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Health risks indicate need to avoid both sugary drinks and artificially sweetened drinks

With Sabyasachi Sen, MD, FRCP, FACP, FACE, and Christopher Gardner, PhD

That piece of chocolate cake is awfully tempting, but a little voice says, “not worth the sugar and calories.” But as you’re trying to walk away, a louder voice says, “go ahead. You had an aspartame-sweetened yogurt for breakfast and a diet soda with lunch so you’re ahead of the game.”

That kind of thinking is just one reason some experts are discouraging use of artificial sweeteners and sugar substitutes, especially if you have diabetes or noticed the weight creeping up. And the chorus is getting louder as the science points to reasons why you should think twice and then walk away from artificially sweetened foods.

For decades, we’ve relied on artificial sweeteners to deliver the taste without the calories or glucose rush, but it seems it’s time to reconsider.

Researchers who presented new data at ENDO 2018, the 100th annual meeting of the Endocrine Society,1 in Chicago, say artificial sweeteners can promote ”metabolic dysregulation. ” If it sounds awful that because it is. Translations: just as sugar creates problems, so it seems do artificial sweeteners by messing up your body’s normal response to glucose and insulin, complicate rather than help weight loss efforts, and make you more prone to prediabetes and diabetes, especially if you are currently overweight.

Fat Cells Treat Sucralose Just Like Sugar

In the study, led by Sabyasachi Sen, MD, associate professor of medicine at George Washington University School of Medicine and Health Sciences, in Washington, DC, the researchers first looked at human fat-derived stem cells in the lab, adding the sugar subsitute, sucralose, to some cell samples but not to others.1 (Sucralose, sold as Splenda and store brands, is in packets and used in numerous food products.) “We wanted to see if adding sucralose contributed to the process of making fat,” Dr. Sen tells EndocrineWeb.

Stem cells can change into mature fat, muscle, cartilage, or bone cells. After about 12 days, ”we could actually see the sucralose-added dish had more fat accumulation compared to the ones that did not get it,” Dr. Sen says.

Why did the cells accumulate fat? In the lab samples, Dr. Sen explains that the sucralose seemed to change the expression of a gene known as the glucose transporter gene. The glucose transporter gene helps sugar or in this case, sugar substitutes enter cells better.1 However, he says, when too much gets into the cells, it gets stored as fat.

Not what you’d expect. They found with the stem cell research that the low-cal sweeteners promoted additional fat accumulation within the cells, compared to cells not exposed to these sweeteners. And, the higher the concentration of sweeteners introduced to the cells, the more fat that was accumulated.1 “The cells perceive [sugar substitutes] as glucose,” he says.

Next, Dr. Sen’s team looked at human fat samples, collected from people who were normal weight and other who had obesity and used low-cal sweeteners. They found similar genetic changes occurring in the patients who were overweight.1 The increased gene expression was found when the sucralose in the samples reached a level similar to what would be found in the blood of people who drank four cans of diet soda a day, he says. However, Dr. Sen says, ”the difference in gene expression was statistically significant only in obese individuals, not in those who were at a healthy weight.”

Artificial Sweeteners: No Better for Those with Thyroid Disease

Besides promoting fat accumulation, artificial sweeteners have been linked with the kind of hypothyroidism known as Hashimoto’s thyroiditis, an autoimmune condition.2

In a study presented at the International Thyroid Congress in 2015,2 researchers reported a link between artificial sweetener use and Hashimoto’s disease. The research team looked at 100 patients with Hashimoto’s thyroiditis and another 125 people with a healthy thyroid, and they found a strong link between use of sugar substitutes and a link to this thyroid condition. They note that sugar substitutes also have been linked with autoimmune problems in animals.

Best Not to Rely on Sugar Substitutes for a Sweet Fix

The evolving research on sucralose and fat accumulation offer an important warning, especially for those who are struggling with undesirable weight gain, says Christopher Gardner, PhD, professor of medicine at Stanford University and director of nutrition studies at the Stanford Prevention Research Center. The researchers found a plausible mechanism to explain a compelling downside to using artificial sweeteners, he tells EndocrineWeb.

Dr. Gardner chaired the 2012 scientific statement from the American Heart Association and American Diabetes Association scientific statement on nonnutritive sweeteners,3 as sugar substitutes are called. The expert panel concluded that data was insufficient to decide conclusively whether using them to displace caloric sweeteners in drinks and food works to reduce overall added sugars and carbohydrates or yields other benefits such as appetite, weight or metabolic risk factors. Some experts say the professional panel recommendation is due for an update. 

Dr. Gardner has researched and published extensively on artificial sweeteners. In a 2014 review, he weighed the risks and benefits of sugar substitutes.4 He noted that short-term studies suggest that the popular artificial sweeteners when taking the place of sugar, may reduce a person’s overall calories, but the benefits were very modest—and sometimes there was no benefit at all. “Compensatory eating behaviors such as when a person justifying having that slice of cake because she drank a diet soda earlier likely diminishes, and in some cases negates, potential [beneficial] effects,” he wrote. Longer-term studies are needed, he says.

What’s In the Glass Matters a Lot  

The health impact of sugar is even grimmer, at least when you drink it. In a study of 18,000 people across the United States who participated in the Reasons for Geographic and Racial Differences in Stroke (REGARDS) study,5 those who consumed the most beverages containing sugar—including soda (soft drinks), punch, fruit-flavored drinks, and fruit juices—had the greatest risk of dying from heart disease and other causes.

These individuals were followed for nearly seven years. and the findings held after the authors controlled for smoking, age, body weight, alcohol use, income, region of the country, and level of physical activity. The rate of death was highest, nearly double, that of people who consumed the least amount of sugar-laden drinks.5

What to do? It will take time to adjust so transition slowly and think creatively.

“Try to find beverages that satisfy your thirst and deliver in flavor but without the sugar or sugar substitutes,”  says Jodi Godfrey, MS, RD, a registered dietitian in New Jersey, “Lemon, lime and fruit-flavored iced teas offer another good option.” For those who like soft drinks, flavor seltzer with lemon, lime, or a splash of your preferred juice. “An ounce of cranberry or orange juice will provide a hint of the taste you are looking for so let a little go a long way,” she says.

FIll a pitcher with water, drop in 3-4 slices of fresh lemon, and leave it in the refrigerator. Since sugary drinks account for 47% of all added sugar in our diet, skip the liquid sugar, choosing instead a refreshing option that quenches your thirst so you are no longer pouring health risks into your glass.

To Satisfy a Sweet Tooth—Now What?!

“These products [with artificial sweeteners] are geared to those who are obese,” Dr. Sen says, worse “It’s giving them false hope.” The message that comes with these product is, if you eat these sugar substitutes you won’t put on weight.

“That’s unfortunately just not true,” Dr. Sen says, given the findings from his research.1 Yet, he is not saying to turn to sugar either, but rather to be aware of the downsides of both ”real” sugar and its artificial substitutes.

“Try eating more whole foods,” Dr. Gardner says. “I’ve never seen a food with an artificial sweetener that is not a junk food,” he says. Fresh fruit delivers plenty of sweetness. Frozen berries that can be thawed and added still warm to oatmeal or yogurt for a very comforting meal.

