Are All Artificial Sweeteners Bad for You?

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artificial sweeteners
artificial sweeteners

 

As loads of people these days are jumping on the bandwagon of diets or on the unhappier side being diagnosed with diabetes, artificial sweeteners, or sugar substitutes are gaining in popularity.

The main reason for this is because they don’t contain any calories, which gives people a greater choice of sweetened foods. Without worrying about the effects that eating a lot of sugar would have on them.

Here are a few artificial sweeteners for you to look at:

Stevia

This is currently looked at as probably the safest artificial alternative to normal sugar and is derived from the leaves of a stevia plant.

At the moment this is not FDA approved in the U.S, therefore it is advertised as a dietary supplement instead of a normal sweetener. But for about the last thirty years Japan has been using Stevia as a sweetener.

There are a couple of little negatives of using stevia, it doesn’t caramelise like normal sugar, and therefore it is not used a lot in baking.

It can also taste many times sweeter than normal sugar and so a lot of people sometimes get carried away and use too much of it. On the plus side, it can also come in a liquid form which a many people prefer.

Sugar Alcohols

This is the second safest artificial sweetener, as long as you don’t go mad and have too much of it.

They usually go by the names of xylitol, erythritol and sorbitol and are made from fermenting corn or sugar cane.

One big problem with real sugar is that it causes cavities; a bonus with sugar alcohols is that they have been found to reduce cavities and leave your mouth with a refreshing taste.

Xylitol is toxic to dogs so make sure u keep fido well away from them.

There have also been previous reports of people that have ingested too much of these sugar alcohols and ended up with gastrointestinal distress.

Splenda®

Some people have been known to find this artificial sweetener a little controversial as it is made by combining a mixture of saccharin with maltodextrin and chlorine.

Although this combination may sound a little bit strange to you, the FDA have not found any health issues with this.

On occasions your food may taste a little different if you use Splenda for baking so you are better to use half sugar half Splenda to keep the same great taste for your cakes!

Although, that may defeat the object, if you are using it to cut out your sugar consumption altogether.

An Artificial Sweetener You May Want to Avoid

Aspartame is a substance that you will find in quite a number of low calorie foods and drinks and whilst this might contain fewer calories than normal sugar, there have been reports of people getting headaches and other symptoms after eating foods with this in.

Once it is broken down in your body, one of its by-products is formaldehyde.

Formaldehyde is known to cause gradual damage to the nervous system,
the immune system.

If you are trying to cut back on having real sugar or trying to stick to a healthier diet, Splenda, Stevia and sugar alcohols are the three that you should try to go for.

 

Sources:

https://www.fda.gov/ohrms/dockets/dailys/03/Jan03/012203/02P-0317_emc-000196.txt

 

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