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artificial sweetener

Artificial Sweeteners Explained

Posted 12.11.17 | Nutrition Specialist

What are artificial sweeteners?

Artificial sweeteners are altered versions of naturally occurring compounds. They taste sweet, and at times can be much sweeter than table sugar. That means that very small amounts of artificial sweeteners can be used in foods to match the sweetness provided by sugar.

Why are artificial sweeteners used?

Artificial sweeteners are usually used in foods and beverages to replace simple sugars. This is a common way to reduce the calories in beverages, like diet sodas. They’re also used in sugar-free candies and desserts designed for people with diabetes, who must be careful about and monitor their sugar and carbohydrate intake.

What about artificial sweeteners in Neocate®?

In hypoallergenic formulas, like some Neocate formulas, artificial sweeteners are used in place of simple sugars, but not for weight loss. It’s important to note that artificial sweeteners are not used in our Infant products and are used in products intended for those over the age 1. They’re used because unflavored hypoallergenic formulas can have strong bitter tastes. The best way to make them taste better is to increase the sweetness. Unfortunately, this would require so much natural sugar that the formula would become unhealthy and not nutritionally balanced. By using small amounts of artificial sweeteners, the taste of the formula can be improved without adding loads of sugars.

Several Neocate formulas use an artificial sweetener. Other formula brands often use multiple artificial sweeteners in a given formula, to help balance out aftertaste. However, any Neocate formula with artificial sweeteners will only use a single artificial sweetener. This is because some families prefer a specific artificial sweetener, so this provides them with options.

Most of the flavored Neocate formulas use sucralose, which has a balanced sweet profile and has been popular in recent years. A few of the flavored Neocate products use acesulfame potassium, which works well with citrus flavors.

Neocate Products Artificial Sweetener
Neocate® Syneo® Infant None
Neocate® Infant DHA/ARA None
Neocate® Nutra None
Neocate® Junior, Unflavored None
Neocate® Junior with Prebiotics, Unflavored None
Neocate® Splash, Unflavored None
Neocate® Junior, Tropical Acesulfame Potassium
Neocate® Junior, Chocolate Sucralose
Neocate® Junior with Prebiotics, Vanilla Sucralose
Neocate® Junior with Prebiotics, Strawberry Sucralose
Neocate® Splash, Grape Sucralose
Neocate® Splash, Orange-Pineapple Sucralose
Neocate® Splash, Tropical Fruit Acesulfame Potassium

Learn more about carbohydrates used in Neocate.

Have you tried a flavored Neocate formula yet? How did you like the taste? We always enjoy hearing from you!


Rob McCandlish is a registered dietitian nutritionist (RDN) who joined the Nutricia team in 2010. Rob has years of experience at Nutricia following food allergy research, working with Neocate products, talking with Neocate families and learning about the science behind Neocate and food allergies. Rob has two nephews who both used Neocate for their cow milk allergies!

About Us

Food Allergy Living is a resource for parents of children with food allergies, brought to you by Nutricia, the makers of Neocate. For more in-depth information about our purpose & authors, see our About Food Allergy Living page.