same effect would be so low in volume as to not approach toxic levels. Still, it is alarming that a product that contains a sweetener derived from Aspartame, does not require a alert to its presence on the packaging.

Alitame (E956) – AVOID

Brand Names: Aclame

Calories: 0 calories per gram

Glycemic Index: 0

Found in: Complete list of foods containing Alitame

GMO Concerns: No
Alitame is formed from the amino acids aspartatic acid and alanine. There is cause for concern because it is very chemically similar to aspartame, which has many known negative health implications. Therefore, I would avoid it. Developed by Pfizer, alitame is an artificial sweetener 2,000 times sweeter than sugar. It is so potent that only a tiny amount of the sweetener is needed per serving. The amounts really are miniscule and unlikely to cause any side effects. Due to very high production costs, manufacture has recently ceased. Not yet approved in the USA. Approved in the EU, Mexico, China and Australia. The FDA is delaying approval pending further safety studies.

Aspartame (E951) – AVOID

Also Known As:

  • Acesulfame Potassium
  • APM
  • Aspartyl phenylalanine methyl ester

Brand Names: NutraSweet, Equal, Spoonful, Equal-Measure, Canderel, Benevia, AminoSweet, NatraTaste

Calories: 4 calorie per gram

Glycemic Index: 0

Found in: Complete list of foods containing Aspartame

GMO Concerns: Yes. It is usually paired with Maltodextrin, which is made from GMO corn in the US. All the brand names of aspartame may contain GMOs.

Whenever your body tries to process an unrecognizable unnatural substance like aspartame, the stage is set for health problems. Aspartame is a synthetic chemical combination which is comprised of approximately 50% phenylalanine, 40% aspartic acid, and 10% methanol. Aspartame causes more adverse symptoms, health conditions, and disease than all food additives combined. I would absolutely avoid this deadly artificial sweetener.

There have been more reports to the FDA for aspartame reactions than for all other food additives combined with over 10,000 documented reports of adverse reactions, including death. Aspartame accounts for 75 percent of adverse reactions to food additives reported to the FDA. There are over 900 published studies on the health hazards of aspartame. See the list in the National Library Medicine Index. Since it is estimated only about one percent of people who experience a reaction report it, it is safe to assume at least a million people have had a reaction to this chemical.

Over a hundred side effects can accompany the use of aspartame. The June 2009 issue of the Clinical Journal of Pain lists aspartame as a food trigger for migraine headaches, noting that many people are sensitive to it. My husband drinks at least five diet Coke’s a day and he is constantly getting headaches, stomach aches and heart palpitations, but he just can’t believe they are being caused by his death soda. The Center for Science in the Public Interest (CSPI) reports that aspartame can cause neurological problems and that consumption of the artificial sweetener, over extended periods of time, increases cancer risks. A 2010 study found that artificially sweetened drinks probably caused premature deliveries; the researchers suspected that aspartame was the culprit, but the study needs to be confirmed by other scientists.

Commonly reported symptoms of an aspartame reaction include:

headache change in mood
change in vision convulsions and seizures
sleep problems/insomnia change in heart rate
hallucination abdominal cramps/pain
memory loss rash
nausea and vomiting fatigue and weakness
dizziness/poor equilibrium diarrhea
hives joint pain


The biggest concern with Aspartame is that it has been shown to increase cancers. After aspartame’s approval for use in diet soda in 1983, over a million pounds of aspartame were consumed. In 1984, brain cancer rates increased higher than for any other type of cancer. According to the National Cancer Institute, there was a 10 percent increase in malignant brain cancer in 1985 — just two years after aspartame flooded the market in diet drinks. Equally alarming is evidence that women of childbearing age who consumed aspartame during pregnancy were delivering babies with an increased risk of brain and spinal cord cancer.

Aspartame breaks down into aspartate, phenylalanine and methanol in the body. No amount of methanol is good for your body. Manufacturers maintain that the amount of methanol is so small that you don’t have to worry about it, but others think differently. Multiple sclerosis is caused in part by increased methanol intake. Countries that have high methanol contents in their food have increased rates of MS.

