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Nutrients 2018, 10(5), 615; https://doi.org/10.3390/nu10050615

The Impact of Caloric and Non-Caloric Sweeteners on Food Intake and Brain Responses to Food: A Randomized Crossover Controlled Trial in Healthy Humans

1
Department of Physiology, Faculty of Biology and Medicine, University of Lausanne, 1005 Lausanne, Switzerland
2
The Laboratory for Investigative Neurophysiology (The LINE), Departments of Radiology and Clinical Neurosciences, University of Lausanne and Lausanne University Hospital, 1011 Lausanne, Switzerland
3
Electroencephalography Brain Mapping Core, Center for Biomedical Imaging (CIBM) of Lausanne and Geneva, 1015 Lausanne, Switzerland
4
Department of Hearing and Speech Sciences, Vanderbilt University, Nashville, TN 37232, USA
5
Department of Ophthalmology, Jules Gonin Eye Hospital, 1004 Lausanne, Switzerland
6
Metabolic Center, Hôpital Intercantonal de la Broye, 1470 Estavayer-le-Lac, Switzerland
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 12 April 2018 / Revised: 9 May 2018 / Accepted: 10 May 2018 / Published: 15 May 2018
(This article belongs to the Special Issue The Impact of Beverages on Ingestive Behavior)
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Abstract

Whether non-nutritive sweetener (NNS) consumption impacts food intake behavior in humans is still unclear. Discrepant sensory and metabolic signals are proposed to mislead brain regulatory centers, in turn promoting maladaptive food choices favoring weight gain. We aimed to assess whether ingestion of sucrose- and NNS-sweetened drinks would differently alter brain responses to food viewing and food intake. Eighteen normal-weight men were studied in a fasted condition and after consumption of a standardized meal accompanied by either a NNS-sweetened (NNS), or a sucrose-sweetened (SUC) drink, or water (WAT). Their brain responses to visual food cues were assessed by means of electroencephalography (EEG) before and 45 min after meal ingestion. Four hours after meal ingestion, spontaneous food intake was monitored during an ad libitum buffet. With WAT, meal intake led to increased neural activity in the dorsal prefrontal cortex and the insula, areas linked to cognitive control and interoception. With SUC, neural activity in the insula increased as well, but decreased in temporal regions linked to food categorization, and remained unchanged in dorsal prefrontal areas. The latter modulations were associated with a significantly lower total energy intake at buffet (mean kcal ± SEM; 791 ± 62) as compared to WAT (942 ± 71) and NNS (917 ± 70). In contrast to WAT and SUC, NNS consumption did not impact activity in the insula, but led to increased neural activity in ventrolateral prefrontal regions linked to the inhibition of reward. Total energy intake at the buffet was not significantly different between WAT and NNS. Our findings highlight the differential impact of caloric and non-caloric sweeteners on subsequent brain responses to visual food cues and energy intake. These variations may reflect an initial stage of adaptation to taste-calorie uncoupling, and could be indicative of longer-term consequences of repeated NNS consumption on food intake behavior. View Full-Text
Keywords: electroencephalography; non-nutritive sweeteners; sweet taste; visual food cues; food intake; ad libitum buffet electroencephalography; non-nutritive sweeteners; sweet taste; visual food cues; food intake; ad libitum buffet
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Crézé, C.; Candal, L.; Cros, J.; Knebel, J.-F.; Seyssel, K.; Stefanoni, N.; Schneiter, P.; Murray, M.M.; Tappy, L.; Toepel, U. The Impact of Caloric and Non-Caloric Sweeteners on Food Intake and Brain Responses to Food: A Randomized Crossover Controlled Trial in Healthy Humans. Nutrients 2018, 10, 615.

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