EFSA confirms the benefits of aspartame for people with diabetes and for dental health

EFSA's Scientific Opinion on health claims related to low calorie sweeteners released on 30 June 2011 extends two favourable opinions given previously to all low calorie sweeteners, including aspartame.

The EFSA Panel confirmed that, "consumption of foods/drinks containing aspartame, for example, instead of sugar induces a lower blood sugar rise after meals compared to sugar-containing foods/drinks". This is of particular help to people with diabetes, who should control their blood glucose levels.

The tooth-friendliness of aspartame has also been confirmed: the EFSA Panel concluded that "maintaining tooth mineralisation, by reducing tooth demineralisation resulting from acid production in plaque caused by the fermentation of carbohydrates, is a beneficial physiological effect". Dental health claims, including "non-cariogenic" and "tooth-friendly", can be made on products containing aspartame and other low calorie sweeteners provided that they do not lower the plaque pH to below 5.7 in the 30 minutes after they are consumed.

Because aspartame has an excellent taste, low calorie foods and drinks sweetened with aspartame are popular with people who have to manage their diet in order to control diabetes. Similarly, aspartame is used to make many of the most successful tooth-friendly confectionery products.

1 July 2011