The two primary components of aspartame, phenylalanine and aspartic acid, are amino acids that are combined in a bond in the product. You consume them in the foods you eat, but they are harmless when consumed as part of natural unprocessed foods. However, when they are chemically manipulated and consumed out of the normal ratios to other amino acids, they can cause problems.

Your body initially breaks down the ester link between the two amino acids to turn them into free amino acids, which normally do not occur in these free forms in your body. These chemicals in their free form can result in immediate health consequences such as headaches, mental confusion, dizziness and seizures. The high concentrations of these chemicals in the form of aspartame flood your central nervous system and can cause excessive firing of brain neurons. A phenomenon call excitotoxicity occurs where cells are overly excited, swell, and then die. Long-term use of excitotoxins like aspartame are linked to degenerative brain diseases like Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s, and general dementia. Enough said. I’m sure you won’t be enjoying this product any time soon.

Aspartame-acesulfame Salt (E962) – AVOID

Brand Names: Twinsweet

Calories: 3 calories per gram

Glycemic Index: 0

Found in: Complete List of foods containing Aspartame-acesulfame salt

GMO Concerns: Yes. Aspartame, which this product contains, is derived from GMO ingredients.

Aspartame-acesulfame salt is an artificial sweetener marketed under the name Twinsweet. It is produced by soaking a 2-1 mixture of aspartame and acesulfame potassium in an acidic solution and allowing it to crystallize. It is composed of 64% aspartame and 36% acesulfame potassium. It is approximately 350 times as sweet as sucrose.

In North America it falls under the same regulations as aspartame and acesulfame-K, and is also approved for use in China, Russia, Hong-Kong, Australia and New Zealand. The rights to aspartame-acesulfame are owned by The NutraSweet Company who have continued to market the sweetener successfully in the USA and EU.

All the same problems associated with Aspartame can be found in Aspartame-acesulfame salt because the product is 64% aspartame. Aspartame has been reported to cause over 100 side effects. Many people have reported side effects including headaches, dizziness, nausea and even blindness. Consequently all products that contain it must carry a warning on the label. Due to the aforementioned negative health effects, it may be ill advised to consume aspartame-acesulfame salt.

Cyclamate (E952) – AVOID

Also Known As:

  • Calcium cyclamate
  • Cyclamic acid
  • Sodium cyclamate

Brand Names: Sucaryl, Cologran

Calories: 0 calories per gram

Glycemic Index: 0

Found in: Complete list of foods containing Cyclamate

GMO Concerns: No. It is a completely synthesized chemical.

This controversial high-potency sweetener was used in the United States in diet foods until 1970, at which time it was banned. However, it is approved in almost every other country and is a popular sweetener today. On the down side it is only 10% as sweet as most other artificial sweeteners and this means it is necessary to ingest 10 times the quantity.

Animal studies indicated at one time that Cyclamate caused cancer. Tests seem to show problems with rodents and primates if fed large quantities over a prolonged period. Cyclamate is not absorbed by the body and is probably safe in small quantities. It has been used for about 70 years and despite the fears, no side effects have been reported in humans. It is now believed not to cause cancer directly, but to increase the potency of other carcinogens and to harm the testes. For this reason alone I would advise choosing an alternative.

Erythritol (E968) – SAFE

Also Known As: Erythrite, Meso-erythritol, Tetrahydroxybutane

Brand Names: ZSweet, Wholesome Sweeteners, Organic Zero, Zerose, Now Foods, NuNaturals, Swerve Natural Sweeteners

Calories: 0.2 calories per gram

Glycemic Index: 0

Found in: Complete list of foods containing Erythritol

GMO Concerns: Yes. Erythritol can be derived from GMO corn.

