Artificial Sweeteners Raise Your Blood Sugar

Carbohydrates are not as bad as you think, if you are responsible. Artificial sweeteners raise your blood sugar levels and corrupt digestive processes. Research studies cite evidence “that the gastrointestinal tract and the pancreas are capable of detecting sweet foods and drinks and respond by releasing hormones, such as insulin, and add other alien microorganisms to digestion.

Carbohydrates may be better for you than artificial sweeteners like Equal, NutraSweet, and Splenda. Possibly natural sweeteners may also do more harm than good. These sweet subs may alter your digestive system, interfere with immune system, and raise triglycerides (part of your heart bloods serum panel) toward a diabetic diagnosis.

According to scientific research at Israel’s Weizmann Institute of Science, artificial sweeteners may induce artificial diabetes type-2 symptoms from those that habitually use them. While high weight might be a factor, the intent to reduce carbohydrates through artificial sweeteners in food and beverages touted as “sugar-free” or “diet” or “0 calories” may make you sicker.

The US Food and Drug Administration approves artificial sweeteners. As food additives, six high-intensity artificial sweeteners are FDA-approved as food additives in the United States: saccharin, aspartame, acesulfame potassium (Ace-K), sucralose, and less popular neotame, and advantame.

Stevia is considered a natural leaf and is not an artificial sweetener. It is natural and added to juice beverages such as Tropicana 50. As of May 2016, the FDA has not approved Stevia as an additive. Among some concerns noted by the FDA include possible effects including the control of blood sugar and effects on the reproductive, cardiovascular, and renal systems.

Marketing may be blamed for this. Products once touted Nutrasweet (aspartame) and Splenda (sucralose) under cooperated branding arrangements. Then there is a less common additive artificial sweetener that shows up in many products. Acesulfame potassium is a calorie-free sweetener that has been used in foods and beverages around the world for 15 years. The ingredient, which is 200 times sweeter than sugar, has been used in numerous foods in the United States since 1988. All these are artificial sweeteners, now often masked in ingredient lists of our foods.

Chemically, all these artificial sweeteners begin with carbon, hydrogen, and oxygen. These 3 element components create carbohydrates as sugars:

Carbohydrates (also called saccharides) are molecular compounds made from just three elements: carbon, hydrogen and oxygen. Monosaccharides (e.g. glucose) and disaccharides (e.g. sucrose) are relatively small molecules. They are often called sugars. Carbohydrates are natural energy sources, compounds found in fruits, vegetables, and legumes.

Artificial sweetener, Sucralose is somewhat similar to a carbohydrate molecule but it adds chlorine to the formula as C12H19Cl3O8. The addition of chlorine no longer classifies Sucralose as a carbohydrate under food nutrition panels.

Nutrasweet, another artificial sweetener is the chemical Aspartame, also begins as a carbohydrate type molecule but adds Nitrogen to create C14H18N2O5 that also can not be classed as a carbohydrate.

Aspartame’s three components are phenylalanine (50 percent), aspartic acid (40 percent), and methanol (10 percent). When aspartame is exposed to heat or prolonged storage, it breaks down into metabolites. One of these breakdown products is Diketopiperazine (DKP), a toxic metabolite that is not usually found in our diet. The effects of these different metabolites are unknown.

Ever popular artificial sweetener, acesulfame potassium, really messes with the original carbohydrate molecule by inserting both nitrogen and potassium, along with Sulphur, into the formula C4H4KNO4S. Added to “flavored waters” and some “naturally flavored sodas”, this artificial sweetener is touted as 200-times more sweet than carbohydrates.

Sucralose is made with chlorine. Nutrasweet uses Nitrogen. Sulfame potassium uses Nitrogen, Potassiun and Sulphur. These molecules, unlike carbohydrates, do not naturally occur or balance as part of your natural digestive processes.

In a New York Times editorial review, the authors cited that early animal experiments of 20 years ago reported dangers of artificial sweeteners over carbohydrates. Recent studies that, indeed, too much dietary carbohydrates seem to result in higher diabetes incidents in a population. New York Times article seems to give artificial sweeteners a sweeter outlook.

The Mayo Clinic also places artificial sweeteners on a positive level:

“One of the most appealing aspects of artificial sweeteners is that they are non-nutritive — they have virtually no calories. In contrast, each gram of regular table sugar contains 4 calories. A teaspoon of sugar is about 4 grams.”

What they seem to ignore are the nutrition panels found om most food packaging. New FDA regulations in 2016 revised nutrition panels to offer information on added carbohydrate sugars. Nothing has been added to indicate artificial sweeteners nor their content within the food product. Artificial sweeteners are non-nutritive even though they are present.

American Diabetes Association suggests artificial sweeteners for use to suppress urges for sweetness. Per Israeli study, some artificial sweeteners may actually elevate blood sugar levels.

