Neotame is a white crystalline powder manufactured from two amino acids, phenylalanine and aspartic acid, which are the same two amino acids used to make aspartame. Neotame doesn't have a bitter metallic after-taste, and it's about 7,000 to 13,000 times sweeter than sugar, so very little is needed to sweeten foods, so it doesn't add any calories to your diet.
Neotame is not poisonous, and it doesn't cause cancer. Some people have concerns about the small amount of methanol released during the metabolism of neotame. Methanol is also found naturally in many foods such as fruit juices. In fact, fruit and vegetable juices contain much more methanol than the same amount of diet soda sweetened with aspartame. Your liver can remove the formaldehyde quickly and safely from your body.
How to Use Neotame
Neotame may become a popular artificial sweetener for beverages, chewing gum, and confections as part of the Nutrasweet brand.
Research and Safety
Neotame has been shown to be safe in more than 130 studies by the FDA. Although it is made with the same amino acids as aspartame, it is metabolized differently and is therefore not a source of phenylalanine. This means that people with phenylketonuria can use neotame safely.
Other No-Calorie Sweeteners
"Position of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics: appropriate use of nutritive and non-nutritive sweeteners." J Am Diet Assoc. 2004 Feb;104(2):255-275. Accessed July 13, 2010.
US Food and Drug Administration. "Artificial Sweeteners: No Calories ... Sweet!" Published July 2006. Accessed July 13, 2010.