This sugar alcohol is about 70 percent as sweet as sugar. It occurs naturally in some fruits, but virtually all of the erythritol used as a food additive is produced by fermenting glucose with various yeasts. Many companies mix it with other sweeteners, such as rebiana (from stevia), aspartame, and sucralose, to bulk up the product and mask other sweeteners’ unpleasant after-tastes.

Other than occasional allergic reactions, the only safety concern about erythritol is that eating too much of it could cause nausea. Most adults can safely consume up to about 50 grams of erythritol per day, which might be provided by about five 12-ounce soft drinks or 50 teaspoons of a sugar substitute made with stevia (but individual sensitivities vary greatly). Erythritol’s relative safety is due to its being mostly absorbed into the bloodstream and excreted unchanged in urine. Because 90% of erythritol is absorbed before it enters the large intestine, it does not normally cause laxative effects, as are often experienced after consumption of other sugar alcohols. Other sugar alcohols stir up trouble in the colon where they attract water (leading to diarrhea) or are digested by bacteria (causing gas).

Isomalt (E953) – SAFE

Also Known As:

  • Isomaltitol
  • Hydrogenated Isomaltulose

Brand Names: DiabetiSweet, ClearCut, Decomalt

Calories: 2 calories per gram

Glycemic Index: 2

Found in: Complete list of foods containing Isomalt

GMO Concerns: Yes. Manufactured from sugar. In the US, this sugar is usually derived from GMO sugar beets. In the EU, sugar currently is derived exclusively from conventional beets. In the EU, food and feed is approved that is derived from GMO sugar beets that are cultivated in North America.

This sugar alcohol is manufactured from sugar. It is often mixed with artificial sweeteners, such as sucralose, to provide more sweetening power. Isomalt is poorly absorbed by the body, which means it has only half the calories of sugar. Isomalt appears to be totally safe, but like many other sugar alcohols, large amounts can cause diarrhea and gas. Isomalt can upset the stomach because the body treats it as a dietary fiber instead of as a simple carbohydrate. Like most fibers, it can increase bowel movements, passing through the bowel in virtually undigested form. Therefore, isomalt is advised to not be consume more than 50 g per day for adults and 25 g for children. Isomalt is very useful for confectioners and chefs for making showpieces as it is much more resistant to crystallization and more malleable than sugar.

Maltitol (E965) – SAFE

Also Known As:

  • D-Maltitol
  • Dried Maltitol Syrup
  • Hydrogenated Glucose Syrup
  • Hydrogenated High Maltose-Content Glucose Syrup
  • Hydrogenated Maltose
  • Maltitol Syrup Powder

Brand Names: Lesys, Maltisweet, SweetPearl

Calories: 2 calories per gram

Glycemic Index: 36 for powder, 52 for syrup

Found in: Complete list of foods containing Maltitol

GMO Concerns: Yes. Maltose or Maltitol is usually derived from GMO corn syrup unless in a certified organic product.

Maltitol is a sugar alcohol, also called a polyol. Maltitol is derived from the hydrogenation of maltose, which comes from starch. Maltitol is most commonly derived from corn but can also be derived from wheat. The FDA recommends a daily limit of 100 grams. This is the equivalent of about four full-size nutritional bars. So if you plan on eating a whole box of nutritional bars or chocolates made with Maltitol, you may have some issues.

Many studies in humans and animals have shown maltitol to be safe as a food additive. The Joint Food and Agriculture Organization/World Health Organization Expert Committee on Food Additives (JECFA) has given Maltitol its highest safety rating, and has stated that no limits need be placed on the use of maltitol.

Lactitol (E966) – SAFE

Also Known As:

  • Lactit
  • Lactobiosit
  • Lactositol

Brand Names: LACTY

Calories: 2.4 calories per gram

Glycemic Index: 0

Found in: Complete list of foods containing Lactitol

GMO Concerns: Yes. Lactitol is derived from milk. The cows are fed GMO grain unless they are organically raised.

