Low-Calorie Sweetened Beverages and Cardiometabolic Health

Published: July 30, 2018

young woman showing drinking glass with water
  • Demand for food and beverages with lower sugar content has grown due to strong evidence linking sugar-sweetened beverages (SSBs) to weight gain and adverse cardiometabolic health, but there’s also interest in how beverages with low calorie sweeteners (LCS) affect energy balance and cardiometabolic health.
  • This Advisory analyzes observational and clinical studies and the findings of government agencies on cardiometabolic outcomes of beverages with LCS and highlights future research needs.
  • The Advisory encourages the use of alternatives to SSBs, with a focus on water. It advises against prolonged consumption of beverages with LCS in children, but notes that, in children with diabetes, substituting beverages with LCS for SSBs might prevent excessive glucose excursions. A similar substitution can also work for adults used to a sweet-tasting beverage and for whom water, at least initially, is not a desirable option.