The study assessed the independent and combined effect of two speciality carbohydrates (polydextrose and xylitol) on appetite. Eight female and seven male lean volunteers were recruited from the University of Leeds campus. Using a repeated measures design, volunteers completed four conditions in a counterbalanced order. Each condition varied according to the yoghurt formulation administered: a control yoghurt (C, yoghurt+25 g sucrose) and three experimental yoghurts (X, yoghurt+25 g xylitol; P, yoghurt+25 g polydextrose; and XP, yoghurt+12·5 g xylitol and 12·5 g polydextrose). Each condition lasted for 10 d during which volunteers consumed 200 g yoghurt on each day. On days 1 and 10, the short- and medium-term effects of yoghurt consumption were assessed by measuring ad libitum lunch intake and subjective motivation to eat. The three experimental yoghurts (X, P and XP) induced a slight suppression of energy intake compared with the control (C) yoghurt, but the differences were not statistically significant. However, when the energy content of the yoghurt pre-loads were accounted for, there was a significant suppression of energy intake for P compared with C (P=0·002). The XP yoghurt induced a significantly stronger satiating effect (increase in subjective fullness) compared with C, both with (P=0·003) and without (P<0·001) the differential in energy content of the yoghurt pre-loads accounted for. The study demonstrated that pre-loads of xylitol and polydextrose caused a mild increase in satiety and suppression of energy intake, and that the effects persist after repeated daily administration. The effects exerted by the formulations containing xylitol and polydextrose did not arise from the differences in energy content of the yoghurt per se. Therefore, the usefulness of xylitol and polydextrose as ingredients in functional foods for appetite control are as a result of their lower energy content and suppression of appetite.