How to give up the sugar substitute habit? Gradually, Dr. Gardner says. Think transition, not ”cold turkey.” For instance, if you love yogurt sweetened with sucralose, gradually replace your yogurt with vanilla and added fruit, or looking for low sugar brands. Give it a couple of months, he says, to change your habit and retrain your palate.

8 Ways to Enjoy Sweets Without Added Sugar or Sugar Alternatives

  • Add a splash of unsweetened vanilla-flavored almond milk to your coffee
  • Grate some carrots into your tomato sauce or bake some moist carrot muffins
  • Slice some roasted beets into your salad or bake into a chocolaty “red velvet” cake.
  • Add a splash of fresh orange juice to your homemade salad dressing, or your French toast batter.
  • Stir some pineapple chunks into your stir-fry or top your chicken or fish with sliced pineapple or orange before baking.
  • Defrost frozen berries and add, still warm, to a bowl of oatmeal or mix into plain yogurt, and sprinkle with diced walnuts.
  • Top your burger—beef, turkey, salmon, veggie—with caramelized onions.
  • Dates, not terribly appealing to most of us on their own, have great qualities for replacing cane sugar in your favorite baked recipes; try brownies, peanut butter pie, or no-bake cheesecake.
  • Prepare your pancake batter with some unsweetened applesauce or grated apple.

As a last resort, Stevia, plant-based alternative sweetener, offers a very concentrated sugar like flavor when none of the options above work for you; just go sparingly and use only occasionally. The more you rely on intense added sweeteners, the more you may crave them and nothing else.

Dr. Sen and Dr. Gardner have no financial disclosures. 

Updated on: 06/08/20

Blood Sugar Basics: Get to Your Goals Program Highlighted

The truth about artificial sweeteners – Are they good for diabetics?

Indian Heart J. 2018 Jan-Feb; 70(1): 197–199.

Department of Cardiology, AIIMS, India

Copyright © 2018 Published by Elsevier B. V. on behalf of Cardiological Society of India.

This is an open access article under the CC BY-NC-ND license (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/4.0/).

This article has been cited by other articles in PMC.

Abstract

Artificial sweeteners are thought to be beneficial for diabetics or obese where refined sugar can be a problem. These low-calorie sweeteners are seemingly safe to use, provide sweetness without calories, and provide a choice of sweet foods to those who otherwise cannot partake them (refined sugars). However, while artificial sweeteners may indeed restrict calories most of them have no beneficial effects on control of diabetes mellitus; rather possibly increase its risk. Additionally, there could be some other safety concerns possibly risk of cancer.

Keywords: Artificial sweeteners, Diabetes mellitus, Caloric restriction

1. Background

Artificial sweeteners a.k.a. non-nutrient sweeteners (NNS) came in vogue during the World War I & II when due to agricultural crisis sugar production was falling. During this time Saccharin was accepted very well as low cost alternative to sugar. Fahlberg accidentally discovered the sweet properties of saccharin which made his dinner bread very sweet when he forgot to wash hands after a long day in lab.1 Since then several artificial sweeteners have been discovered and produced: Aspartame, Neotame & sucralose are a few of them. These substances can be found in more than 6000 food products across the globe. Some newer products such as sucralose and plant product stevia are more metabolically neutral.

2. Community use of artificial sweeteners

In recent past there has been a rising pandemic of obesity in all population and ethnic groups and due to aggressive marketing campaigns within food industry, role of these artificial sweeteners has evolved from sugar substitutes to health substitutes. Due to extreme sweetness of these products minimal amount is required to provide sweetening without added calories (of sugar). Thus these substances are being marketed to the masses as healthy alternative to sugar especially for diabetic population (e. g. sucralose as sugar free), and as an alternative to sugar sweetener in beverages such as Diet coke (main consumer being healthy young). Although these claims appear promising, they have never been confirmed in any vigorously conducted trial or large epidemiological study. On the other hand, only a well planned, prospective, epidemiological study, with a frequent and long duration follow up can answer these questions; health hazard & adverse effect, if any, of these substances. Another major limitation of studies evaluating the impact of these substances is, unregulated use of these substances among masses in some developing countries, so that many food substances inadvertently have these agents already added on and it may become difficult to discriminate which processed day-to-day food stuffs have them and which do not. Indeed, Tripathi and co-workers, in a study conducted in Lucknow, revealed that even in children of age group 6-10 year, consumption of artificial sweeteners exceeded Accepted Daily Intake (ADI) by 54% (due to consumption of ice candies & crushed ice). 2 Habitual pan masala users also consume above average (above ADI) artificial sweeteners. Finally, overall poor health care infrastructure and reporting of disease related data in developing world, makes it a formidable task to find out long term impact of these unique compounds and elucidate development of various disease entities (as a result of usage of these compounds) despite several safety concerns about them which are raised from time to time.

3. Safety issues

Recent safety concerns about them came from a large epidemiological study as well as small physiological studies in human.3, 4 In a physiological studies of artificial sweetener both aspartame and sucralose were associated with significant postprandial hyperglycemia in comparison to Stevia. Postprandial insulin level was also high with artificial sweeteners suggesting that artificial sweetener may be associated with metabolic abnormalities.5 Physiological evidence included consumption in the form of in diet soda/soft drinks. In a large meta-analysis of prospective studies (17 cohorts with 38 253 cases) it has been shown that artificial sweeteners were associated with risk of type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM), and may not be as healthy alternative to sugar sweetened beverages as projected. Even though publication bias cannot be ruled out for artificial sweeteners, a recently published E3N EPIC Cohort study was unique in that it collected 10 year data among more than 10 000 women among consumer of NNS as packet & tablets.6 This study actually demonstrated an association between NNS usage and risk of diabetes. More importantly they were also able to show a gradation of risk depending upon year of consumption & amount consumed per day. Another explanation given for a probable association between artificial sweeteners and T2DM in observation studies is reverse causation bias because of increase intake of artificial sweeteners among obese.7 However in this study even after excluding cases of incident T2DM during first 5 year of follow up there was a positive association between artificial sweeteners and T2DM suggestive of no significant reverse causation effect in the study. Strength of the study was that reverse causation was not found to be a confounder and risk of T2DM was independent of traditional diabetic risk factors. However in a large study, Dekoning and co-workers, who prospectively analyzed more than 40 000 participants, reported that in white men, sugar sweetened beverages were significantly associated with T2DM (OR 1.15 P < .01) although artificial sweeteners per se may not (OR 1.05 P < .12).8 Nevertheless the possible risk of diabetes cannot be ignored as these substances are being marketed extensively as an alternative to sugar especially among diabetic population. In a double blind, randomized controlled trial 477 healthy school going children received sugar containing beverage with sucrose or beverage with artificial sweeteners containing sucralose & aspartame combination. At 18 month of follow-up artificial sweeteners were significantly associated with reduced weight gain as compared to sucrose.9 They concluded that decreased sugar consumption may lead to decrease in insulin level and satiety, leading to less weight gain. Whether caloric restriction by decreasing sugar beverages and substituting it with artificial sweetener can lead to reduced obesity & T2DM is still controversial because of the possibility of compensatory appetite and increased overall food intake. Thus although artificial sweetener may be used as a method of dietary modification to reduce add on sugar consumption; however weight gain and glycemic control is still linked to total energy consumption. Latest ACC/AHA guidelines also recommend a word of caution with the use of artificial sweetener as a means of calorie restriction.10

Another important safety concern with artificial sweeteners is the risk of carcinoma which was first demonstrated by various animal studies. Cyclamate was the first artificial sweetener to be banned due to risk of carcinoma. Weihrauch and colleagues reviewed the literature meticulously and opined that there was no significant evidence of artificial sweetener consumption and cancer risk with currently available artificial sweeteners. 11 Similar conclusions were also drawn by Lim and co-workers who prospectively analysed data from more than 400 000 men & women over a period of 5 years and did not find any association between aspartame consumption & risk of hematopoetic or brain tumours.12 One prospective analysis has linked artificial sweetener aspartame consumption with risk of lymphoma & leukaemia only in men.13 However, this study was limited by inability to quantify exact consumption of aspartame because of variable presence of aspartame among the dietary sources. Another limitation of this study was the inability to explain the rational behind male preponderance of carcinoma risk (, ).

