Sugar Substitutes: Are They Safe?

While the benefits of a no sugar diet for diabetics are constantly being touted, the fact that people tend to replace sugar with artificial sweeteners presents a troubling trend given the potential risks that are often associated with them. Research has proven that some sugar substitutes can harm your health, and this requires any responsible person to explore them further before implementing them into their diet.

If you’ve cut out sugar from your diet and have turned instead to chemicals like aspartame or other sweeteners, you owe it to yourself to know all of the facts. Here is a quick look at two of the most popular sugar substitutes and whether or not they’re safe:

1. Splenda

A sucralose-based artificial sweetener, Splenda is the most popular artificial sugar substitute in the world, owning about 65 percent of the market after nearly 25 years on the market. While its low calorie count makes it very popular among those looking for sweeteners for things like coffee, there are concerns about its safety when used by humans.

Research conducted previous to Splenda’s approval for sale in the United States showed that laboratory rats given the substance over long periods inevitably developed shrunken thymus glands, sick and enlarged livers and a variety of kidney disorders. These findings appeared to raise alarms with some people, but a lack of similar findings in human trials put most of the debate to rest.

With no long-term studies of the effects of Splenda on the human body, the truth is that no one really knows whether or not it’s safe – reason enough to stay away from it for most people.

2. Aspartame

While still widely used, Aspartame has been proven to cause poisoning in some human-based studies, most notably in women suffering from neuropsychiatric disorders. Because Aspartame is digested by the body, it can result in the accumulation of formaldehyde in the brain, presenting a huge risk of damage to the central nervous and immune systems in our bodies.

The official answer to this concern from drug and food safety agencies is that the amount of formaldehyde in aspartame is so low that most people would never suffer any problems because of it. While this answer is obviously enough for some, anyone seriously concerned about their health and longevity should avoid Aspartame, plain and simple.

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