There are 6 high-intensity artificial sweeteners with FDA approval, but just because they are approved does not mean they are safe. A growing body of research is pointing to the dangers of artificial sweeteners due to their alarming effects on the body and what has been termed their addictive nature due to the way they alter brain chemistry.
Why they can be so dangerous
Artificial sweeteners have been linked to a range of serious conditions, including:
- Type 2 diabetes
- Elevated blood sugar
- Increased appetite
- Greater food cravings
- Binge eating
- Weight gain
- Alzheimer’s Disease
- Heart disease
- Digestive disorders
Type 2 diabetes
Saccharin was the first artificial sweetener ever to come to market in the US. It drew interest as being perfect for people with Type 2 diabetes because they have to be careful about regulating their blood sugar.
However, a growing body of research has shown that while saccharin does not have any calories, it does still have a significant impact on blood sugar levels. Those who use a lot of products with Sweet’n’Low in them seem more prone to insulin issues, diabetes and weight gain. They also seem to want more and more sweetener the more they have of it, leading to increase appetite and unhealthy binge eating.
Brain chemistry changes
Aspartame is everywhere these days, with the brand name and symbol NutraSweet appearing on more and more pre-packaged foods. However, studies have shown that it can be one of the most dangerous substances a person can consume due to the way it is processed in the body.
When it is broken down and digested, it turns into formaldehyde, that is, embalming fluid that is used to preserve dead bodies, and formic acid, a highly inflammatory venom found in certain insects such as fire ants.
Aspartame has been linked to:
- Ringing in the ears
- Anxiety attacks
- Memory loss
Its main ingredients interfere with the craving and reward centers of the brain, to the point where the drive to get something sweet, a reward, gets greater and greater. Some have compared the drive for sweets as an addiction similar to that of those who use heroin or cocaine.
There are many safe, natural alternatives to sugar. If you have been struggling with eating or mood disorders, or your weight, it might be time to axe artificial sweeteners from your diet and see what a difference it can make.