Sugar: Other Sweet-Tasting Substances

Appears in

Oxford Companion to Food

Oxford Companion to Food

By Alan Davidson

Published 2014

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In addition to the true sugars, such as those mentioned above, there are many sugar-like and sweet-tasting substances. Some, although closely resembling sugars, are technically alcohols, such as mannitol (present in some kinds of manna); glycerol, the source of the sweet taste of glycerine; and sorbitol, used to sweeten diabetic confectionery. Any sweet taste in a natural food is almost invariably due to a sugar or sugar-like substance, apart from a few oddities such as the miracle berry (see sweeteners, both for this and for artificial sweeteners, which are quite a different matter).