Table 1

Artificial sweeteners commercially available.

Sweeteners ×Sweeter than sugar Metabolism Brand name Acceptable daily intake (ADI) Possible side-effects
Saccharin 300 Nil, bitter metallic after taste Sweet ‘N low 5 Bladder cancer
Aspartame 200 Metabolized to:
Phenylaanine
Aspartic acid
Methanol
Equal/NutraSweet 50 Chronic fatigue, brain tumor
Acesulfame 200 Nil Sweet one 15 Carcinogenic
Neotame 8000 By esterase New tame 18 Neurotoxic, immunotoxic and excitotoxic
Sucralose 600 Nil Splenda 5 Possible DNA damage, may affect insulin sensitivity
Stevia 150 Steviol glycosides are poorly absorbed in GI tract; small amounts absorbed are metabolized in liver Truvia/PureVia 4

Table 2

Artificial sweetners in common food products.

Common foodstuff Constituent artificial sweeteners
Sugarless cookie Acesulfame K & sucralose
Diet Coke/Coca Cola zero Aspartame & acesulfame K
Coca Cola Life Cane sugar + stevia
Diet Pepsi Aspartame/sucralose
Chocolate syrup Acesulfame K & sucralose
Sugarfree traditional Indian sweet (Halwa/Khoya Barfi/Rasgolla) Aspartame & acesulfame K & sucralose
Chewing gum Aspartame & acesulfame K
Pan masala Saccharin
Sweet supari Cyclamate-saccharin mixture
Ice candies and crushed ice Saccharin

4. Difficulty in conducting prospective trials

Since their discovery more than hundred year ago artificial sweetener are now identified as a constituent of more than 6000 food products of mass consumption alone or in combination with other agents because of bitter after taste of some of them (e.g. saccharin). These factors make it very difficult to conduct a randomized controlled trial co-relating pattern of artificial sweetener consumption and various diseases. Thus, despite industry pitch, a host of outcome studies not showing favourable effect (if not downright harm) should be an important consideration limiting their use. On the other hand, despite these general assumptions, substances like sucralose and Stevia which do not get metabolized in the body seems to be safe as minimal/no intestinal absorption take place.

5. Conclusions

Artificial sweeteners have been in vogue for a long time and are now constituents of many processed foods. They have been in use for control of obesity and diabetes mellitus. While they may reduce the caloric intake, per se they may not have any beneficial effects on control of diabetes because they may themselves alter the insulin sensitivity. In addition they may have other safety concerns like cancer.

References

2. Tripathi M., Khanna S.K., Das M. Usage of saccharin in food products and its intake by the population of Lucknow, India. Food Addit Contam. 2006;23(December (12)):1265–1275. [PubMed] [Google Scholar]3. Suez J., Korem T., Zeevi D. Artificial sweeteners induce glucose intolerance by altering the gut microbiota. Nature. 2014;514:181–186. [PubMed] [Google Scholar]4. Anton S.D., Martin C.K., Han H. Effects of stevia, aspartame, and sucrose on food intake, satiety, and postprandial glucose and insulin levels. Appetite. 2010;55:37–43. [PMC free article] [PubMed] [Google Scholar]5. Imamura F., O’Connor L., Ye Z. Consumption of sugar sweetened beverages, artificially sweetened beverages, and fruit juice and incidence of type 2 diabetes: systematic review, meta-analysis, and estimation of population attributable fraction. BMJ. 2015;351:h4576. [PMC free article] [PubMed] [Google Scholar]6. Fagherazzi G., Gusto G., Affret A. Chronic consumption of artificial sweetener in packets or tablets and type 2 diabetes risk: evidence from the E3N-European Prospective Investigation into cancer and nutrition study. Ann Nutr Metab. 2017;70:51–58. [PubMed] [Google Scholar]7. Greenwood D.C., Threapleton D.E., Evans C.E. Association between sugar-sweetened and artificially sweetened soft drinks and type 2 diabetes: systematic review and dose-response meta-analysis of prospective studies. Br J Nutr. 2014;112(5) [PubMed] [Google Scholar]8. De Koning L., Malik V.S., Rimm E.B., Willett W.C., Hu F.B. Sugar-sweetened and artificially sweetened beverage consumption and risk of type 2 diabetes in men. Am J Clin Nutr. 2011;93(6):1321–1327. [PMC free article] [PubMed] [Google Scholar]9. de Ruyter J.C., Olthof M.R., Seidell J.C., Katan M.B. A trial of sugar-free or sugar-sweetene beverages and body weight in children. N Engl J Med. 2012;367:1397–1406. [PubMed] [Google Scholar]10. Gardner C., Wylie-Rosett J., Gidding S.S. Nonnutritive sweeteners: current use and health perspectives: a scientific statement from the American Heart Association and the American Diabetes Association. Circulation. 2012;126:509–519. [PubMed] [Google Scholar]11. Weihrauch M.R., Diehl V. Artificial sweeteners—do they bear a carcinogenic risk? Ann Oncol. 2004;15(October (10)):1460–1465. [PubMed] [Google Scholar]12. Lim U., Subar A.F., Mouw T. Consumption of aspartame-containing beverages and incidence of hematopoietic and brain malignancies. Cancer Epidemiol Biomark Prev. 2006;15(September (9)):1654–1659. [PubMed] [Google Scholar]13. Schernhammer E.S., Bertrand K.A., Birmann B.M. Consumption of artificial sweetener- and sugar-containing soda and risk of lymphoma and leukemia in men and women. Am J Clin Nutr. 2012;96(December (6)):1419–1428. [PMC free article] [PubMed] [Google Scholar]

Sugar Substitutes: Sucralose – Diabetes Self-Management

Last week we took a look at aspartame, a popular nonnutritive sweetener that’s been around for a long time and is found in a “little blue packet.” It’s interesting to hear and read about people’s reactions to and opinions about sweeteners. Some people won’t touch them with a 10-foot pole, while other people find them to be helpful to include in their diets. The good news, I suppose, is that there are many different types of sweeteners (caloric and non-caloric alike) to choose from. This week, we’ll look at another very popular sweetener called sucralose.

