|Homemade brownie cookies and berry muffins|
A recent study published in the journal Nature found that, instead of helping people lose weight, consuming artificial sweeteners - such as saccharin, sucralose and aspartame - can alter the gut microbiome which may lead to increased risk of insulin resistance - a factor influencing metabolic dysfunction, obesity, and diabetes.
Read the Washington Post article here (which was sent to me by SmartBrief for Nutritionists on Sept 18). Read the article from Nature here and an abstract of the actual study here.
In addition to the deleterious health effects, here are some other reasons why adulterated "impostor" foods are on my "Do Not Eat" list:
- When people eat foods with a health claim like "fat free" or "sugar free" (which are not calorie-free), they sometimes end up eating more of that food (and more of the calories) than they would have eaten if they had chosen the real deal. You really only need a few bites of a decadent dessert to feel satisfied.
- Many of my colleagues believe that, when artificial sweeteners are consumed, the body "interprets" the sweet flavor to mean "calories coming in" but once the body realizes that there are, in fact, no calories in these fake sugars, they body reacts with increased food cravings and consumption later.
- Food additives are chemicals which must be processed and eliminated by the body, usually via the liver. High consumption of food additives puts stress on the organs of elimination and can result in toxic build-up in the body. Signs and symptoms of a toxic body include poor elimination, poor digestion, bloated stomach, gas, low energy and fatigue, irritable skin, headaches, brain fog, poor memory, low immunity, low libido, yeast problems, and food allergies. Certainly there are many ways to support the detoxification process, but eliminating food additives (like artificial sweeteners) is a great place to start!
- diet soda
- flavored water
- chewing gum
- coffee creamer
- ice cream
- jams and jellies
- salad dressing
- pancake syrup
- meal replacement bars and powders
The only way you can be 100% sure that a product is free of artificial sweeteners is to read the Ingredients. All of the following are artificial sweeteners:
- Acesulfame potassium (Equal, Sweet One, Sunnet)
- Aspartame (NutraSweet, Equal, Twin Sugar)
- Saccharin (Sweet N Low)
- Sucraole (Spenda)
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