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[ARTICLE] Do Different Sweeteners Alter Satiety?
Filed Under: Nutrition | Published: Dec 6, 2012 | Author: Dr. Monsivais

Do Different Sweeteners Alter Satiety?

One target for partial blame for rising obesity rates among Americans has been the use of colas sweetened with sucrose or high-fructose corn syrup (HFCS). HFCS began to replace sucrose in soft drinks at about the same time that obesity rates in America began to rapidly increase. The argument that HFCS-sweetened beverages play a role in the obesity epidemic rests partly on the notion that free fructose blunts the satiety response more strongly than do other sweeteners.

A study to test sweetness and satiety

A team of researchers at the University of Washington, Seattle, recently designed a test to study the effects of colas sweetened with HFCS on hunger and satiety. In a small study of 37 volunteers aged 20-29, Dr. Pablo Monsivais and colleagues evaluated the relative effects of commercial beverages containing sucrose or HFCS on hunger, satiety, and energy intakes at the next meal. They used a within-subject design for the study.

Two hours after a standard breakfast, the 19 men and 18 women drank isocaloric colas (215 kcal) sweetened with sucrose, HFCS-42 (42% fructose), or HFCS-55 (55% fructose). Diet cola (2 kca), 1%-fat milk (215 kcal), and no beverage acted as the controls. The 5 beverages were consumed at 10:10 am. The volunteers rated their degree of hunger, thirst, and satiety with the use of computerized visual analog scales at baseline and at 20-minute intervals after drinking the liquids.

At 12:30 pm, the volunteers were served a tray lunch containing 1708 kcal, and individual energy intakes were measured. The set meal included a variety of foods: 2 grains, 2 types of fruit, 2 candies, 2 vegetables, 2 cheeses, 2 meats, 1 yogurt, 1 ice cream cup, hummus, chips, and water. Participants were told they could eat as little or as much as they wanted, and could have additional unlimited amounts of water or foods as well. A large cup with 20 fluid oz of water was provided. The free sugar content of sucrose-sweetened colas was evaluated during the study.

All colas were perceived as being alike

The 3 colas, which were sweetened with sucrose, HFCS 55 or HFCS 44, were all perceived as equally sweet and significantly sweeter than diet soda. Dr. Monsivais and colleagues found no differences in effects on hunger, satiety, or short-term energy intakes between sucrose- and HFCS-sweetened colas. The three caloric beverages tended to partially suppress energy intakes at lunch, whereas the no-beverage and diet beverage conditions did not; the effect was significant only for 1% fat milk.

The study was funded by the following sponsors: the American Beverage Association, Corn Refiners Association and the National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research.

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