Not surprisingly, sucralose is a very different type of sweetener than aspartame. This sweetener, which is 600 times sweeter than regular sugar, is actually made from sugar. For you chemistry buffs, sucralose is made by replacing three hydrogen-oxygen groups on a sucrose molecule with three chlorine atoms. These chlorine atoms help to create a structure that is very stable.

Sucralose was discovered in 1976 and was approved for general use in 1999. Sucralose is found in over 4500 foods and beverages. Unlike aspartame, which breaks down at high temperatures, sucralose is approved for cooking and baking. It’s heat stable and it’s sold in granular form, just like sugar. Many people prefer the taste of sucralose over other sweeteners, claiming that it tastes more like sugar and without an aftertaste.

Like aspartame, sucralose has undergone extensive safety testing. Studies conducted over a 20-year period have determined that sucralose is safe for the general population, including children, and pregnant and breast-feeding women. It’s a good choice for people who have diabetes as it does not impact blood sugar levels (although keep in mind that foods containing nonnutritive sweeteners, such as yogurt and ice cream, still contain carbohydrate and will affect blood sugar levels).

The Center for Science in the Public Interest (CSPI), the consumer action group that came down on aspartame, has different thoughts about sucralose’s safety, however. For a long time, they rated sucralose as being “safe,” but after the release of an Italian study that claimed sucralose caused leukemia in mice, they’ve downgraded and placed it in the “caution” category. CSPI said they were waiting for the Italian study’s review to decide what longer-term rating to give sucralose, but this study has not yet been published.

A review published in the Journal of Toxicology and Environmental Health, Part B: Critical Reviews has raised other concerns about sucralose. One of these has to do with the effect of this sweetener’s effect on the good bacteria (probiotics) in the gut; sucralose may alter the amount and quality of these good bacteria which, in turn, may be associated with weight gain and obesity. The study’s authors also claim that sucralose may affect insulin and blood sugar levels, is linked with inflammatory bowel diseas,e and may even alter genes. Note, though, that the research reported in this review was done on rats, not humans, so it’s important not to panic. Hopefully more research will be conducted in these areas so that we can learn more about sucralose and its effects on health, if any.

What also has some people worried is the chlorine found in sucralose. Chlorine, which you probably think of as something you dump into your pool, is actually found in some of the foods we eat, including vegetables, bread, and meat. When sucralose is made, the chlorine atoms bind to carbon, producing chlorocarbons. But again, more than 100 scientific studies have been done on sucralose, many of which used extremely high doses of sucralose (far greater than one would ever consume) to ascertain its safety.

If you recall from last week, the FDA sets a safety level for all sweeteners called the Acceptable Daily Intake, or ADI. The ADI for sucralose is 5 milligrams per kilogram of body weight per day. You would need to consume 165 packets of sucralose to reach this amount.

Once again, the choice to use sucralose (or not) is up to you. If you feel worried about possible side effects, choose another sweetener or talk it over with your doctor or dietitian who can help you make the decision that’s best for you.

More on sweeteners next week!

What Is Sucralose? | Is Sucralose Healthy?

In an effort to curb sugar intake, which has been linked to obesity, type 2 diabetes, tooth decay, and metabolic syndrome, food manufacturers looked for a way to add sweetness to their products without extra calories. And thus, zero-calorie sweeteners like Splenda stormed onto the food scene and sucralose found its way onto the ingredients lists of diet sodas and lower-cal desserts alike. But having your cake, and well, eating it too, makes you wonder if the sugar-free label is too good to be true.

As usual in the field of nutrition science, there isn’t a cut-and-dried answer on whether using Splenda or other sucralose-based products can have long-term negative effects. But here’s what we do know.

What Is Sucralose?

Sucralose, often recognized its brand name, Splenda, is a chemical made in a laboratory, explains Lindsey Pfau, R.D., C.S.S.D, owner of Rise Up Nutrition. It’s a non-nutritive, zero-calorie sweetener that’s very similar to sugar. “[Chemists] adjusted some of the bonds of the sugar molecule so your body doesn’t digest or absorb it,” she says.

So yes, while sucralose technically comes from a sugar molecule, it’s not to be confused with sucrose, the chemical name for table sugar. Pfau says the brand’s slogan—Made from sugar, so it tastes like sugar—is misleading, which has caused past legal issues. (In 2005, the Center for Science in the Public Interest released a statement saying Splenda should be more truthful in its marketing, and in 2007, the makers of Equal, whose main ingredient is aspartame, sued the makers of Splenda over the slogan for the same reason.)

“It’s clever marketing,” she says. “But it does mislead consumers because it’s passed off as a natural thing, and it’s not. The sugar molecule is natural—you can find it in foods across the Earth—but once you bring it to a laboratory and start tampering with it, it’s no longer sugar. It doesn’t function in the body like sugar.”

Regular sugar—whether that’s cane, honey, maple syrup, even high-fructose corn syrup, is absorbed and digested by the body, Pfau explains. But sucralose, which is 600 times sweeter than real sugar, doesn’t provide calories or nutrients. “It has no benefits to it, as far as affecting your body in a positive way,” she says.

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So, Is Sucralose Bad for You?

Here’s where things get a little confusing. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration says sucralose is “generally recognized as safe,” or GRAS. That means that experts consider the substance in question safe based on available research.

“All artificial sugars are GRAS, and they’re on the market because the research we have so far states that if they’re consumed in amounts that are reasonable for humans, they’re safe, that they won’t cause immediate or long-term health detriments,” Pfau says.

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There is research that has found that when lab animals were given extremely high amounts of sucralose, they developed cancer. But it’s hard to replicate these studies in humans because of ethics—it could put humans at risk.

“There have been some studies of sucralose in humans, but no long-term studies that would assess whether it caused cancer or other effects over the long term,” says Lisa Lefferts, M.S.P.H, senior scientist for CSPI. “It is difficult to obtain human evidence on whether an additive causes cancer or other long-term effects. Our biggest concern with sucralose is that it causes cancer in animals, and thus may also cause cancer in humans.”

There’s also some evidence to suggest that artificially sweetened drinks may not be any healthier than sugary drinks for your heart: A 2020 research letter published in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology shows that consuming large quantities of both types of beverages are associated with higher risk of heart disease.

That said, if you’re following the mantra, “Everything in moderation,” you should be okay, both Lefferts and Pfau say.

What Is the Safest Artificial Sweetener to Use?

“When it comes to cancer-causing substances, the less you’re exposed to, the lower your risk,” Lefferts says. “There is not thought to be an amount that is without risk. However, the risk is extremely small when eating small amounts, like a packet or two [of Splenda] a day.”

When it comes to making changes to your diet to improve health, zero-calorie sweeteners can serve a purpose, Pfau says.

As we recently reported, the U.S. Dietary Guidelines recommend consuming no more than 10 percent of calories from sugar. That’s about 13 teaspoons per day. The current average is 42 teaspoons.

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Is Sucralose

Ever Recommended?

“As a dietitian, I might recommend or encourage people to use sucralose as a stepping stone or temporary solution to wean themselves off sugar if they’re consuming too much,” Pfau says.

