Z-D, Splenda, Equal And Other Artificial Sweeteners

People are asking me to write more on artificial sweeteners, especially Splenda.

I have read tons of articles, both for and against, and am ready to contribute to this subject. Jon Gabriel has contributed to my findings and has a web site that may be of interest to some since his tremendous weight loss is impressive and we do congratulate him on his success!  I will put a link to his site here in case you’d like to check him out for yourself and perhaps even use his methods.  http://www.thegabrielmethod.com/ We encourage you to also check out our EAT HEALTHY! page since that is what works best for us.

What are artificial sweeteners?

Artificial sweeteners are those that are not natural from Mother Nature, but are man-made chemicals very often used instead of sugar to sweeten foods and drinks. You can add them to drinks like coffee or iced tea, and they are found in many foods sold in grocery stores. These sweeteners, also called sugar substitutes, are made from chemicals and natural substances. The bottom line is– they are not good for us! It is a proven fact that artificial anything is not real food and often has unwanted side effects. Ever wonder why, since we have natural things grown in Mother Nature to give us sweetness that is zero in calories and carbohydrates, that some companies push sweet chemicals instead? 

Sugar substitutes have very few calories compared to sugar. Some have no calories. Many people use sugar substitutes as a way to limit how much sugar they eat, whether it’s to lose weight, control blood sugar, or avoid getting cavities in their teeth.

The most common sugar substitutes are:

  • Aspartame (Equal, NutraSweet). It’s mostly used to sweeten diet soft drinks.
  • Saccharin (Sweet ‘N Low, Sugar Twin). It’s used in many diet foods and drinks.
  • Sucralose (Splenda). It’s in many diet foods and drinks.
  • Acesulfame K (Sunett). It’s often combined with saccharin in diet soft drinks.
  • Erythritol (is a sugar alcohol). It has become very popular since the Keto Diet has become so widespread and those pushing it with books, articles and foods, recommend it over the ones above because this chemical is made from pears, watermelon, grapes and even corn, therefore said to be natural. They completely ignore the fact that it’s properties were changed during processing much like that of the sugar cane, which is also the natural source of sugar

Sugar alcohols are also used to sweeten diet foods and drinks. They are not harmful in the same ways the sweeteners above are, since they are plant-based, but are still harmful since they have been processed and no longer are a natural plant, but are now considered a chemical. These products include mannitol, sorbitol, xylitol and the now popular erythritol. If you eat too much of them, sugar alcohols can cause diarrhea, bloating, and weight gain, which is not a desirable health issue for us, is it? The natural stevia plant and Monk fruit both seem to be the best way to sweeten and not gain weight or become ill. They both have zero carbs and after doing a study on them, we prefer SweetLeaf, but certainly you should try these and decide for yourself. They are excellent, natural, healthy things given us through Mother Nature and contain nutrients good for our body.

If your goal is to lose weight, keep in mind that even though a food is sugar-free, it can still be high in carbohydrates, and may include trans-fats. Some Doctors are now telling us not to count calories, but just carbs. This is because a nice big juicy steak with all its fat will not put any weight on us, but the same amount of calories in potatoes, rice and breads will. It’s a good idea to read the ingredients label to check for just what is in this sugar-free food– you could be surprised- and choose not to consume it!

Are sugar substitutes safe?

Yes and No. They don’t kill you- at least not right away, but you may start to notice unhealthy things in your body. I had a Doctor warn me about Equal (Aspartame) when I had terrible things happening within my body. He said that product was causing Alzheimer’s in people. The FDA regulates the use of artificial sweeteners and had said it was safe when used in small enough amounts. Their idea of a small amount was far less than most people who use these products consume. I expect rat poison wouldn’t kill you if you only got a very tiny amount, but I wouldn’t want to push my luck. That was when I totally stopped consuming anything with Aspartame in it and stopped trusting the FDA to tell me what’s safe. I’ve now made a decision- if God made it, I’ll eat it. If man made it, I’ll check the ingredients and probably won’t.

Want More Info On Why Splenda® Is Bad For You?

Some sources say that Splenda® (sucralose) contains chlorine, which is a proven carcinogen. Others say that it contains as much chlorine as common table salt. That is up for debate, but before sucralose was formally approved, research showed that it caused shrunken thymus glands (up to 40% shrinkage) and enlarged liver and kidneys. Do you want to risk that?

Research conducted since then documents numbness of male rat’s hind legs, as well as negative effects on the livers, spleens and kidneys of laboratory animals.

Additional research has shown that artificial sweeteners may actually stimulate appetite. That’s a real blow to anyone trying to lose weight by using these sugar substitutes!

User Reports of the Danger of Splenda®

According to Dr. Joseph Mercola, many of his patients have noticed the following symptoms within 24-hours of eating Splenda® products:

o Skin — Redness, itching, swelling, blistering, weeping, crusting, rash, eruptions, or hives (itchy bumps or welts). This is the most common allergic symptom that people have.
o Lungs — Wheezing, tightness, cough, or shortness of breath.
o Head — Swelling of the face, eyelids, lips, tongue, or throat; headaches and migraines (severe headaches).
o Nose — Stuffy nose, runny nose (clear, thin discharge), sneezing.
o Eyes — Red (bloodshot), itchy, swollen, or watery.
o Stomach — Bloating, gas, pain, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, or bloody diarrhea.
o Heart — Palpitations or fluttering.
o Joints — Joint pains or aches.
o Neurological — Anxiety, dizziness, spaced-out sensation, depression.

Even though Dr. Mercola has many pages of testimonials from his readers who feel that there are dangers to using Splenda®, and that they have been harmed by this sweetener, he has also received reports from many readers saying they have used it for years and feel no ill effects.

While Splenda® may be safer than Aspartame (NutraSweet®, Equal®)– which is linked to leukemia and lymphoma, there still has not been enough convincing evidence to prove Splenda®’s safety.

You must decide for yourself if you want to ingest this substance. There is a natural alternative to artificial sweeteners that Dr. Mercola prefers and uses. We recommend it too, and that is Stevia.

Are You A Concerned Diabetic?  Is Stevia, Monk Fruit, Sorbitol and Erythritol The Right Answer For You?

Other countries and diabetics have both taught us a lot about controlling insulin naturally. For many years, diabetics have used products sweetened with polyalcohol sugars like sorbitol, xylitol, maltitol, mannitol and erythritol. These are chemical sweeteners made from natural plants that do not trigger an insulin reaction. (Xylitol can be derived from birch tree pulp.) They have half the calories of sugar and are not digested by the small intestine.

While most polyalcohol sugars have no side effects for many, sorbitol is a natural laxative and can cause diarrhea, irritable bowel syndrome, bloating and flatulence. Also these can cause headaches and other undesirable things in our body.

Stevia (some SweetLeaf, but ingredients must be read), and Monk fruit are from herbal plants, so since God made them, we can safely eat them! After doing a ‘study’ of our own, we find we prefer SweetLeaf for our sugar bowl since the cost is less, but it really doesn’t matter to us which of these are in the healthy things we buy. You can find them at most grocery outlets, or go to Amazon, where you will discover several packaging options and great prices! Having shared this, do be careful and read labels. Some companies are adding things to there otherwise healthy products in order to sell more and fatten their bottom line.



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