Fundamentally, the attempt to control calories and satisfy a sweet tooth seems simple with artificial sweeteners but chronic dependence and use result in some some very nasty side effects. As far as body weight loss is concerned, there is virtually contradictory evidence that artificial sweeteners help weight loss over time.

Carbohydrates are natural and simple. They have been part of our main food groups for thousands of years. Our bodies thrive on them for energy. The Recommended Dietary Allowance (RDA) for minimum carbohydrate intake, as set by the Institute of Medicine’s Food and Nutrition Board, is 130 grams per day. 200 grams is satisfactory if you are marginally active and up to 500 grams per day if you are very active. Problem is that many people eat 500 grams or more carbohydrates each day. The excess carbohydrate calories metabolize into fat.

When you mix carbohydrates with fats from healthy oils or from unhealthy sources, you are layering it on. Even excesses of lean proteins metabolize into fat when unused by you and your body.

Using natural carbohydrates requires work and daily responsibility.

There are also different carbohydrates – simplex and complex – including fiber, starches, and sugars that provide energy:

Simple carbohydrates are sugars. All simple carbohydrates are made of just one or two sugar molecules. They are the quickest source of energy, as they are very rapidly digested.
Some food sources of simple carbohydrates:
Table sugar
Brown sugar
Corn syrup
Honey
Maple syrup
Molasses
Jams, jellies
Fruit drinks
Soft drinks
Sweetened coffee beverages
Processed breads, rolls, bagels
Donuts
Danishes
Cake
Candy

Complex carbohydrates may be referred to as dietary starch and are made of sugar molecules strung together like a necklace or branched like a coil. As these are complex, they metabolize slower, providing longer, more steady energy. They are often rich in fiber, thus satisfying and health promoting. Complex carbohydrates are commonly found in whole plant foods and, therefore, are also often contain sources of phytonutrients, vitamins and minerals. These whole plant foods are great sources of complex carbohydrates:

Green vegetables
Whole grains and foods made from them, such as oatmeal, pasta, and whole-grain breads
Starchy vegetables such as potatoes, sweet potatoes, corn, and pumpkin
Beans, lentils, and peas
Nuts (carbs and fats)

American Diabetes Association suggests that 25-30 grams of daily intake should be fiber. Fiber is subtracted from sugar carbohydrates to calculate net carbohydrates. To calculate net carbs, first subtract all of the insoluble fiber (if listed) from the total carbs and total fiber. If more than 5 grams of total fiber remain, you can also subtract half of the remaining fiber from total carbs.

Managing a carbohydrate diet requires sticking to servings and serving sizes. There are carbohydrate calculators that help you maintain stable weights, according to activity. Use also helps you plan slow, gradual, weight loss.

Because carbohydrates are nutritive, they are associated with dietary calories. Calories come from two energy sources: carbohydrates and fats. It takes about a 3200 calorie loss to lose 1-pound of weight.

Our history has consisted of nutrients from carbohydrate, fats, and proteins. They tasted good to us. With reduced activities, especially at night, managing the foods we eat help us stay healthy. For example, nuts and meats have fats but no carbohydrates and dietary servings of these may help manage weight.

Artificial sweeteners help take most of our food choice possibilities away. They are complicated compounds that might develop strange body reactions, Artificial sweeteners are marketed short-cuts leading to believe that we are reducing calories and carbohydrates. We really aren’t. They are not countable.

Healthy weight management is a responsibility. Habits help make people fat and weight loss require habits that are difficult to adapt. Carbs and fats are addictive. A concerted effort is necessary.

Proper food management from natural energy sources – carbohydrates in the morning and proteins at night – (as needed) are what the body mechanisms require. They require small servings – generally a handful.

There are nutritional supplements, particularly chromium and cinnamon that help interfere with carbohydrate metabolism. They are called carb blockers. These supplements may be available with or without prescription.They are called Amylase Inhibitors. Their role is to prevent starches from being absorbed by the body. When amylase is blocked, those carbs pass through the body undigested, so you don’t absorb the calories.

The research on efficacy of these is limited. I view carb blockers as cheating, unless you are edging towards Diabetes 2 or pre-diabetes. People do need calories and carbohydrates. Is it a route to help manage carbohydrate intake? I don’t know.

Artificial sweeteners are totally un-natural means and can potentially be harmful.

Healthy weight and energy management, without artificial sweeteners or radical short-term gimmicks, often requires visits with a registered or certified nutritionist to help personalize your needs and goals. Many may accept your health insurance coverage.

There are few short-cuts that offer long-term benefits. Use of artificial sweeteners is not one of them. For information about using carbohydrate blockers, speak with a nutritionist.

