Are low-calorie sweeteners fattening?

Toby Smithson
Nutrition & Dietetics

No, low calorie sweeteners are not fattening but that is not to say that foods containing low calorie sweeteners may not have added calories. Check the nutrition facts label to get the information you need on the caloric content of the food product as well as the total carbohydrate; grams of fat; and the portion size for one serving. A product could be high in calories that use a low calorie sweetener but the low calorie sweetener itself provides a small amount to no calories.

Foods with low- or reduced-calorie sweeteners can have fewer calories than foods made with sugar and other caloric sweeteners. That can help if you're trying to cut calories. However, some sugar-free foods or products that use low-calorie sweeteners actually have more calories and may have more fat than the sugar-sweetened versions. When you're considering foods with low- or reduced-calorie sweeteners, always check the Nutrition Facts on the label. By comparing the calories in the sugar-free version to the regular version, you'll see whether you're really getting fewer calories. You'll also want to compare the fat content of the labels. Some people choose the regular version of a food and cut back on the serving size instead of buying the sugar-free version.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.