Are the stigmas true or just another nutrition and wellness myth?
The Truth About Artificial Sweeteners
By Darell Hagerman
According to Singlecare.com about 40% of American adults over 20 are obese, and 71% of American adults are considered overweight. This is a startling percentage that shines a light on the truth that is American wellness and nutrition. One thing that could bring these percentages down, and have been proven to bring these numbers down is the substitution of sugar with artificial sweeteners. Artificial sweeteners are an excellent substitute for calorie and sugar dense foods and drinks.
Artificial sweeteners are a mix of chemicals that are up to 200 times sweeter than natural cane sugar. This is what makes artificial sweeteners have the ability to be calorie free. Very little is needed to emulate the likes of sugar. According to Frontiersin.com there are four different sweeteners that are approved by the FDA and are widely accepted worldwide. These include cyclamate, aspartame, acesulfame salt, and neohesperidin dihydrochalcone. All functioning in the same way, making something both sweet and calorie free. PubMade Databases released a study in January 2020 that showed dramatic weight loss when calorie dense soda beverages were replaced with a diet, no calorie beverages for just three months. Ryan Smith a personal trainer and Director at the Kent County Family YMCA says, “It all comes down to calories in calories out when it comes to weight loss or gain. Of course artificial sweeteners will aid weight loss, it allows the user to burn more calories than they intake in a day.”
There always has been a huge stigma surrounding artificial sweeteners, constantly being attacked because of the fact that they are not natural. Even Ryan Smith, a frequent user of artificial sweeteners believed that they were bad for him in general. These thoughts and stigma largely stem from a study that was published in the early 1970s that showed a link between artificial sweeteners and bladder cancer in laboratory rats. But according to the National Cancer Institute there is no sound scientific evidence that links artificial sweeteners that are approved in the US to any form of cancer or health concern. The NCI also discredits the rat study
because of a lack of notes and tracking statistics. Also humans and rats do not share similar gut microbiota. The NCI highlighted the health benefits of artificial sweeteners as an excellent way to control body weight and avoid diabetes.
The purpose of this article is to change the script and stigma that surrounds the topic of artificial sweeteners. Anyone struggling with their weight or struggling with a battle against diabetes should not look at artificial sweeteners or diet products as evil, but instead they should be viewed as a tool. This is why the stigma and negative press is so harmful when it comes to anything wellness related or nutrition related. It pushes people away from something that could help them improve for the better and become the person that they want to be. It is clear that the people making these claims simply heard it from someone and just believed it was true. The call to action is simply to do your own research on topics, and use the information that is fact to come to a balanced conclusion.