No sugar added not what you think

Got a sweet tooth? Sugars often get a bad reputation for being the instigator behind obesity, diabetes, cavities, and an entire set of conditions and sicknesses. There are often other reasons. Sugars are part of an essential family of nutrients that your body needs. They are called carbohydrates and consist of several types of sugars (simple carbohydrates), starches (complex carbohydrates), and fiber. Simple carbohydrates are those easily absorbed by the body for quick energy. Starches are absorbed at slower rates for more consistent, longer energy.Fiber is key to helping digestion; it helps the body move food through the digestive tract, reduces serum cholesterol, and contributes to disease protection. People are addicted to carbohydrates. Are processed food with no sugar added a healthy choice when avoiding excess consumption of carbohydrates?

Walk through the supermarket aisles an note how many foods have the words No Sugar Added. It’s a common marketing deception. It doesn’t mean that no sweetener was added. Those sweeteners are not listed as carbohydrates on most nutrition panels but they are listed ingredients. The two most popular are Aspartame and Sucralose. These can be more harmful than sugar.

Sugar is good for you but too much sugar has been negatively associated with mood swings, tooth decay, diabetes, and weight management.

Carbohydrates are found in grains (rice, wheat, etc.), fruits, vegetables, and legumes (lentils, peas, chickpeas, beans, soybeans and peanuts). Legumes add amounts of vegetable proteins and fats that are necessary nutrients to maintain your body’s muscles, cells, and other structural needs. None of these foods have cholesterol. Living on a vegan (all the above) diet will provide the necessary nutrients to energize and provide vitamins and phytonutrients.

Unprocessed foods that are rich in phytonutrients help provide support against diseases or conditions. There are over 1,000 phytonutrients in the various foods that are in a vegan diet.

As part of the standard nutritional panel, sugar is a carbohydrate, an essential ingredient your body needs for functioning. A carbohydrate consists 3 ways – sugars, starches, and fibers. There two more common sugars – sucrose (the powdered stuff you add to coffee and recipes) and fructose (derived from fruits and vegetables). Both help make the glucose that are essential for living. Foods with no sugar added sound healthy but they may also result in harming your body’s natural processing to create glucose. Your brain requires glucose for all those things you think about and do.

Simple carbohydrates include sugars found naturally in foods such as fruits, vegetables, milk, and milk products. They also include sugars added during food processing and refining. Complex carbohydrates include whole grain breads and cereals, starchy vegetables and legumes. Many of the complex carbohydrates are good sources of fiber. A combination of these are necessary as fuel for proper body function. High quantities are considered toxic so no added sugar appears to make sense. Does this make no sugar added foods make sense?

Carbohydrates are very necessary and dietary recommendations (RDA) are specified by the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) as outlined on nutritional panels of packaged foods. For a 150 pound individual, mostly sedentary, at middle age there are average RDA noted. The standard recommendation for carbohydrate is 45-65% of total calories. This means if 1800 calories are eaten each day, the recommended amount of carbohydrate is 202-292 grams based on 45-65% calories from carbohydrate. They are associated with calorie needs.

Calories are energy units that foods provide – some come from fat, protein, and carbohydrates. Eating calories is necessary for performing any activity, including autonomic activities within your body. Your gender, weight, age, and height factor into your minimum calorie requirement. If you are active, you require more calories. If you are sedentary, you need fewer calories. Wise consumption of calories is closely associated with weight maintenance, gain, or loss.

Calorie deprivation can kill you. Over long periods, calorie restriction can result in stress on your body’s required internal functions. Anyone trying to play with rapid or extreme weight loss by using calorie restriction, MUST do so with (and under advisement) of a qualified physician.

Added sugars to most processed foods escalate calories to meet applied marketing tastes. Making processed products that have no sugar added or sugar-free by substituting sugar and calories may be more harmful to your health.

No sugar added doesn’t necessarily translate to fewer carbohydrates. Many canned fruit juices and deserts claim that no sugar is added to the product and there’s 100% juice. Fruits have natural carbohydrate content. In a bottle of Cranberry Juice Cocktail, you will find other juices like Apple and Grape that have higher “natural” sugars that thrust carbohydrates per serving up, while the canned juice can claim that no sugar was added.

There are also natural sweeteners. One that is found in many “No Sugar Added” products is Stevia. Stevia is from a plant and has the approval from the USA Food and Drug Administration for use as a sweetener. Stevia contributes no calories and no carbohydrates, according to the way measurements are taken. If Stevia contributes no calories and adds sweetness from nature, why is it not as popular as sugar?

Stevia rebaudiana, is reportedly up to 250 times sweeter than sugar and contains virtually no calories but people don’t necessarily embrace Stevia as well as sugar.

Stevia has a bitter after taste that don’t correspond well with many sweet sensory receptors on your tongue. Cells, organs, and the brain thrive on certain amounts of glucose. Stevia may not provide that, although it contributes perceived natural sweetness in dietary research studies. While people suffering with sugar associated diabetes and obesity symptoms.