If, for example, a person’s long-term goal is to lower his or her blood sugar levels, which are putting him at risk for diabetes, a zero-calorie sweetener like Splenda can satisfy a sweet tooth while not affecting weight or blood sugar, Pfau says, emphasizing that this would not be a long-term solution. Other sugar alternatives may do that job a little better, Lefferts adds.

“CSPI rates both erythritol [a low-calorie sugar alcohol] and stevia leaf extract as safe,” she says. “Erythritol would be my first choice in terms of safety, although if you consume huge amounts, it could cause nausea.”

CSPI marks sucralose, aspartame, and saccharin as unsafe based on the current research, but again, that research looked at animals, not humans.

The Bottom Line

The key here—as with most aspects of nutrition—is: everything in moderation, including zero-calorie, non-nutritive sweeteners like sucralose-based Splenda.

A can of diet soda or two a week likely won’t cause negative long-term health effects, but research has found that diet soda drinkers not only didn’t lose weight, but in many cases, they gained weight. It’s unclear why this may be, but experts suggest one reason could be because people eat more knowing they didn’t consume any calories through a diet drink.

Another theory is that when you taste sweetness from a zero-calorie sugar alternative, your pancreas secretes insulin to process that sugar. But because there aren’t any calories, your body becomes confused, disrupting the normal metabolic process.

Working with a dietitian is a good way to balance using sugar alternatives and consuming a healthy diet for a host of long-term health benefits.

As for runners who rely on sugar (the kind with calories!) to fuel their muscles for workouts, choosing sucralose won’t give their bodies what they need. You’re better off opting for the real thing and enjoying it in moderation or specifically on days when you need it, like a long run day.

“We know our bodies need calories,” Pfau says. “So we should put good calories in the body.”

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The truth about sweeteners – NHS

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Artificial sweeteners are low-calorie or calorie-free chemical substances used instead of sugar to sweeten foods and drinks.

They’re found in thousands of products, from drinks, desserts and ready meals, to cakes, chewing gum and toothpaste.

Sweeteners approved for use in the UK include:

  • acesulfame K
  • aspartame
  • saccharin
  • sorbitol
  • sucralose
  • stevia
  • xylitol

Both Cancer Research UK and the US National Cancer Institute have said sweeteners do not cause cancer.

“Large studies looking at people have now provided strong evidence that artificial sweeteners are safe for humans,” states Cancer Research UK.

All sweeteners in the EU undergo a rigorous safety assessment by the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) before they can be used in food and drink.

As part of the evaluation process, the EFSA sets an acceptable daily intake (ADI), which is the maximum amount considered safe to consume each day over the course of your lifetime.

You do not need to keep track of how much sweetener you consume each day, as our eating habits are factored in when specifying where sweeteners can be used.

Are sweeteners healthy?

Sweeteners may be safe, but are they healthy? Food manufacturers claim sweeteners help prevent tooth decay, control blood sugar levels and reduce our calorie intake.

EFSA has approved the health claims made about xylitol, sorbitol and sucralose, among others, in relation to oral health and controlling blood sugar levels.

Dietitian Emma Carder states: “Research into sweeteners shows they’re perfectly safe to eat or drink on a daily basis as part of a healthy diet.”

She also says they’re a really useful alternative for people with diabetes who need to watch their blood sugar levels while still enjoying their favourite foods.

“Like sugar, sweeteners provide a sweet taste, but what sets them apart is that, after consumption, they do not increase blood sugar levels,” she says.

It’s been suggested that the use of artificial sweeteners may have a stimulating effect on appetite and, therefore, may play a role in weight gain and obesity.

But research into sweeteners and appetite stimulation is inconsistent. Also, there’s little evidence from longer term studies to show that sweeteners cause weight gain.

Page last reviewed: 28 February 2019
Next review due: 28 February 2022

The Skinny on Common Sugar Substitutes

There are so many sugar substitutes available today it can be hard to keep them all straight.  Making the healthiest choice possible is especially important for the millions of people who live with diabetes.

In general, sugar substitutes sweeten food and drinks with fewer calories and carbs than table sugar. People with diabetes need to limit the carbs in their diet to keep their blood sugar (glucose) levels under control.

Here’s the real skinny on eight of today’s artificial sweeteners and how they affect your blood sugar levels and sweet tooth.

What it is: Derived from the South American stevia plant, this sugar substitute is also known as Rebaudioside A, Reb-A, or rebiana. Brand names include PureVia, Truvia and SweetLeaf Sweetener. According to the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA), Stevia is a Generally Regarded As Safe (GRAS) ingredient. This ruling does not pertain to whole-leaf stevia or [other] non Reb-A  extracts.

Where it is: Stevia can be found in drinks, desserts, gum, baked goods, candy, yogurt, and in packets for use in beverages. Stevia can also be used when baking at home.

How sweet it is: Up to 300 times sweeter than sugar

OK for diabetes? Yes. Stevia does not affect blood sugar levels.

What it is: Agave comes from the same Southwestern U.S plant that is used to make tequila. It has more calories than table sugar, 60 calories versus 30 calories respectively, which is rare for a sugar substitute. Some brand names may include Wholesome Sweeteners, Madhava, and Volcanic Nectar.

Where it is: Agave is a concentrated sugar syrup that looks and feels like honey. (Yes, it is that sticky!) It can be used to sweeten beverages and baked goods. Agave dissolves easily in cold drinks.

How sweet is: 1.5 times sweeter than table sugar

OK for diabetes? In moderation. It’s better than refined sugar, but the American Diabetes Association lists Agave as “a sweetener to limit.”

What it is:  Aspartame is produced by linking aspartic acid and phenylalanine, two amino acids (building blocks of proteins). Brand names are Equal and Nutrasweet.

Where it is: Aspartame can be found in soft drinks, yogurt and dairy, candy, fruit spreads and other foods. It is also available in packets to be added to coffee and tea according to taste.

How sweet it is: Up to 200 times sweeter than sugar

OK for diabetes? Yes. Aspartamehas no effect on blood glucose levels.

What it is: Sucralose or Splenda is a no-calorie sugar substitute.

Where it is:  Splenda is found in many processed foods, and is available as a tabletop and general purpose sweetener. Splenda can be found in small yellow packets wherever coffee and tea are served. It is considered the most heat-stable of all the sugar substitutes, which makes it ideal for your baking needs.

How sweet it is: As much as 600 times as sweet as sugar

OK for diabetes?  Maybe not, research suggests. Splenda contains about 1 gram of carbs per teaspoon, which means it could affect blood sugar if it’s not consumed in moderation.

What it is: Discovered in 1879, saccharin is an artificial sweetener. Brand names include Sweet and Low®, Sweet Twin®, Sweet’N Low®, and Necta Sweet.

Where it is: Saccharin may be found in drinks, and other food bases or mixes if it’s prepared in accordance with directions and stringent guidelines. It is also used as a sweetener for coffee and teas. 

How sweet it is: From 300 to 500 times as sweet as sugar

OK for diabetes? Yes. Saccharin has no discernable effect on blood glucose levels.

Acesulfame K (acesulfame potassium)

What it is: Acesulfame K or acesulfame potassium is an artificial sweetener. Brand names include Sunett or Sweet One.

Where it is:  This sweetener may be found alone or in combination in baked goods, candy, dairy products, soft drinks as well as some medicines. Acesulfame K can also be used as a tabletop sweetener and when baking.