Lactitol is a sugar alcohol, also called a polyol. It is made from lactose, or milk sugar, so it not suitable for people with a dairy allergy or lactose intolerance. Like other sugar alcohols, lactitol is not absorbed well by the body. Lactitol also promotes colon health as a prebiotic, which feeds bacteria in the colon. However, large amounts (above 20 to 30 grams) may cause loose stools or diarrhea. Like most other sugar alcohols, lactitol can cause cramping, flatulence, and diarrhea in some individuals. Because humans lack a suitable enzyme in the small intestine to digest it, a majority of lactitol reaches the large intestine, where it then becomes fermentable to gut microbes (prebiotic) and can pull water into the gut by osmosis, causing a laxative effect. Other than this, lactitol seems perfectly safe.

Mannitol (E421) –  SAFE

Also Known As:

  • Mannite
  • D-Mannitol

Brand Names: Sold as mannitol or in combination with other ingredients. Not used as a sweetener on its own.

Calories: 1.6 calories per gram.

Glycemic Index: 2

Found in: Complete list of foods containing Mannitol

GMO Concerns: Yes. Most Mannitol commercially available is synthesized from fructose, which can be GMO. Cornstarch, from which mannitol is usually made, can consist of genetically modified corn, especially if the raw material was imported from the USA or Argentina. In the EU, genetically modified maize is a very small portion of corn crops and is not used for food.

Mannitol is a sugar alcohol, also called a polyol. Like other sugar alcohols, mannitol is not as sweet as sugar, not absorbed well by the body (which means it provides only about half as many calories per gram as table sugar). However, large amounts may have a laxative effect and cause diarrhea.  The FDA requires foods “whose reasonably foreseeable consumption may result in a daily ingestion of 20 grams of mannitol to bear this mild warning: “Excess consumption may have a laxative effect.” Other than this, Mannitol is safe.

Neohesperidine dihydrochalcone (E959) – AVOID

Also Known As: Neohesperidin DC or NHDC

Brand Names: None, not sold on its own

Calories: 0 calories per gram

Glycemic Index: 0

Found in:

  • Citrus Juice
  • Bitter foods
  • Creates creamy mouth feel in dairy foods such as yogurt and ice cream
  • Reduces the bitterness of pharmacological drugs in tablet form
  • Alcoholic (and non-alcoholic) beverages
  • Toothpaste and mouthwash
  • Condiments such as ketchup and mayonnaise
  • Animal feed

GMO Concerns: No

NHDC is used more as a flavor enhancer than a sweetener. It was discovered as part of a United States Department of Agriculture research program to find methods for masking the taste of bitter flavors in citrus juices. Neohesperidine is one such bitter compound. When put through a series of processes and then hydrogenated, it becomes NHDC, a compound roughly 1500-1800 times sweeter than sugar. It is very good at masking bitter flavors, and at bringing out subtle flavors in food. The European Union approved NHDC’s use as a sweetener in 1994. It has not been approved as a sweetener in the United States.

Research has shown that at strengths of around and above 20 ppm, NHDC can produce side effects such as nausea and migraine. This is not widely documented, however is unquestionably known within the food science communities that have worked with the product, and many recommend wearing a surgical mask when handling pure NHDC.

Neotame (E961) – SAFE

Brand Names: Sold as Neotame, but not to the consumer market. Food producers mainly use it.

Calories: 0 calories per gram

Glycemic Index: 0

Found in: Complete list of foods containing Neotame

GMO Concerns: Yes. Aspartame, from which Neotame is derived, is made with GMO ingredients.

Neotame, produced by NutraSweet Co. (maker of aspartame), claim that it is between 7,000 and 13,000 times as sweet as sugar, depending on the use, and 40 times sweeter than aspartame. Neotame is chemically related to aspartame, but the difference confers greater chemical stability, enabling the new sweetener to be used in baked foods. It is the cheapest sweetener on the market, 10% the cost of sugar and 30% the cost of HFCS (High fructose corn syrup). It was approved by the U.S. FDA in 2002 and the European Union in 2010, but is still rarely used. Neotame also is approved for use in Australia and New Zealand.

