Artificial sweeteners are used in many diet foods and beverages to enhance sweetness while reducing calorie content and are the popular choice for those that are attempting to lose weight.
Common types of artificial sweeteners include aspartame, sucralose, saccharin and acesulfame potassium. There have been studies that show that artificial sweeteners can aid in weight loss and help manage blood sugar levels, however the side effects are negative in nature. One study found that people who consumed a supplement containing artificial sweeteners for 10 weeks had a lower intake of calories and gained less body fat and weight than those consuming regular sugar. (US National Library of Medicine-National Institutes of Health).
Another study showed that consuming sucralose for three months had no effect on blood sugar control in 128 people with diabetes. (US National Library of Medicine-National Institutes of Health).
Aspartame: John Olney, M.D. and James Turner, released their findings regarding the toxic effects of aspartame. They found that aspartame could cause brain damage and was dangerous for people with PKU (Phenenlyketonuria), a genetic disease that causes people to be unable to break down phenylalanine.
Sucralose: One 2013 study, however, found that sucralose may alter glucose and insulin levels and may not be a “biologically inert compound.” “Sucralose is almost certainly safer than aspartame,” says Michael F. Jacobson, executive director at the Center for Science in the Public Interest, a Washington, D.C.-based think tank.
Saccharin: Banned in 1981, saccharin has long been considered carcinogenic because it produced bladder tumors in rats. … Saccharin, being 300 times sweeter than sugar, is used in many foods and drinks, and compared with carbohydrate-rich, high-calorie sweetened foods, it ensures sustained organoleptic taste with minimal calories. Still, artificial sweeteners are generally considered safe for most people when consumed in moderation.
Acesulfame Potassium: Contains the carcinogen methylene chloride. Long-term exposure to methylene chloride can cause headaches, depression, nausea, mental confusion, liver effects, kidney effects, visual disturbances, and cancer in humans.
Review: Artificial sweeteners may help promote weight loss and blood sugar control; however the question is at what health cost. Certain types may cause mild side effects like headaches, others can cause serious major illnesses…do you want to chance ingesting these products?
Trans fats are a type of unsaturated fat that have undergone hydrogenation, which increases shelf life and improves the consistency of products. Trans fats can be found in many types of processed foods like baked goods, margarine, microwave popcorn and biscuits.
A number of potential serious health risks, such as heart disease, have been associated with trans-fat intake, and the FDA even recently decided to revoke their GRAS (generally recognized as safe) status. (US National Library of Medicine-National Institutes of Health).
One study found that eating foods high in trans fats increased several markers of inflammation, which is one of the major risk factors for heart disease and other serious illnesses. (US National Library of Medicine-National Institutes of Health).
Research also shows there may be a connection between trans fats and diabetes.
A large study with 84,941 women even showed that a high intake of trans fat was associated with a 40% higher risk of developing type 2 diabetes. (US National Library of Medicine-National Institutes of Health).
Cutting all processed foods out of your diet is the easiest and most effective way to decrease your trans-fat intake, promote good health and possibly avoid major medical conditions.
Review: Eating trans fats has been associated with many negative effects on health, including inflammation, heart disease and diabetes. Stay healthy, stay away from trans-fats.
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