Many of you have tried the so called “diet” drinks instead of classic sugary drinks. There is no secret that people are looking to limit their daily calorie intake. To be able to respond to consumers requests and limit the calories in variety of foods including drinks, the food industry has been relying on sugar substitutes or artificial sweeteners.
Some other names for artificial sweeteners include non-caloric sweeteners, sugar substitute or non-nutritive sweeteners.
Do you belong to the group of individuals who use artificial sweeteners rather than pure classic table sugar?
Do you use the artificial sweeteners to lose or maintain your weight?
What are the artificial sweeteners? Do they cause any health problems? These are the questions that I’d like to answer in this article.
The first thing you should know is that all of the artificial sweeteners are chemically processed and only few of them being plant-based, hence, the name artificial.
Do you consider this fact as negative or positive?
The other important point is that artificial sweeteners have a higher intensity of sweetness per gram than caloric sweeteners such as sucrose, corn syrups, and fruit juice concentrates.
List of common artificial sweeteners,
According to the statistics, sucralose, acesulfame-K and aspartame are the most popular sweeteners.
What are some concerns about using artificial sweeteners?
One of the concerns about overconsumption of the above mentioned sweeteners is related to their significant sweetness.
Let me explain more, imagine you get used to high degree sweetness of these products, then it’s possible that you might find less intense sweet foods including vegetables and fruits, unpleasant.
You may have seen people who find the taste of vegetables and fruits boring and therefore, don’t consume these important food groups.
I’ve to admit that reading about artificial sweeteners could entice you to throw away table sugar and replace it with these sweeteners.
It seems like these sweeteners would be able to make it possible to satisfy our sweet tooth, and at the same time avoid the calories.
However, it isn’t as simple as it looks. Changing table sugar to artificial or non-calorie sweeteners isn’t the ultimate answer to our nutritional problems.
Artificial sweeteners, weight gain and obesity
2009 American Heart Association scientific statement about these products has concluded the following
“There is an insufficient data to determine conclusively whether the use of nonnutritive sweeteners to displace caloric sweeteners in beverages and foods reduces added sugars or carbohydrate intakes, or benefits appetite, energy balance, body weight, or cardio-metabolic risk factors.”
Other Studies shown that daily consumption of diet drinks was associated with a 36% greater risk for what I call “lazy metabolism” and a 67% increased risk for type 2 diabetes.
Clearly, limiting added pure sugar in our food is an important step in managing our health. But at the same time it’s also important to limit the consumption of artificial sweeteners. Looking at scientific data, I don’t see sufficient and powerful data that could convince me to eliminate table sugar entirely in favor of sweeteners.
What about you? Go to my google + page and let me know what you think!