How sweet it is: Up to 300 times as sweet as sugar

OK for diabetes? Yes. Acesulfame K has no effect on blood glucose levels.

What they are:  Sugar alcohols are natural sugar substitutes. They are not sugars and they are not alcohols either. Sugar alcohols provide about half of the calories of sugar.

Where they are: Sugar-free products including energy bars. Chemical names may include erythritol, lactitol, maltitol, mannitol, sorbitol and xylitol (Note: all sugar alcohols end with “tol”). Some may cause stomach upset.

How sweet they are: Less sweet than sugar

OK for diabetes? Sugar alcohols do have an effect on blood glucose levels, but it is not as dramatic as straight sugar. Some math is required. The body does not absorb half the carbs in sugar alcohols. This means that you should subtract half the sugar alcohol grams from the total carb grams when carb counting.

What it is: Derived from the flower of the coconut palm, coconut oil is also called palm sugar. Unlike other non-sugar sweeteners, coconut oil is rich in vitamins and nutrients.

Where it is: Health food stores.

How sweet it is: Not as sweet as sugar. Coconut oil has a caramel taste.

OK for diabetes?  Yes. It has a low glycemic index, which is the number given to foods based on how quickly they can spike blood sugar. Lower is better for people with diabetes.

What it is: Made by bees, honey is thick, gold, sticky and sweet.

Where it is: Some baked goods and cereals are sweetened with honey. It can also be purchased and used on its own.

How sweet it is: Not as sweet as sugar

OK for diabetes? Neutral. There is no advantage to using honey instead of sugar. Honey has slightly more carbohydrates and more calories per teaspoon than sugar.

It’s always a good idea to talk to your doctor, nutritionist or a certified diabetes educator if you have any questions or concerns about how a sweetener may affect your blood sugar levels.

What is sucralose, and is it safe for you?

Everyone likes sweets. It’s an evolved response to make us seek energy-dense sugars in the wild and eat as much as possible of it. But we’ve also learned that too much sugar can be bad for you, so we’ve developed a hack: sweets our bodies can’t metabolize. All the taste, none of the calories. Which is quite amazing.

Image credits OpenFoodFacts.org

So today, let’s take a look at how we’ve managed to hijack one of the most central drives of any living thing, that of feeding themselves, to give ourselves a whole lot of enjoyment while doing almost no ‘feeding’ at all. One very good example of this is sucralose.

Sugarless sweet

So how exactly do you make something sweet that contains zero calories? The wording here is key: it’s not that sucralose doesn’t have any calories — it’s just that you can’t have them. Not most of them, anyway.

Our bodies obtain energy from food by breaking down the chemical bonds which hold it together. Part of what we eat is excreted through the process of digestion, however, because there’s a limit to what our metabolism can process. Certain bonds are either too energy-poor to warrant processing, or just beyond our metabolism’s ability.

Sucralose starts its life as sucrose (sugar) but is transformed through a chemical process. Three oxygen-hydrogen pairs in the sugar molecule are replaced with chlorine atoms. This tiny change makes sucralose pass unprocessed and unabsorbed through our body, essentially locking away the calories it contains. According to the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA), sucralose is actually 600 times as sweet as sugar, and that it can be used “virtually anywhere sugar is used, including cooking and baking” due to its chemical stability.

While its lack of caloric content makes sucralose useful as a sweetener in ‘diet’ items such as gum, cakes, or sodas, arguably its most important use is for diabetics. Sucralose has no effect on a consumer’s carbohydrate metabolism, insulin secretion, or blood glucose levels, so it can be safely consumed by such individuals without health risks (unlike sugar). Due to its high chemical stability, it can be used for alternatives to a wide range of products. Because it doesn’t actually do much in the body, it’s also safe to use as a sweetener for medicine. The commercial name for sucralose is “Splenda”.

Now do note: sucralose is calorie-free, but in its final form, it still contains some calories. This comes down to the fillers used to give it a sugar-like texture and appearance (usually these additives are maltodextrin or dextrose).

How did we get it?

Image credits Vaccinationist via Wikimedia.

Sucralose was first discovered in 1976 through a cooperation between Queen Elizabeth College and Tate & Lyle, PLC. Folk wisdom has it that it was actually an accident, as a researcher misread the word ‘test’ for ‘taste’ and actually tasted the compound. Which you should never do lightly in a lab setting.

The FDA approved its use for 15 food categories in 1998 and as a wide-range sweetener back in 1999.

Is it safe?

“Sucralose has been extensively studied and more than 110 safety studies were reviewed by FDA in approving the use of sucralose as a general-purpose sweetener for food,” the FDA explains.

Furthermore, the FDA determined that the acceptable daily intake (ADI) level for sucralose and four other “high-intensity sweeteners” would not be exceeded even by “high consumers”, meaning you’re extremely unlikely to go over this limit. This ADI is the quantity of a substance that is deemed safe even for an individual that would consume it every day over the course of their entire lifetime, and it takes into account pregnant or lactating women.

For sucralose, this ADI is 5 mg/kg of body weight/day, roughly translating to 165 packets per day for your average person.

That being said, there is (still limited) evidence that sucralose can negatively impact the microbial communities living in the gut, at least in mice, leading to increased inflammation in the intestines and liver. This doesn’t necessarily mean that humans will see the same effect (not every biological process translates well between species), but it isn’t the most encouraging finding, either.

Long-term inflammation can promote obesity and other health issues. At the same time, while sucralose is used in ‘diet’ food items, some critics have raised the concern that in some cases it may end up making us put on more weight than regular sugar, as individuals might learn to worry less about their sugar intake and thus consume more calories overall.

Finally, while sucralose doesn’t influence blood sugar levels in the general population, at least one study found that obese people who don’t normally consume artificial sweeteners reacted differently. For them, sucralose consumption did lead to elevated blood sugar and insulin levels. However, I haven’t been able to find any follow-up research on this topic.

One area, at least, where we know that sucralose is hands-down better than regular sugar is tooth health. The bacteria in our mouths have as hard a time processing it as our own bodies, so it does ‘starve them out’ to an extent and limit tooth decay. That doesn’t mean you can chow down on endless sucralose cupcakes and have perfect teeth, there are other ingredients in there that still promote tooth decay and you still need to care for them. But it’s less of an impact than that of regular sugar. Sucralose is often used as a sweetener in toothpaste because of this.

For now, while we don’t have everything tied down, we’re very confident that most people can consume sucralose over the long term without any adverse effects. Still, public health institutions around the world strongly advise that if you believe consumption of such sweeteners affects your health you should stop your intake and talk to a doctor. It pays to be safe.

SUKRALOSA

It is very difficult to do at least one day without sweets. Sweets help us maintain a positive mood and overcome stress. What if diabetes? Overweight? In this case, sugar is practically excluded from the diet. Sugar, but not sweets!

A high-quality, safe sugar substitute – sucralose, which was discovered about 40 years ago (in 1976), but appeared in Russia quite recently and is still little known. Although for people with diabetes and / or prone to overweight, it can be an excellent alternative sweetness.