Although over 100 corporate-sponsored studies were conducted on Neotame to prove its safety prior to FDA approval, the controversy relating to a related sweetener, aspartame, has caused a stir among opponents of that additive. However, Neotame is one of only two artificial sweeteners ranked as “safe” by the consumer advocacy group Center for Science in the Public Interest.

Neotame’s main concern seems to be guilt by association. Because it is a chemical derivative of aspartame, critics of that product are also negative towards Neotame. However, given the number of products containing Neotame now on the market, there have been no reported side effects. The main reason for this may be the tiny amount of the sweetener per serving. Because of the tiny amount needed it is not even required to be named in a product’s list of ingredients, but simply to be mentioned by its E number. So if you see E961 you know it contains Neotame. Unless new information arises, it appears to be safe. Despite all these illusions of safety and the fact that it could be made with GMO ingredients, I personally would not consume it. It is based on aspartame, which is a potent neurotoxin.

Saccharin (E954) – AVOID

Also Known As:

  • Sodium saccharin
  • Calcium saccharin
  • Acid saccharin
  • Potassium saccharin

Brand Names: Sweet’N Low, Necta Sweet, Cologran, Heremesetas, Sucaryl, Sucron, Sugar Twin, Sweet 10

Calories: 0 calories per gram

Glycemic Index: 0

Found In: Complete list of foods containing Saccharin

GMO Concerns: Yes. Usually paired with another sweetener like dextrose, which does contain GMOs.

While saccharin is banned in other countries, it is still available in the United States and is making a comeback. Saccharin is again showing up in a lot of artificially sweetened foods because it is super sweet and is now blended with other sweeteners to mask its metallic taste.

Saccharin is a sulfa-based sweetener; its primary ingredient is benzoic sulfimide. Reported side effects include allergic reactions for those with sulfa allergies, nausea, diarrhea, skin problems or other allergy-related symptoms.

The Center for Science in the Public Interest states that,

Like other artificial sweeteners, it has been found to cause cancer in the urinary tract and bladder in rodents. Because of this it was pulled from the shelves because of a public outcry. In other rodent studies, saccharin has caused cancer of the uterus, ovaries, skin, blood vessels, and other organs. Companies who manufacture saccharin will tell you that it passes through your body undigested. If this is true, it makes one wonder how it gets from the intestinal tract to the bladder to cause cancer. Saccharin has also been shown to increase the cancer-causing effects of other compounds.

In 1977, the FDA proposed that saccharin be banned, because of studies that it caused cancer in animals. However, Congress intervened and permitted it to be used, provided that foods bear a warning label. It has been replaced in many products by aspartame (NutraSweet). In 1997, the diet-food industry began pressuring the U.S. and Canadian governments and the World Health Organization to take saccharin off their lists of cancer-causing chemicals. The industry acknowledges that saccharin caused bladder cancer in male rats, but argued that those tumors are caused by a mechanism that would not occur in humans. The mechanism that causes bladder cancer in rats was found in 2000 to not occur in humans or primates. However, Saccharin can still increase the cancer-causing effects of other compounds.

In May 2000, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services removed saccharin from its list of cancer-causing chemicals. Later that year, Congress passed a law removing the warning notice that likely will result in increased use in soft drinks and other foods and in a slightly greater incidence of cancer. Sweet ‘n’ Low tastes like crap anyways, so why bother?

