by Rose Cole
Have you ever ordered an iced tea, and then stared blankly at those little colored packets on the table, not knowing which one to choose?
You know that some of the choices are unhealthy, but which ones? And why are they unhealthy?
You hear that some of them cause cancer, but doesn’t everything cause cancer these days? I mean are they really that bad for you? And are any of them better for you than the rest?
And the real question weighing on all of our minds… which sweeteners will make me fatter real sugar or artificial sugar?
Well here’s the real kicker! Are you sitting down? Artificial sweeteners are not a diet aid, in fact, they can make you gain MORE weight.
According to researchers, the number of Americans who consume artificial sweeteners has grown* from less than 70 million people in 1987 to over a whopping 160 million in 2000. So why aren’t American’s getting thinner? We’re actually getting more overweight and obese by the day. “The American Cancer Society (1986) documented the fact that persons using artificial sweeteners gain more weight than those who avoid them” (Roberts 150)
So how can these man-made sugars sabotage weight-lose efforts?
Many researchers now believe that aspartame may actually stimulate appetite and cause more cravings for carbs and sugar. Normally, when we eat an antiquate amount of carbohydrates, or sugar, serotonin levels in the brain rise. This alerts us that we’ve had enough to eat. When you eat aspartame and carbohydrates together, like having a diet pop and a sandwich, the aspartame stops the production of serotonin, and that feeling of having had enough never quite happens
Artificial sweeteners have also been shown to block the conversion of the brain chemicals phenylalanine to tyrosine in your brain . So you’re probably asking yourself “what does that mean to me?”
“Why is it important to have tyrosine?” Oh, little things like brain function, suppressing your appetite, fat lose, thyroid health, to fight fatigue, stress reduction, alleviating depression and anxiety, headaches… need I say more?
Here’s another reason artificial sweeteners may not be a good weight loss tool…
According to Health psychologist Daniel C. Stettner, PhD, when manufacturers lower the sugar content in foods, they very often will increase the salt or the fat content to compensate for any change in how it tastes or feels in the mouth. To give you an example, sugar-free ice creams can be made higher in fat.
Another reason you may want to avoid using artificial sweeteners you could be having a reaction to artificial sweeteners that you may not even know is related. Studies have found that there are a whole slew of adverse reactions from artificial sweeteners- like headaches, trouble remembering, depression, nervousness, irritability, nausea, insomnia just to name a few.
If you stop using artificial sweeteners, like aspartame, and adverse reactions that you were experiencing go away, maybe even symptoms that you didn’t realize were connected to them, it’s important to spread the word and tell others. You can make a big difference in your friends and family’s health. You may also want to write a letter to the alert the FDA so that they can pile it up with the thousands of other letters they’ve receive of adverse reactions to aspartame.
So why are artificial sweeteners legal if they’re so bad for us? We have to be smart consumers and take initiative for our own health. Apparently the government isn’t going to do it for us.
Ok, so now that we’ve ruled out those little pink and blue packets of artificial sweeteners, then how about white table sugar?
I have some more bad news for you sugar and carbs make you fat. This country went through the whole cut-out-fat diet, and they got fatter than ever! When we cut out the fat, we started eating more carbs, and it didn’t work.
According to experts, sugar addiction is very similar to an addiction to heroin or morphine. We all know someone, and maybe it’s you, who acts almost like a crack addict when it some to sugar like a junky looking for their next fix. If you think you’re not addicted to sugar, I have a little challenge for you I want you to try to go a week without eating sugar or baked goods and bread.
Most people cave in the first day! I’d definitely call that an addiction. This is where all of our rationalizations kick in. It’s amazing what we can convince ourselves of.
I have something else to tell you right now that may shock you. Many health experts now believe that sugar is the fuel for cancer cells. How is this? Cancer thrives in environments with little or no oxygen. That’s why cancer loves refined sugar – not being easy to digest, sugar ferments in the body. With alcohol, it’s already fermented when we drink it. Fermentation occurs in an anaerobic environment – no oxygen.
Now you may be in for a big surprise if you’re using those little yellow packets Splenda (the brand name for sucralose). Ah the marketing brilliance of Splenda. Splenda is not natural. It’s a sugar molecule that has been synthetically altered in a laboratory by adding chlorine to it. Our bodies don’t poses the metabolic machinery to break this down because it’s a chlorinated compound.
