Are Artificial Sweeteners Safe?
With more and more studies proving that diets high in refined sugar (sucrose) can be more dangerous then high cholesterol diets, many people are looking for alternatives. This has led to many artificial sweeteners being released to consumers promising to be sweeter than regular table sugar as well as zero calories. So are these artificial sweeteners safe for your health?
As we said before, artificial sweeteners have many fewer calories then sucrose and because many of them are chemically made, they are much sweeter then sugar and so require less to sweeten foods. Artificial sweeteners are popular among diabetics because they can raise the sweetness of foods without raising blood sugar levels.
Aspartame (NutraSweet), Saccharin, Acesulfame K and Sucralose (Splenda) are all approved by the FDA and even though there have been many reports of artificial sweeteners causing cancer and other health problems, the National Cancer Institute so far has found no scientific evidence to suggest so.
Aspartame however does carry a caution and is not recommended for people who have phenylketonuria (PKU). All products containing aspartame must carry the PKU warning on their label.
Even though there is no major scientific that links artificial sweeteners to cancer or other diseases, it doesn’t refute the fact that these sweeteners are empty calories and should be consumed sparingly if used at all. These empty calories can still cause damage to the body.
So while the research is still coming in, its safe to say that if you do use artificial sweeteners, use it sparingly and make sure to balance it with plenty of whole grains, fruits and vegetables.