In response to a continued onslaught by various diet crazes, the US sugar industry will launch a national advertising campaign touting sugar's benefits as an all-natural sweetener.

Long portrayed as a principal cause of America's obesity problem, and anathema to low-carb dieters, the Washington-based Sugar Association is using a multimedia campaign to spread positive messages.

Adverts will stress that sugar is only 15 calories a teaspoon and makes food taste great, and sweet foods can easily be consumed as an occasional treat. American sugar consumption has declined over the last few years, with imported foods made using foreign sugar, trade agreements allowing more foreign sugar into the country, and the increasing use of high-fructose corn syrup in food production.