Everyone reacts differently to chemicals, and some of you may be more sensitive to the reactions of these fake sugars than others, but there have been just as many reactions reported to sucralose as the other artificial sugars.
They didn’t know what the health risks of smoking were until it was too late for many people. With these new artificial sweeteners, we don’t know what the long term effects are yet. Better to be safe than sorry, and with so many great tasting alternatives, it seems like a no-brainer.
Let’s make one thing clear that a lot of people are confused about. Carbs and sugar are the same thing. Your body breaks down carbs (carbohydrates) into sugar, so all of these low carb diets are just low sugar diets.
So how about regular old white table sugar? This is a highly processed food that has almost nothing good nutritionally about it. It causes weight gain, it can lead to diabetes, it causes tooth decay and cavities, they use synthetic chemicals to process it, and the finished product contains none of the nutrients, minerals or vitamins of the original plant.
Hidden sources of sugar that could be feeding your addiction: you know right away anything that ends with an “ose”, means sugar. The food industry tries to sneak in sugar wherever it can under different names. Here are some of the aliases that sugar goes under:
– Cane juice (organic cane juice)
– Evaporated cane juice
– Corn syrup
– Corn sugar
– Cane syrup
– Raw cane sugar
– Raw sugar
– Brown sugar
– High fructose corn syrup
Start reading your food labels, and you’ll probably be appalled like I was by all of the places they sneak it in.
So you’re probably thinking “…what the heck do I do now? …sugars or artificial sweeteners are in everything!”.
Don’t panic! The trick is to cut them out wherever you can, and this doesn’t mean you’re never going to be able to eat anything sweet again.
Here are some tricks for cutting out the dangerous sweeteners, and replacing them with healthy sweeteners.
Ketchup is loaded with sugar. I looked on the back of my organic peanut butter the other day, and found that they had snuck in some “organic cane juice”.
Sodas-14 of those little white packets of sugar per can! If you’re giving soda to your children- beware. It’s like giving a child rocket fuel, and then telling them to sit still!
Limit baked goods, processed foods, and corn syrup.
What the heck does raw sugar mean anyway? Well it means that is hasn’t been totally processed and striped of all of its nutrients. Raw sugar still has it’s chromium in it, which causes sugar to ferment and to be brown in color, ironically it also helps your body handle sugar, so it’s a slightly better alternative to the white packs of sugar.
THERE’S A LIGHT AT THE END OF THE TUNNEL!
What if I told you there was an ALL NATURAL sweetener that was:
– 200 to 300 times sweeter than regular white table sugar
– Had NO calories
– Safe for children
– Suitable for diabetics
– Doesn’t cause cavities
– Is widely available in supermarkets and health food stores across the country
– Heat stable, so you could cook and bake with it
– Has liquid and powder forms- mixes well in cold beverages
– A great alternative to man-made sweeteners
– Already used in many countries all around the world
Well this amazing no-calorie sweetener is called Stevia, and is just beginning to get noticed in the United States? It’s been used in Japan for nearly two decades.
So here’s the sweetener packet breakdown…
Pink Packets: NutraSweet- artificial, chemical based, linked to cancer, not safe for children
Blue packets: Equal- artificial, chemical based, linked to cancer, not safe for children
Yellow packets: Splenda- artificial, chlorine added to sugar molecules, many reported side effects
White packets: refined sugar- processed, causes weight gain, causes tooth decay
Brown packets: raw sugar- some minerals and nutritional value left, better choice than white sugar
Green packets: Stevia- all natural, no calories, safe for children, safe for diabetics
Are you starting to see a trend here? The more we humans go in and try to improve on nature, mess around with the molecules, and process things so they’ll have a longer shelve life, the worse it is for you. Food in its most natural form is the best for you, and actually helps to fight cancer many times, unlike many artificial foods which have been shown to cause cancer.
It’s all about choices. You don’t have to turn into one of those paranoid health nuts…
Have a happy healthy day!
To learn more about how Rose can help you feel better fast, and eat healthier without depriving yourself of “comfort” and eating what tastes good – visit rose