Sorbitol (E420) – SAFE

Also Known As:

  • D-Glucitol
  • D-Glucitol syrup
  • Sorbit
  • D-sorbitol
  • Sorbol

Brand names: Sold as sorbitol or in combination with other artificial sweeteners

Calories: 2.6 calories per gram

Glycemic Index: 9

Found in: Complete list of foods containing Sorbitol

GMO Concerns: Yes. Sorbitol is made from glucose, which can be derived from corn or cornstarch. The corn used to make glucose almost always consists of genetically modified corn – especially if raw materials are imported from the USA or Argentina. In the EU, genetically modified corn is not used as raw material in the manufacture of foods, however, ingredients derived from several types of GM corn are approved in the EU. Another GMO concern is the use of enzymes in the production of Sorbitol. When converting glucose to sorbitol, enzymes are used to ‘unlock’ vegetable starch and convert it into ingredients or additives. Several of these enzymes are made with the aid of genetically modified microorganisms, e.g. amylases, glucose isomerase, and pullulanase. These enzymes are not legally required to be on the label.

Sorbitol naturally occurs in fruit and is a close relative of sugar. It is half as sweet as sugar. It is used in many diet foods. Moderate amounts of sorbitol are safe, but large amounts may have a strong laxative effect and even cause diarrhea. The FDA requires foods “whose reasonably foreseeable consumption may result in a daily ingestion of 50 grams of sorbitol” to bear the label statement: “Excess consumption may have a laxative effect.” Sorbitol may aggravate irritable bowel syndrome and other gastrointestinal conditions even from small ingested amounts.

Sucralose (E955) – AVOID

Also Known As: 4,1′,6′-trichlorogalactosucrose

Brand Names: Splenda, Nevella

Calories: 3.3 calories per gram (Splenda)

Glycemic Index: 0

Found in: Complete list of foods containing Sucralose

GMO Concerns: Yes. Splenda contains dextrose and maltodextrin, both of which are usually made from GMO corn.

Sucralose is an organochloride. Organochlorides are some of the most toxic substances on the earth (many pesticides are organochlorides and are toxic in small doses). Just because Splenda is an organochloride doesn’t mean it’s toxic, but it should raise some eyebrows. Sucralose is a synthetic additive created by chlorinating sugar. In the five step patented process of making sucralose, three chlorine molecules are added to a sugar molecule. The result: the chemical structure of the chlorine in sucralose is almost the same as that in the now-banned pesticide DDT. DDT in my green tea really gets me going in the morning.

Splenda has been shown to increase migraine headaches and needs more long-term studies to determine its safety. Other reported side effects include muscle aches, stomach cramps and diarrhea, bladder issues, skin irritation, dizziness and inflammation.

Only two clinical trials were completed and published before the FDA approved sucralose for human consumption. The two published trials had a grand total of 36 total human subjects. Hard science at its best. The longest trial at this time was conducted for only four days and looked at sucralose in relation to tooth decay, not human tolerance. Hmmm. I love how the FDA so vigorously protects the health of our citizens over corporate profit (cue: laughter).

Research has shown sucralose can cause shrinking of the thymus gland, an important immune system regulator, and liver and kidney dysfunction. A recent study by Duke University found sucralose reduces healthy intestinal bacteria, which are needed for proper digestion. However, this study was funded by the sugar industry, so I suspect that these findings may not be entirely accurate. The study was poorly designed; it needs to be repeated with an improved design before demonstrating a problem.

The Center for Science in the Public Interest reports on the latest studies:

In 2012, an independent Italian laboratory announced (but has not yet published) a study that was said to find that sucralose caused leukemia in mice. That was the same lab that several years earlier published studies indicating that aspartame caused leukemia in rats. Because of possible flaws in the aspartame studies, the findings on both artificial sweeteners need to be confirmed by other independent scientists before one could conclude that either poses a real risk to consumers.

Given the limited number of human trials available on Sucralose, we can turn to anecdotal evidence on this product’s safety. Dr. Mercola has a forum on this site where many have posted their reactions to Sucralose. Sadly, I ate a ton of this stuff when I was pregnant thinking it was a better alternative to NutraSweet. I put ten packets a day in the black or green tea I had with every meal. Now my daughter is behind one year in her speech. Could it be the cause or a contributor? I don’t know, but I’m sure it didn’t help.

