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Nutrients 2018, 10(2), 257; https://doi.org/10.3390/nu10020257

Non-Nutritive Sweeteners in the Packaged Food Supply—An Assessment across 4 Countries

1
The George Institute for Global Health, University of New South Wales, Sydney, NSW 2042, Australia
2
Carolina Population Center, The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Chapel Hill, NC 27516, USA
3
Department of Nutrition, The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Chapel Hill, NC 27516, USA
4
National Institute for Health Innovation, School of Population Health, Tamaki Campus, The University of Auckland, Auckland 1072, New Zealand
5
Nutrition and Health Research Center (CINyS), Instituto Nacional de Salud Pública (INSP), Universidad No. 655 Colonia Santa María Ahuacatitlán, 2100 Cuernavaca, Mexico
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 22 December 2017 / Revised: 13 February 2018 / Accepted: 21 February 2018 / Published: 24 February 2018
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Non-Nutritive Sweeteners: A Global Perspective)
Full-Text   |   PDF [256 KB, uploaded 24 February 2018]

Abstract

Increased interest among consumers in the reduction of dietary sugar intake has led to the wider availability of food products containing non-nutritive sweeteners (NNS). However, the extent to which NNS are currently being used by manufacturers to sweeten processed food and beverage products, and how NNS may be displacing added sugars as a sweetener is unknown. The current study utilized branded food composition databases from Australia, Mexico, New Zealand and the US to determine the percentage of processed food and beverage products for which there are nutrition data containing NNS and to compare total sugar density (g per 100 mL for beverages and g per 100 g for foods) between products with and without NNS. Ordinary least squares regression at the country-product level was performed to examine associations between presence of NNS and total sugar. Across all countries, 5% of products contained at least one NNS, with the highest prevalence among beverages (22%). Mexico had the highest percentage of products with NNS (11%), as compared to the United States (US) (4%), New Zealand (1%), and Australia (<1%). The presence of NNS was associated with lower mean total sugar density among beverages (range across countries: 7.5 to 8.7 g per 100 mL) and among foods (23.2 to 25.5 g per 100 g). Products with both added sugar ingredients and NNS had a lower overall mean total sugar density when compared to products containing only added sugar ingredients. Due to paucity of data on sales and market shares across these countries, our results do not reflect the extent to which consumers purchase NNS containing products. Continued monitoring of NNS in the food supply, extension of work from these data, and inclusion of market shares of products will be important as more countries introduce policies to reduce sugar. View Full-Text
Keywords: non-nutritive sweeteners; sugars; processed foods; beverages; Australia; Mexico; New Zealand; United States non-nutritive sweeteners; sugars; processed foods; beverages; Australia; Mexico; New Zealand; United States
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited (CC BY 4.0).

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Dunford, E.K.; Taillie, L.S.; Miles, D.R.; Eyles, H.; Tolentino-Mayo, L.; Ng, S.W. Non-Nutritive Sweeteners in the Packaged Food Supply—An Assessment across 4 Countries. Nutrients 2018, 10, 257.

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