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Dr K K Aggarwal

Artificial sweeteners

By Dr K K Aggarwal
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Artificial sweeteners like acesulfame, aspartame, saccharin, sucralose give the sweetness of sugar with virtually none of the calories. Most people who use artificial sweeteners or choose foods or beverages made with them do so because they want to lose weight. And for a lot of people, they do help. But some research suggests that the use of artificial sweeteners may actually promote weight gain.

Artificial sweeteners are hundreds to thousands of times sweeter than table sugar. People who use these sweeteners often may desensitize themselves to sweetness. If that happens, they may find healthful but not–so–sweet foods such as fruits and vegetables unappetizing by comparison.

Calories removed from the diet by swapping sugar for sweeteners may re–enter in the form of refined carbohydrates (like those found in crackers, chips, pastries, and the like) and unhealthy saturated and trans fats.

Artificial Sweeteners in Sweets May Be Harmful

By Dr K K Aggarwal
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The American Heart Association and the American Diabetes Association have issued a joint scientific statement giving a cautious recommendation to the use of nonnutritive sweeteners to help people maintain a healthy body weight and for diabetics to aid glucose control.

These products should be considered like a nicotine patch. They are appreciably better than the real product (sugar), but not part of an optimal diet.

The statement, published in both Circulation and Diabetes Care on July 9, 2012, warns that sweeteners are helpful only as long as people don’t eat additional calories later as compensation.

The term nonnutritive sweeteners cover six sweeteners including aspartame, acesulfame K,neotame, saccharin, sucralose, and plant–derived stevia. These nonnutritive substances have zero calories.

Two thinks may happen in terms of compensation

1.Physiological, where the body might be expecting more calories and so the individual may be hungrier and therefore may eat more

2.Psychological, where the individual thinks they are allowed to eat more sugar-rich food because they had a diet soda instead of a full–sugar soda.

When real people use sweeteners there is compensation. The key is how much? Partial compensation, is ok but people often completely compensate or even overcompensate, so these sweeteners have to be used smartly to be successful.
Compensation seems less of a problem when these sweeteners are consumed in beverages as opposed to food.

People don’t really notice the lack of calories in a diet soda and so don’t tend to eat more, whereas if they consume a low–calorie foodstuff, they do tend to eat more as compensation.

Its better when sweeteners are used in beverages and not sweets or other foods.
One is not completely sure about the safety of these products, because their long–term use in humans has not been studied fully.

However, the artificial sweeteners on the market are almost certainly safer than consuming large amounts of sugar, which has definite harm when consumed in large amounts.

This harm, particularly when consumed in beverage form such as soda, includes increases in risks of obesity, diabetes, cardiovascular disease, and gout.

A concern, though, is that just replacing sugar with artificial sweeteners leaves a person, especially children, conditioned to high levels of sweetness, which is likely to influence their food choices adversely.

Can Food Cause Diarrhea

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Certain foods can contribute to loose stools.

1.     Cured or smoked meats

2.     Alcohol

3.      Spicy foods

4.     Caffeine

5.      Fatty and greasy foods

6.     Sweeteners (sorbitol, xylitol, mannitol)

7.      Dairy products

8.     Fructose