Splenda or sucralose is a popular non-caloric sweetener added to many foods. Sucralose is designed to sound like the most common form of sugar, sucrose. Sucralose is a synthetic method of playing with sucrose. Sucrose is a naturally occurring sugar, a caloric carbohydrate. Sucralose, on the other hand, is an artificial sweetener, produced in a lab. A technical combines 3 sucrose molecules by adding chlorine to make trichlorosucrose, so the chemical structures of the two sweeteners are related, but not identical. The addition of Chlorine removes sucralose from the family of carbohydrates and caloric values. While it offers sweetness to the taste, some feel it has a sour aftertaste. That’s the chlorine – a toxic chemical used to whiten washed clothes or clean your swimming pool. Sucralose was patented and tested, first approved for use as a non-nutritive sweetener in Canada. It is marketed as Splenda.

Another popular sweetener is Aspartame and is marketed as NutraSweet and Equal. Aspartame is a common sweetener additive to sodas, fruit drinks, and other products. It is an artificial substance that claims to be as much as 200-times sweeter than sucrose. Aspartame, available since the 1960’s, is not a carbohydrate and does not add calories. Aspartame is made by joining together the amino acids aspartic acid and phenylalanine. Amino acids are the building blocks of proteins and are found naturally in many foods.

Every so often there is a research study that claims Aspartame consumption may be involved in the formation of cancer but many tests use small samples or inappropriate dosing of animals. The United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has set recommendations for Aspartame. The FDA has set the ADI (Average Daily Intake) for aspartame at 50 milligrams per approximately 2 pounds of body weight. That means if you weigh 150 pounds, the FDA allows 0.5 grams of consumption. Unfortunately, there are virtually no products that list Aspartame content per serving on any packaging.

For dieters, however, Aspartame is a no sugar added winner. Grape Juice has about 150 calories per serving and 40 grams of carbohydrates. Aspartame Diet Grape Juice has about 5 calories per serving and 5 to 15 grams of carbohydrates, depending how much juice is actually in the drink. Soda, the most popular beverage, There are about 90 calories per 8-ounce serving of Coca Cola and 25 grams of carbohydrates. Aspartame-laced Coca Cola Zero (aimed at dieters) delivers 0 calories and 0 carbohydrates. There is no sugar added to Coke Zero but is it diet-friendly?

The problem is soda should not be drunk by the liters. It is not water. The lack of carbohydrates and necessary sugar your body needs will keep initiate hunger. The potential to snack and eat poorly may result in weight gain, a study suggests.

No sugar added partners with Sugar-Free through the use of sugar alcohols that are found in chewing gum, chocolates, cookies, and cakes. Sugar alcohols commonly found in foods are sorbitol, mannitol, xylitol, isomalt, and hydrogenated starch hydrolysates (found in sugar-free protein bars and supplements). You might find sugar alcohols in fruits and berries, but those naturally occurring sugars are sent to the lab.. The carbohydrate in these plant products is altered through a chemical process. These sugar substitutes provide somewhat fewer calories than adding table sugar (sucrose).

No sugar added is a short-cut to dieting and may help diabetics control blood sugar levels. Dieters seeking lower carbohydrate solutions calculate actual Net Carbs by subtracting fiber grams from Total Carbohydrates. This formula is used in the Atkin’s Diet or as ketosis – but these diets shun carbohydrates.

Your body and you love carbohydrates. Carbohydrate-based calories deliver energy in most parts of the globe. The nutrition panels of processed or packaged foods list amounts of carbohydrates per serving. Choosing the right foods will provide the calories you need for your activity.

Common sense dictates that (to provide adequate energy throughout the day through carbohydrate calorie consumption) eat breakfast like a king (queen), lunch like a prince (princess), and dinner like a pauper. Following these guidelines may help you achieve a healthy weight without compromising energy.

In the USA, we have been programmed to eat more at dinner than breakfast. Breakfast is your most important meal. Hectic commuting schedules incite judgment errors avoiding the day’s requirements without a full tank of valued calories. Your energy often is as important as what you wear. Alas, United States reserves big meals for dinner. Ever consider doing away with Thanksgiving dinner and doing a Thanksgiving breakfast?

No sugar added is not what you think. Products with no sugar added don’t taste the same and aren’t necessarily absorbed as well. If you are aiming at weight loss, diet and activity are the age-old truths. It’s not a quick-fix process. You can eat and have your cake too (just a bite instead of a slice). Adapting to your optimum calorie consumption through a vegan diet, using a good calorie calculator can help you reach your goals. Eating well, keeping healthy and attractive are your responsibilities. There are no short cuts. Avoid processed foods with No Sugar Added.