We hear this question all too often “Is aspartame keto-friendly?”.
There is a lot of debate regarding this topic, most often between public opinion and scientific research.
Aspartame is a low-calorie, artificial sweetener, with less than 1g of carbs per serving. Therefore, making it a keto-friendly sugar alternative.
- What is Aspartame, and is it Keto Friendly?
- Will Aspartame Kick You Out Of Ketosis?
- How Much Aspartame Can You Consume on the Keto Diet?
- Is Aspartame Okay on a Dirty Keto Diet?
- Is Aspartame Safe to Consume on a Keto Diet?
- Is Aspartame Keto Friendly When Trying to Lose Weight?
- Should You Use Aspartame While on the Keto Diet?
- Aspartame Q&A
With a little help from science, research, and some of the best experts around, we will get to the bottom of it all.
And we will provide you with the information you need to decide if aspartame is right for your keto journey.
What is Aspartame, and is it Keto Friendly?
Aspartame is an artificial sweetener containing two natural amino acids aspartic acid, and phenylalanine.
This product is much sweeter than regular sugars but without a high caloric count (4g per 37 mg packet.)
According to the facts, aspartame is keto friendly because it is a non-sucrose food item. Therefore, you can consume the product without going over your sugar limit for the day (because it is not sugar), keeping your carbohydrate level in check
In spite of this information, there is a large number of keto’ers out there who won’t touch the stuff at all.
Why? You Ask
To clarify, some people choose to skip the artificial sweetener because studies are so limited that it is hard to say if aspartame is safe to consume for anyone let alone those trying to keep their metabolism under control.
What’s even more unnerving is that many studies prove aspartame and other artificial sweeteners actually raise your insulin levels more than table sugar. (*)
Most importantly, this increase of insulin happens without having any effect on your blood sugar levels—in turn, reducing ketone production.
Will Aspartame Kick You Out Of Ketosis?
With less than 1g of carbs per serving (37 mg packet), Aspartame will not kick you out of ketosis.
Ketosis is a metabolic state that occurs when there is a depletion of carbohydrates in the body. Subsequently, the body uses ketones for energy instead of carbs.
The average keto-er shouldn’t consume more than 20g-50g of carbs per day. The exact number will vary depending on each body type and goal.
How Much Aspartame Can You Consume on the Keto Diet?
The great thing about aspartame is how sweet it tastes without requiring you to need much.
To clarify, this artificial sugar is 200 times sweeter than table sugar, allowing you to add less of the powder to your food to get the sweet taste we all love.
With one packet of aspartame-containing around 1g of carbs, it is safe to say you can have a few packs of it each day without ruining your keto diet.
With that said, all things are only good in moderation. Albeit, you could have 20 packets, (if you eat nothing else containing carbs) we wouldn’t recommend it.
What foods can you find aspartame in?
- Diet soda
- Sugar-free gum
- Lite yogurts
- Sugar-free candy
- Slim fast (diet supplements)
- Reduced calorie fruit juices
Is Aspartame Okay on a Dirty Keto Diet?
Before we can talk about the use of aspartame on dirty keto, let us discuss exactly what dirty keto is.
On the ketogenic diet, you should balance a low carb, medium protein, and high fat menu, eating whole foods and sticking to your net carbs and nutrition intake.
On the other hand, on dirty keto, you stay within the low carb limits, but it doesn’t matter where those carbs come from.
With that said, yes, you can have aspartame on the keto and dirty keto diet as long as you are still staying within your allotted carbs.
There are a lot of keto-ers out there who believe if you eat anything artificial you aren’t following the diet properly.
Is Aspartame Safe to Consume on a Keto Diet?
According to the FDA, a safe, acceptable daily intake of aspartame is between 40-50 milligrams, per kilogram of body weight, per day. (*)
Let us break that down for you. A person weighing 125lbs or 57kg can consume 2280 mg of aspartame per day safely.
If one Nutrasweet packet contains 37kgs, you can ingest around 61 packets without any negative side effects.
