How Safe Are Artificial Sweeteners?Dr. Nitin Gupte
The Controversy Over The safety Of Artificial Sweeteners
When you are looking to evaluate the safety of artificial sweeteners like saccharine, aspartame and sucralose, you must understand that there will always be an anti-artificial-sweetener lobby and a pro-artificial-sweetener lobby.
Both sides will be making forceful arguments regarding the grave dangers posed to public health by these artificial sweeteners or the complete safety of these products.
The anti-artificial-sweetener lobby has accused the artificial sweeteners of causing illnesses ranging from lowered immunity to multiple sclerosis, systemic lupus to cancers.
The pro-artificial-sweetener lobby as well as the research results ordered by the US Government claim that the artificial sweeteners are safe.
To an outside observer, it could be a battle between cash rich vested interests and the true story could be amongst the best kept trade secrets of the world. It may never be told to you or me.
The real question is not whether we should use sugar or artificial sweeteners, it is whether we should be eating sweets at all!
Most of the sweets that you consume as deserts in fancy restaurants or buy from a sweets shop or home made sweets are also loaded with fats, comprising mostly of saturated fats and also trans fats. The principal components of Indian sweets are milk, cream, butter, ghee, vanaspati ghee (hydrogenated fats) and dry fruits. The western desserts may have refined flours, eggs, milk, cream and butter. Plus of course sugar or the artificial sweeteners will be there.
Thus you would consume ample bad fats hidden in sweets irrespective of what sweetener is used in it.
Simply all this bad fat in sweets will make you overweight and lead to hypertension, dyslipidemia (abnormal levels of blood fats and cholesterol), diabetes and heart disease, irrespective of which sweeteners are used in them, natural or artificial!
So while sugar may give you overweight, diabetes and heart disease, the artificial sweeteners, for all we know, may give us all the above diseases plus diseases as fatal as cancers, of which nobody is telling us the exact truth.
The question is, do we really need to find the truth, the hard way, ourselves?
The saner option is to consume sweets, deserts and cold drinks minimally.
And believe me, it can be done far more easily than you think.
Most people think that they just can’t do without sweets, that they have uncontrollable cravings for sweets, which they can never conquer. So they replace sugar with artificial sweeteners, and thus buy obesity, diabetes, heart disease as well as, perhaps, cancers!
As we have seen in the Latest Post ‘How Much Salt Do I Need?’, we are masters of our taste buds, not the other way round.
Like in case of salt, we have to just get determined to stop eating sweets for a few weeks. Once you just shut out the desire to eat sweets altogether for those few weeks, the craving will automatically go away.
The best option is to stop buying all kinds sweets and sweet drinks and sweeteners. If you have no stock at home or the work place, you can’t reach out to them! And if you can’t reach out to them, you won’t consume them!
Within weeks, you will find that you don’t even remember to reach out to them, far less stop and buy them!
Try this technique honestly, and I am sure, you will have no need to buy much sugar and no artificial sweeteners at all!
Read the article ‘How Much Salt Do I Need?‘ for more information.