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Cravings for a sweet treat come from time to time, and it can be frustrating to try to balance taste and calories. Luckily, science has made products that allow for the enjoyment of decadent foods with fewer calories.
One option is to substitute low-sugar products - such as fresh fruit, low-fat or fat-free milk, homemade snack mixes, and low-fat or fat-free yogurt or frozen yogurt - for high-sugar choices. Another is to use nonnutritive sweeteners (NNS; also known as sugar substitutes, lowcalorie sweeteners, or artificial sweeteners). They taste similar to sugar, contain little to no calories, and do not provide many vital nutrients. Nonnutritive sweeteners are much sweeter than sugar - hundreds to thousands of times sweeter - so only a small amount is needed to sweeten foods and beverages. Typically, food producers combine more than one NNS to sweeten products.
Virginia Cooperative Extension materials are available for public use, reprint, or citation without further permission, provided the use includes credit to the author and to Virginia Cooperative Extension, Virginia Tech, and Virginia State University.
Issued in furtherance of Cooperative Extension work, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, Virginia State University, and the U.S. Department of Agriculture cooperating. Edwin J. Jones, Director, Virginia Cooperative Extension, Virginia Tech, Blacksburg; M. Ray McKinnie, Administrator, 1890 Extension Program, Virginia State University, Petersburg.
October 24, 2013