Are Artificial Sweeteners Safe?
The average american consumes a staggering amount of sugar substitutes each year. You put them in your coffee, drink them in your diet soda, and you use them to cut your calories. Sugar substitutes are hidden in your favorite package foods.
So are they safe? Rumors are swirling that these sugar substitutes increase your risk for cancer, can make you sick and fat, and may even cause brain damage. Is this true?
People are getting concerned because these sweeteners are artificial, they are made in a lab and are so much sweeter than regular sugar.
There are three main sugar substitutes:
1. Aspartame (NutraSweet or Equal) comes in a blue packet and is 200 times sweeter than regular sugar.
2. Saccharin (Sweet ‘N Low) comes in a pink packet and is 300 times sweeter than regular sugar. This has been around the longest. It was actually formulated by a scientist in 1870s who was trying to make a preservative and discovered something sweet instead.
3. Sucralose (Splenda) comes in a yellow packet and is 600 times sweeter than sugar. It was made in 1976 and approved by FDA in 1998. It is made directly from your sugar and altered slightly so it passes through your body un-metaboilzed.
While sugar substitute advocates claim that there has been no scientific proven research to conclude that these substitutes are a risk for cancer or neurological disorders, many in the natural community shun the use of these chemical sweeteners.
And there have been many findings to make a strong case against these chemical sweeteners. 60 Minutes ran a story on aspartame and the whole story about despite thousands of complaints by consumers of aspartame, it continues to be approved by FDA in the food market.
Dr. Mercola who runs the largest natural health site wrote a book called Sweet Deception which outlines in detail all the facts and the dangers of these artificial sweeteners. You can also visit his site with articles on information about the dangers.
The biggest deception is that it can help you lose weight by avoiding sugar when studies have proven that it actually makes you gain weight by increasing your cravings.
If you are diabetic and must absolutely avoid sugars, there is good news.
Instead of the chemical sugar sweeteners, try Stevia which is a completely natural sugar substitute coming from plant grown in Paraguay. It has zero calories and you won’t have to wonder how much of adverse effect the chemical sugar substitutes are having on your long term health.
The brand name for Stevia in a packet is Truvia. Besides powder form, you can also get this natural sugar substitute as an extract or as a liquid concentrate.
Hundreds of studies have been conducted dating back to 1945 by various scientists and groups. All of them have concluded that stevia is completely safe for human consumption.
Meanwhile, you cannot say this fact about the chemical sweeteners produced in Labs.
Doesn’t it make sense that your body will recognize and process something from nature versus something created in a lab?
So if you do need to use a sugar substitute, use the more natural source with Stevia.