Artificial Sweeteners

In my Corporate Wellness Let’s Learn Labels, The Healthier Office, and Food Rules presentations, I stress that the additives found in our foods are allowed to be in there and have been tested for safety.  However, each additive is normally tested by itself, rather than with a number of other additives or chemicals, which is how they are usually found in foods.

If you are in fairly good health, your liver can process these additives and move ‘em on out of your body.  However, if you are stressed, run down, and your health is precarious, the additives will be moved to your fat cells – your liver thinks they are “safe” there.

If you consume foods and beverages containing artificial sweeteners, be sure to know what you are consuming!  Some things to think about:

  • All chemical sweeteners have been discovered in a laboratory by chemists.  Is this where you want your food to be grown – in a petri dish?

  • Sugar substitutes are classified as excitotoxins.  Excitotoxins overstimulate neurons in the brain, leading to degeneration and depletion of these important nerve cells. This prevents the nervous system from communicating with other body systems, which can lead to disorders like Parkinson’s, Alzheimer’s and Multiple Sclerosis.

  • Artificial sweeteners have been shown to cause:
    • brain imbalances
    • migraine headaches
    • mood disturbances
    • insomnia
    • seizures
  • These fake sweeteners reduce healthy levels of naturally-occurring gut bacteria by 50 percent in average consumers of sucralose.  Healthy gut bacteria help digestion and promotes good bowel movements. Much of our immune system is found in this gut bacteria.

  • Artificial sweeteners have been studied back and forth as possible carcinogens.  Do you want to take a chance?

Types

Aspartame (Equal® and NutraSweet®) - blue packets

Aspartame is found in thousands of food and drink products, and especially in diet sodas.  It is also often found in sugarless gums and “light” yogurts.

Sucralose (Splenda®) - yellow packets

Sucralose is found in more than 4,500 food products, including candy and beverages.  Sucralose is 600 times sweeter than sugar.

Saccharin (Sweet ‘N Low®) - pink packets

Saccharin is the old-timer of the group.  It’s been on and off the market.

Two Healthy Sweeteners

Stevia - an herb that is calorie-free and does not spike insulin or blood sugar levels.  Stevia is much sweeter than sugar.  Its consistency allows for use in baking.  Be careful when buying stevia, however.  Some beverage companies are marketing stevia, but the product also contains other sugars as well.

Xylitol - a sugar alcohol that is calorie-free and doesn’t spike blood sugar. Xylitol is extracted from fruit and vegetable fiber and is considered a carbohydrate, but one the body cannot digest.  It is excreted in urine.  Most health experts recommend limiting the amount of xylitol used, as it can cause gas and bloating when too much is eaten.

If you want sweetness in your food and drink, think about using real sugar, or try honey.  Full Circle Vitality Group sells a delicious Fiber Sweetener you can use in drinks and baking.  Or…. try to wean yourself from the sweet beverages.  You’ll feel better and your body will be SO happy!  Give us a call if you’d like help!

To Your Vitality!

Reference:  Cruise, Jorge.  Happy Hormones Slim Belly ™