Sucralose is obtained from regular sugar, and 14 years of study and testing in leading scientific laboratories in the world have shown that sucralose:

  • Does not alter blood glucose levels, does not interact with nutrients, does not promote insulin release – optimal for diabetics.
  • Safe during pregnancy – does not penetrate the placenta and does not affect the development of the fetus.
  • Can be used for breastfeeding and young children.It is even used in infant formula.
  • Has virtually no calories and does not affect weight.
  • Does not cause caries.
  • Only 15% of sucralose is absorbed by the body – during the day they are completely excreted in the urine.
  • Thermostable – does not lose activity and its useful properties during any heat treatment: it is successfully used in the production of drinks and baked goods.
  • Fully soluble biologically – does not harm nature and the animal world.
  • Sucralose tastes the same as regular sugar and dissolves well in any beverage.

FDA reviewed and approved by the FDA. Sucralose lacks carcinogenic properties that affect the growth of unhealthy cells.

The use of sucralose is recommended by the World Health Organization (WHO), not only for diseases requiring sugar limitation, but also for practically healthy people.

Sucralose use especially indicated:

  • for diabetes mellitus
  • for obesity and overweight
  • for depressed mood and depression (to stimulate positive emotions)

Sucralose is actively used in the food industry:

  • Drinks
  • Fermented milk products
  • Baking, cakes
  • Desserts, jellies, jams
  • Dry confectionery mixtures
  • Canned berries and fruits

Ingredients:

Sucralose, maltodextrin

Limitations

Individual intolerance to product components

Consumer packaging

Weight: 40 g

Shelf life and storage conditions

Store in a dry, dark place.Expiration date: 3 years.

Diabetes mellitus

for diabetes

How to eat properly with diabetes

How to eat properly with diabetes

Diabetes mellitus is a serious disease that requires not only drug therapy, but also dietary changes. However, this is not a reason to stop enjoying delicious food or even go on a hunger strike.

A well-chosen diet will help to avoid worsening of the condition in type 1 diabetes and to achieve better health if type 2 diabetes is diagnosed.

The main task of nutrition in diabetes of any type is to control carbohydrate metabolism and not to allow a sharp intake of large amounts of glucose into the bloodstream.

To do this, you need:

1. Refuse foods with a high glycemic index , which provoke a sharp release of sugar into the blood. This does not mean that it is necessary to exclude all carbohydrates from the diet – some of them, the so-called slow ones, on the contrary, allow a diabetic to maintain such an important stable blood sugar level.

2. Choose sweets containing sugar substitutes approved for diabetes patients – sorbitol, xylitol, saccharin, aspartame, sucralose, etc. Your doctor will recommend the right products for you. Patients with diabetes are not recommended foods with a lot of sugar: sweets, chocolate, ice cream, honey, dried fruits.

3. Switch to fractional power supply. By dividing the daily diet into several small portions of the same amount of carbohydrates and calories, you can avoid hunger, which usually leads to overeating and the use of prohibited foods.

4. Eat a varied, low-calorie diet. Its energy value should be 2300–2500 kcal – by excluding sugar-containing and fatty foods.

Especially for those suffering from diabetes, a special nutrition system was developed several decades ago, known as Diet No. 9, which, after consulting a doctor, can easily be adapted for eating at home.

This food system is quite suitable not only for a diabetic patient, but also for his loved ones who want to make their lifestyle more healthy.

, okroshka, weak low-fat meat and fish broths with vegetables

fat sour cream

Allowed Not allowed
Rye, wheat, protein-bran bread, non-flavored flour products, special “diabetic” bread Sweet and sweet flour products Vegetables

Strong, fatty broths, milk soups with semolina, rice, noodles
Low-fat meat and poultry, rabbit in boiled, stewed or steamed form Fatty meat, geese, ducks, smoked meat and sausages, canned food, offal
Lean fish – boiled, baked.Canned fish in tomato or its own juice Fatty and salted fish, canned food in oil, caviar
Milk, kefir, yogurt, low-fat cottage cheese, low-fat and unsalted cheese Sweet curds and yoghurts, cream,
Buckwheat, millet, pearl barley oat groats. Legumes: beans, lentils Rice, semolina, pasta
Low carbohydrate vegetables: cabbage, zucchini, eggplant, tomatoes, cucumbers, lettuce Salted and pickled vegetables
Any sour fruits and berries Grapes, raisins, bananas, dates, figs

In addition, you will have to completely stop drinking alcohol.Some drinks – liqueurs, fortified wines and liqueurs – contain sugar, which is dangerous for diabetes. In addition, some time after drinking, any alcohol blocks the flow of glucose from the liver and sharply reduces its level in the blood, which is dangerous for diabetics.

Diabetes diet is quite simple and varied. The main thing is to monitor the amount of simple carbohydrates in foods, give up fatty foods, do not overeat or starve. And it is imperative to consult a doctor – after all, only a specialist is able to correct nutritional therapy in time and correctly.

Is it true that sweeteners are healthier than sugar?

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We are all a generation spoiled with sugar and soaked in it.

An excess of sugar in the diet can contribute to weight gain and trigger the development of diabetes, so it will be better and healthier if each of us eat no more than 7 teaspoons of sugar per day.

Public Health England expects sugar consumption (including sugar in other foods) to decrease by 50% by 2020.

The British authorities plan to achieve this goal through the wider distribution of sugar substitutes. They are not high in calories, but they give a sweet taste. But how beneficial are they to health?

So what are sweeteners?

There are a huge number of them, they are added to a wide variety of foods, including diet meals and drinks.

They all serve one purpose: to add sweetness to the taste with a minimum of calories.

Some of these — saccharin, sucralose, acesulfame potassium and aspartame — are much sweeter than sugar, making them ideal for adding to low-calorie soft drinks and sugar-free gum.

Xylitol and sorbitol are more like regular sugar and are therefore suitable for use in the confectionery industry.

Can I use them?

If you ask experts, most of them will say that this is your own business and your choice.

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Limiting sugar intake is not bad at all, it helps to reduce the risks of diabetes and obesity, and helps to maintain dental health.

When you realize that a regular can of Coca-Cola contains the equivalent of 9 lumps of sugar – more than an adult’s daily requirement – you involuntarily start thinking about a diet version of the drink.

But how much healthier are sweeteners? Of course, the use of low-calorie and low-sweet foods does not guarantee you cheerfulness and harmony. These foods are not a substitute for a healthy diet and nutrition.

Since sweeteners are artificial, are they not good for your health?

Many are chemical products, but there are also natural ones. For example, stevia.

In addition, synthetic does not always mean that it is unhealthy.

By law, the food label must clearly state whether it contains low calorie sweeteners so that people know what they are buying.

Will switching to sugar substitutes help me lose weight?

Reducing your calorie intake will help you lose weight. However, how much you shed depends on your overall diet, as well as exercise volume, genetics, and your metabolism.

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Dr. Stacey Lockyer of the British Nutrition Foundation believes switching to sugar substitutes and low-sugar foods can help those seeking to lose weight.

“There is evidence from studies, both short and long term, that people who eat low-calorie foods are losing weight. When it comes to drinks, there is nothing better than plain water, although some find it difficult to skip sugary drinks. sugary drinks with sugar substitutes “.

Are they safe?