Xylitol (E967) – SAFE

Also Known As: Only known as Xylitol

Brand Names:

Brand Source Country 
Euphoria Corn China
KAL Corn China
Miracle Sweet Corn China
Nature’s Provision Corn China
Now Corn China
Perfect Sweet Corn China
Poly Sweet Corn China
Smart Sweet Organic
Unique Sweet Corn China
vitamin Shoppe Corn China
XyloPure Corn China
XyloSweet Corn China

Calories: 2 calories per gram

Glycemic Index: 7

Found in: Complete list of foods containing Xylitol

GMO Concerns: Yes. Xylitol is usually derived from corn, which is almost always GMO.

Xylitol resembles sugar in consistency and taste, but has a third fewer calories. It has the same level of sweetness as sugar, but is a sugar alcohol, which can cause some people intestinal problems. Xylitol is found in fruits and vegetables, but most is made from corn and vulnerable to being GMO. Birch Tree derived xylitol is a great alternative for those who want to avoid corn. Daily consumption of more than 25g may cause diarrhea. If this happens, reduce intake or discontinue use. It can cause other gastrointestinal issues, such as gas and bloating.

E Number Index for Sweeteners

E420 Sorbitol – Sugar Alcohol

E421 Mannitol – Sugar Alcohol

E422 Glycerol – Sugar Alcohol

E950 Acesulfame K – Artificial Sweetener

E951 Aspartame – Artificial Sweetener

E952 Cyclamate – Artificial Sweetener

E953 Isomalt – Sugar Alcohol

E954 Saccharin – Artificial Sweetener

E955 Sucralose – Artificial Sweetener

E956 Alitame – Artificial Sweetener

E957 Thaumatin – Natural Sweetener

E958 Glycyrrhizin – Natural Sweetener

E959 Neohesperidin DC – Artificial Sweetener

E960 Stevioside – Natural Sweetener

E961 Neotame – Artificial Sweetener

E962 Aspartame-acesulfame Salt – Artificial Sweetener

E965 Maltitol – Sugar Alcohol

E966 Lactitol – Sugar Alcohol

E967 Xylitol – Sugar Alcohol

E968 Erythritol – Sugar Alcohol

My Advice

Artificial sweeteners can be less carcinogenic than sucrose (table sugar). But why use artificial sweeteners whose safety is clearly not demonstrated? If you must use natural sugar substitutes, at least use safe alternatives like Stevia, Xylitol and Lakanto.

Many trying to get off sugar think they can still have their cake and eat it, too. Generally, you reach for artificial sweeteners for several reasons: weight loss or trying to kick a sugar addiction. Sadly, most artificial sweeteners do not accomplish these health goals: they don’t help you lose weight and they can make your sweet cravings worse.

If you turn to artificial sweeteners to help you with cravings, they are not going to help with this problem. Artificial sweeteners actually increase cravings by continuing your addiction to super-sweet tasting foods. It will only take three weeks of complete abstinence of sweet tasting substances to abolish your sweet cravings (psychological cravings will remain, however). You simply have to avoid all sweet tasting foods and artificial sweeteners during this time and your cravings will subside.

Are you using artificial sweeteners for weight loss? While they have little or no calories, they are not helping you to lose weight. Most of these sweet chemicals cause your insulin to rise. When insulin rises, your blood sugar is lowered. Low blood sugar causes you to crave and eat more. Studies have shown that people who consume artificial sweeteners eat more calories than people who don’t for this reason. Additionally, this rise in insulin signals your body to store fat or not use it as fuel. So, the weight stays on your body.

As we have learned in this article, many artificial sweeteners can do more harm than good. If you are looking for a way to support your system –  in addition to avoiding the artificial sweeteners above – I recommend taking Daily Detox. Daily Detox can help facilitate the body’s natural excretion of these pollutants from your system. It has helped me detox so that I may protect my health, as well as maintain a clean and healthy lifestyle.


Click Here for References+

1. Blaylock, Russell, MD. Excitotoxins: The Taste That Kills. Health Press (NM), 2006
2. Center for Science in the Public Interest. Food Additives.

