Sugar Free Can Be Bad for Your Health

When we want to lose weight, we often try to reduce our intake of sugars. This is a sound approach and justified. Sugar is high in calories and low in nutritional value. This change is not particularly difficult to make, because artificial sweeteners can give us the taste we desire without the calories. But are these sweeteners safe for our health? Well you are going to have to make that decision for yourself but here are some facts to check out.

According to multiple studies conducted over the past twenty years, the answer is a resounding “no.” The artificial sweetener aspartame (also known as NutraSweet) have been linked to headaches, blindness, seizures, memory loss, depression, high blood pressure, metabolic disorders, and even cancer. In a study entitled “First Experimental Demonstration of the Multipotential Carcinogenic Effects of Aspartame Administered in the Feed to Sprague-Dawley Rats,” it was found that “aspartame is a multipotential carcinogenic agent, even at a dose… much less than the current acceptable daily intake.”

Other artificial sweeteners also pose serious health concerns. Saccharin (Sweet ‘N Low) was once on the Food and Drug Administration’s list of carcinogens. It has been removed, even though it was directly linked to bladder cancer in male rats. Ace-K (Sweet One) contains the known carcinogen methylene chloride, which can cause kidney and liver problems, nausea, depression and headaches.

Sucralose (Splenda) is believed by many to be safe because it is derived from sugar. But did you know that this artificial sweetener was accidentally discovered by scientists trying to develop a new pesticide? The method used to extract sucralose produces chlorocarbons, which are known to cause liver and kidney swelling and inflammation. It is known by the FDA to contain up to two percent impurities, including substances such as methanol, arsenic and heavy metals.

Stevia is all the rage because it is derived from a plant instead of processing sugar. At this time there is no real side effect that you need to worry about with it. Just always talk to your diet as there have been some concerns with it lowering BP and sugar numbers so if you are on medication just bring it up. I’m only adding this sweetener in because it’s used so much. However, I don’t consider it an artificial sweetner, it’s a sugar alternative.

Why Are We Using Artificial Sweeteners?

With all of the health problems associated with artificial sweeteners, it’s hard to believe that they are approved by the FDA. But they are. The FDA has repeatedly dismissed the findings of the numerous studies that proclaim the dangers of these sweeteners, citing such reasons as lack of testing on humans and improper laboratory techniques. It has embraced, on the other hand, the results of studies sponsored by the artificial sweetener industry, which say the products do not cause health problems. This is why it’s very important to see who is funding a study before considering their findings.

Some blame the approval of artificial sweeteners on conflicts of interest. Others say that FDA approval of unsafe products is common practice. Either way, the findings of the studies on artificial sweeteners consistently show that they are not safe.

Since there are no indications that artificial sweeteners and the products that contain them will be pulled from the shelves, it’s up to us to avoid them. So instead of using these potentially dangerous products, try eating naturally sweet foods such as fresh fruit, and try using honey as a sweetener. When cooking use a combo of sugar and stevia in your recipes. It could save your life.

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