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Can I have Sugar Substitute without Sugar Please?

Am I just asking for too much? I was waiting for my tea to steep and I picked up a packet of Equal. Out of curiosity I looked at the back and I noticed that the main ingredient was not Aspartame (NutraSweet®), but indeed it was Dextrose. Dextrose is a form of sugar! You would think the one place you could avoid sugar is in a sugar substitute. I guess not. The same thing goes for Sweet 'N Low as well!

Here are some other interesting tidbits about these two sweeteners that have garnered themselves a place in the Gallery of the Stupid.



Here is a packet of Equal. The ingredients list as follows:
Dextrose with maltodextrin, aspartame (NutraSweet® brand)

This package contains less than 1 gram of carbohydrates.


Sweet 'N Low

Sweet 'N Low

When we get to the packet of Sweet 'N Low shown above, we find a very similar story. Although Sweet 'N Low proudly lists Saccharin as an ingredient (but only 3.6% of the ingredients are Saccharin), it also lists this rather unpleasant warning:

INGREDIENTS: Nutritive Dextrose, 3.6% Calcium Saccharin (36 mg per packet), Cream of Tartar, Calcium Silicate (an anti-caking agent).

Dextrose noun
The dextrorotatory form of glucose, C6H12O6H2O, found naturally in animal and plant tissue and derived synthetically from starch. Also called dextroglucose.

Glucose, dextrose, or grape sugar (empirical formula: C6H12O6), white crystalline sugar; somewhat less sweet-tasting than sucrose (table sugar), it is found in fruits and honey. Glucose is the major source of energy in animal metabolism. It requires no digestion prior to absorption into the bloodstream. A monosaccharide (see carbohydrate), glucose can be obtained by hydrolysis of a variety of more complex carbohydrates, e.g., maltose, cellulose, or glycogen. It is commercially made from cornstarch (see starch) and is used in sweetening candy, chewing gum, jellies, and various foods. Glucose present in urine may be a symptom of diabetes.

Saccharin noun
A white crystalline powder, C7H5NO3S, having a taste about 500 times sweeter than cane sugar, used as a calorie-free sweetener.

Saccharin (benzosulfamide) is discovered accidentally at Baltimore's new Johns Hopkins University by chemist Ira Remsen, 33, and his German student Constantin Fahlberg who are investigating the reactions of a class of coal tar derivatives (toluene sulfamides). They will publish a scientific description of the new compound in February 1880 calling special attention to its sweetness. Fahlberg will file a patent claim without mention of Remsen's contribution, he will return to Germany, obtain financial backing, and organize a company to produce his sugar substitute "saccharine"-at least 300 times sweeter than sugar and a boon to diabetics (see Wiley, 1907; sodium cyclamate, 1937).

Aspartame noun
An artificial sweetener, C14H18N2O5, formed from aspartic acid.

[aspart(ic acid) + (phenyl)a(lanine) + m(ethyl) + e(ster).

The aspartame, dextrose and saccharin definitions are from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Third Edition copyright © 1992 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Electronic version licensed from INSO Corporation. All rights reserved. The discovery of saccharin quote is from The People's Chronology is licensed from Henry Holt and Company, Inc. Copyright© 1995, 1996 by James Trager. All rights reserved. The glucose quote is from The Concise Columbia Encyclopedia is licensed from Columbia University Press. Copyright© 1995 by Columbia University Press. All rights reserved. Equal, NutraSweet and the NutraSweet symbol are registered trademarks of the NutraSweet Company. Sweet 'N Low brand (Pat. No. 3,625,711) is a trademark of the Cumberland Packaging Corp.

This is a parody of the NutraSweet and Sweet 'N Low. No connection to either company is implied or inferred. All the events, companies and people are fictitious. Any similarities should be considered coincidental. If you would like to order any of the products or need more information, you cannot have it because they do not really exist.

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