3. Center for Science in the Public Interest. FDA Approves New Artificial Sweetener, Advantame. May 21,2014.

4. FAO/WHO Food Standards. Codex General Standard for Food Additives (GSFA) Online Database.
5. Giacaman RA, Campos P, Muñoz-Sandoval C, Castro RJ. Carcinogenic potential of commercial sweeteners in an experimental biofilm caries model on enamel.
Arch Oral Biol. April 27, 2013.
6. Gurney, J.G., Pogoda, J.M., and Holly, E.A. Aspartame Consumption in Relation to Childhood Brain Tumor Risk: Results from a Case-Control Study.
Natl Cancer Inst 89 (1997): 1072-1074

7. Healy, Melissa. Los Angeles Times. May 21, 2014. FDA Approves New Artificial Sweetener.

8. Horvath, Stephanie M. Wall Street Journal. July 8, 2002. NutraSweet Gets FDA Approval for Artificial Sweetener Neotame.

9. Hyman, Mark, MD. Artificial Sweeteners Could Be Sabotaging Your Diet.June 19th, 2010.
10. Mercola, Joseph, OD. Artificial Sweeteners — More Dangerous than You Ever Imagined. October 13, 2009
11. ** The Potential Dangers of Sucralose (Splenda). December 3, 2000.
12.** The Potential Dangers of Sucralose. December 3, 2000.
13. ** Sweet Deception. Thomas Nelson, 2006.
14. Sucralose (Splenda?) US Product List. December 3, 2000.

15. McFarland, Elisha. Natutal News. Advantame – The Newest Artifiical Sweetener Approved By the FDA. July 16, 2014.

16. Non-GMO Shopping Guide. Invisible GMO Ingredients.
17. Olney, J.W., Farber, N.B., Spitznagel, E., and Robbins, L.N. “Increasing Brain Tumor Rates: Is There a Link to Aspartame?” J. Neuropathol Exp Neurol 55 (1996): 1115:123
18. Skae, Teya. The Harmful Effects of Sugar and Choosing Healthy Alternatives. February 21, 2008.
19. Soffritti M, Belpoggi F, Tibaldi E, et al: Life-span exposure to low doses of aspartame beginning during prenatal life increases cancer effects in rats. Environ Health Perspect. 2007 Sep;115(9):1293-7.
20. Artificial Sweeteners.
21. Sugar and Sweetener Mannitol.
22. Sweet Misery. Documentary.
23. Roberts, HJ. Aspartame (NutraSweet): Is it Safe? The Charles Press, 1990
24. Patel RM, Sarma R, Grimsley E: Popular sweetener sucralose as a migraine trigger. Headache. 2006 Sep;46(8):1303-4.
Swithers SE, Davidson TL. A role for sweet taste: Calorie predictive relations in energy regulation by rats. Behavioral Neuroscience. 2008 Feb;122(1):161-73.
25. Wells, S.D. Health Basics: What is Aspartame? Sunday, December 04, 2011.
26. Acesulfame Potassium.
27. Advantame.

28. Aspartame-acesulfame salt.
29. Isomalt.
30. Lactitol.
31. Maltitol.
32. Mannitol.
33. Neohesperidin dihydrochalcone.
34. Neotame.
35. Saccharin.
36. Sorbitol.
37. Tagatose.

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Dr Wendy Myers, ND is a detox expert, functional diagnostic nutritionist, NES Bioenergetic Practitioner, and founder of She is the #1 bestselling author of Limitless Energy: How to Detox Toxic Metals to End Exhaustion and Chronic Fatigue . Additionally, Wendy is the host of The Heavy Metals Summit, the Myers Detox Podcast, and the Supercharged Podcast. Passionate about the importance of detox to live a long and healthy life, she created the revolutionary Myers Detox Protocol , and Mitochondria Detox kit after working with thousands of clients, as well as a range of supplements to help you detox from everyday living and maintain a healthy lifestyle!

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