Sugar has become Public Enemy Number One in the world of nutrition, leading many consumers to eager select artificial sweeteners in their effort to avoid real sugar. While cutting back on added sugar intake is a worthwhile goal, artificial sweeteners may not be a better alternative! The truth is, artificial sweeteners have dangers lurking beneath the surface, including links to weight gain, diabetes, heart disease, and a number of other health risks.
The Worst of the Worst
Artificial sweeteners are tempting because they don’t contain any calories, but still provide powerful sweetness. However, this is a dangerous combination. These non-nutritive sweeteners provide no sense of fullness or satisfaction, yet they simultaneously retrain the taste buds to require more and more sweetness. As a result, people end up eating and drinking too much, becoming addicted to sweet treats, and gaining weight.
There are many artificial sweeteners currently on the market, and many of them are even added to seemingly healthier food options like yogurt, vitamins, and breakfast cereal. The worst of the worst culprits include aspartame (found in Equal and NutraSweet), sucralose (found in Splenda), and Saccharin (found in Sweet ‘N Low). Many people who cut artificial sugars out of their diets report the improvement of many health problems including migraines, depression, IBS, weight gain, and more.
Better Sweetener Options
While it’s true that eating too much added sugar isn’t good for your health, there are many natural sweeteners and flavors that can enhance food without the need for artificial additives. Raw honey, stevia, vanilla, and cinnamon are all excellent choices. Try to get creative with whole food recipes in order to discover the potential of naturally flavored food and retrain your taste buds to enjoy natural sweeteners in small quantities.
For additional help modifying your diet, detoxifying your body, and making changes to achieve better health, call Kavita Rao, M.D., your trusted doctor of internal medicine in the St. Petersburg area. Dr. Rao will provide all of the support and knowledge you need to prevent chronic disease and improve your well-being. Call (727) 525-0900 to make your first appointment today.