But wait! That is only for the typical person on a normal daily diet. Remember, each packet of this artificial sweetener contains 1g of carbs.
If you can only have 20gs of carbs per day, you should try to limit your aspartame intake to allow your body room for more nutritious food.
Since aspartame, like all other sugars, provides low to no nutritional value, we recommend you save your carbs for bigger and better things.
Foods you should eat on keto:
OliveEggs (free range)
Most oils (olive, coconut)
Seeds (flax, sunflower, chia)
Is Aspartame Safe to Consume?
We have found a lot of mixed reviews about the safety of the use of artificial sugars.
Nevertheless, many studies conducted (specifically on aspartame) show the product is safe if you only consume the recommended amount.
In our research, we found a lot of claims that link aspartame to cancers, heart disease, Parkinson’s, and other serious illnesses, but the proof just isn’t there. (*)
Alternatively, what we did prove was that most of those studies were later proven flawed, or the only links were only made with rats and never when used in human consumption.
Rest assured there is no proof, with decades of research, that enjoying aspartame is unsafe to consume.
Is Aspartame Keto Friendly When Trying to Lose Weight?
There are many reasons people decide to start eating keto. The most common thread is the health benefits associated with this diet.
- Eating fewer carbs makes you feel better physically
- Finding out you have pre-diabetes or diabetes
- Wanting to lose weight quickly (burning fat not carbs)
- Reduces acne
- May improve heart health
- May decrease the risk of some cancers
If you are one of those looking for a great diet to drop a few unwanted pounds, keto is an ideal way to get the job done.
With that said, you have to be very careful how you go about utilizing the program and which foods you consume, even those labeled as “diet” friendly.
While researching, we found plenty of resources to prove that there isn’t enough evidence aspartame can cause serious illness, but we did find proof that it can impede weight loss goals.
How Aspartame Can Ruin Your Weightloss Goals
In spite of aspartame being considered a low calorie, no fat, low carb food, it might not be as helpful to losing weight as you think.
A study recently conducted at Yale shows that there is actually a link between aspartame and weight gain. Yup, that diet food you reach for to sweeten your coffee while keeping your calories low could be destroying all your hard work. (*, *)
How aspartame can impact your weight loss:
- Aspartame with other carbs or fats can slow your metabolism
- Aspartame causes most people to crave more sweets
- Aspartame increases hunger pains
- Aspartame alters your gut biomes that breakdown the foods you eat
- Many foods with aspartame are processed
Should You Use Aspartame While on the Keto Diet?
The census says aspartame, used in small quantities, is okay for keto.
Aspartame, like most other foods, can affect each person differently. If you notice any side effects, stop using it right away. (*)
Common side effects of aspartame
- Unexplainable mood swings
- Abdominal cramps, nausea, vomiting
- Vision problems
- Memory loss
Apart from the side effects, and based on the goal of the keto diet (staying in ketosis), we feel that if you want to use aspartame on keto you should go for it.
Do you still have some questions about aspartame while following a keto diet? Here are some answers from the experts.
Is Aspartame Safe on Keto Long Term?
According to most studies we’ve seen, there are no indications that long-term aspartame use will affect your state of ketosis.
Can You Drink Diet Soda on Keto?
Typical 12-ounce diet soda contains roughly 180mg of aspartame, making it okay to have while on keto.
Can Aspartame Affect Ketosis?
In very high doses, aspartame can affect your state of ketosis. Keeping your intake below the recommended daily amount will help you stay on track.
Can You Get Apartame Poisioning?
There is no proof to suggest aspartame poisoning is a common occurrence and is only seen in people with a rare medical condition called phenylketonuria (PKU) or those who are allergic to artificial sweeteners.
Summing Things Up,
We believe that aspartame is keto-friendly and, when consumed in small quantities, will keep your body in ketosis, allowing you to reap the benefits the keto diet provides.
Remember, moderation is always key no matter which diet you follow, so keep your aspartame consumption to a healthy and safe level.