The production of artificial sugar substitutes is tightly controlled, and these products are subject to rigorous checks.

A manufacturer of sugar substitutes must provide evidence that its products:

  • are not harmful to health and do not contribute to the development of cancer
  • does not affect reproductive functions
  • does not accumulate in the body
  • does not cause allergic reactions

For example, if If you eat aspartame, a safe daily dose for an adult is up to 14 servings of a sugar-free soft drink, or up to 40 teaspoons of sweetener for tea or coffee.For a child, this dose is equal to 4 servings of the drink and 13 teaspoons of sweetener.

What about side effects?

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The media wrote a lot about the possible dangers of eating sugar substitutes, but there is no scientific evidence for this. There are people who should not eat them.

Sweeteners are contraindicated for children under 3 years of age, but they can be consumed by pregnant women.

People with phenylketonuria should not use aspartame.

Everyone else can eat sugar substitutes.

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Sucralose – what is it?

Artificial sweeteners (for example, sweetener Splenda”), , in contrast to natural sugar, are believed to be a safe alternative for anyone suffering from diabetes and obesity.However, there are serious risks associated with sucralose, which is part of the sweetener. As more detailed studies are carried out, scientists are discovering more and more side effects of this substance.

Sucralose is one of the most commonly used artificial sweeteners in the world and is added to foods and beverages to reduce calories. Although advertised as a dietary product, scientists are concerned about the side effects and dangers it may entail.

Instead of replacing all the sugar in your home with sweetener in the hopes of reducing your calorie intake, look for healthier alternatives that not only give your food a natural sweetness, but also a serving of antioxidants, vitamins, minerals, and dietary fiber.

What is sucralose?

Sucralose is a chlorinated sucrose derivative. This means that it contains chlorine and is derived from sugar.

Sucralose production process takes place in several stages, during which three hydrogen-oxygen groups of sugar are replaced by chlorine atoms. This substitution enhances the sweetness of sucralose.

Sucralose was originally discovered during the development of a new insecticidal compound and was not intended for human consumption.

However, later it was presented to the masses as a “natural sugar substitute”, while society did not even know about its toxicity.

In 1998, the US FDA ( FDA ) approved sucralose for use in 15 food and beverage categories, including baked goods, frozen dairy desserts, chewing gum, beverages, and sugar substitutes. Later in 1999, FDA expanded this list to allow sucralose to be used as a sweetener in all categories of foods and beverages.

Splenda Facts

Splend a is the most common sucralose product on the market today.It is the most popular sweetener in the United States.

This is likely due to the fact that Splenda is approximately 600 times sweeter than sugar. Here are some facts about the brand:

  • Splenda ” is a synthetic sugar that the body cannot recognize.
  • Sucralose is only 5%. The other 95% comes from the filler maltodextrin and corn-based dextrose, a type of sugar.
  • Splenda is used as a sweetener in cooking and has been added to thousands of “no calories” foods.
  • In fact, the calorie content of Splenda is 3.36 calories per gram due to the dextrose and malnotextrin content.

The data suggests that sucralose products are much more popular than any other artificial sweetener.

Why is sucralose so popular? It dissolves easily in ethanol, methanol and water.

This means it can be used in fat and water based products, including alcoholic beverages.

Other artificial sweeteners, such as aspartame and sodium saccharinate, are not easily soluble. For this reason, their range of applications is not so wide.

Side effects and dangers

1. May cause diabetes

A study published in the journal Diabetes Care suggests that the risk of developing diabetes increases with sucralose.According to this study, daily consumption of diet soda increases the risk of metabolic syndrome by 36% and type 2 diabetes by 67%.

This means that sucralose is among the causative agents of diabetes. Therefore, it should be avoided by those who are at risk, as this substance can lead to serious negative consequences.

Scientists first noticed this trend in a study involving volunteers.Seventeen insulin-sensitive obese volunteers underwent an oral glucose tolerance test after ingestion of sucralose or water.

In addition to the fact that after ingestion of the sweetener there was a “rise in plasma glucose concentration”, insulin sensitivity decreased by 23%, which interfered with the absorption of glucose into cells.

A more recent 2020 study, published in the journal Cell Metabolism , found that consuming sucralose along with carbohydrates rapidly disrupts glucose metabolism and therefore regulates the control of glucose metabolism between the brain and intestines.

2. Increases the risk of irritable bowel syndrome and Crohn’s disease

Several years ago, Xin Keen, M.D. of the New Jersey School of Medicine, USA, discovered that consumption of sucralose was associated with symptoms IBS , ulcerative colitis and Crohn’s disease. Dr. Keane made this discovery while studying a spike in IBS cases in Alberta, Canada, over a 20-year period. The incidence increased by 643%.

The statistics prompted Dr. Keene to start research. And what did he find?

Sucralose has been shown to be far more detrimental to beneficial gut bacteria than other artificial sweeteners such as saccharin. The fact is that from 65% to 95% of sucralose is excreted in the feces unchanged. In 1991, Canada became the first country in the world to approve the use of sucralose as an artificial sweetener. In other words, there is a direct relationship between the amount of sucralose consumed and the increased incidence of inflammatory bowel disease.

A recent study that appeared in the journal Inflammatory Bowel Diseases found that using artificial sweeteners such as Splenda doubles the risk of Crohn’s disease and may impair intestinal antimicrobial activity in patients with Crohn’s disease. and other pro-inflammatory conditions.

In some cases, sucralose can cause bloating, as it is associated with a number of serious pro-inflammatory conditions that affect the functioning of the digestive system.It can also worsen inflammation and in some cases cause symptoms IBS .

3. Associated with “leaky gut”

Since our body cannot digest sucralose, it passes through the gastrointestinal tract unchanged, damaging the intestinal wall. This can lead to leaky gut syndrome.

Several studies have confirmed the harmful effects of sucralose on the intestines. Thus, Journal of Environmental Toxicology and Hygiene published an animal study conducted by Duke University Medical Center, USA, which states that Splenda not only significantly reduces the number of beneficial bacteria in the intestine, but also increases the pH of feces …This indicates a decrease in the amount of nutrients that the body assimilates.

4. When heated, it can form toxic and carcinogenic compounds

Research published in “ Journal of Toxicology and Environmental Hygiene ” showed that when exposed to high temperatures, sucralose can produce hazardous chloropropanols, a possibly toxic class of compounds. Sucralose is used primarily in baked goods, and research suggests that the stability of this artificial sweetener decreases with increasing temperature and pH.

When heated, not only the decomposition of sucralose occurs, but also the formation of chloropropanols, a group of pollutants that includes genotoxic, carcinogenic and tumor-forming compounds.

In a study published in the journal Food Chemistry , the scientists concluded that “care must be taken when using sucralose as a sweetener when baking products containing glycerol and lipids.”

It should be noted that further research is required on the effect of sucralose on cancer development. However, given that the sweetener is most commonly used in foods that need to be cooked, the results can be disappointing.

5. Associated with weight gain

Think sucralose in your coffee will help you lose weight? It turns out that epidemiological studies with volunteers and laboratory studies in animals have revealed a relationship between the use of artificial sweeteners and weight gain.

What’s more, sweeteners can increase the risk of metabolic syndrome, type 2 diabetes, hypertension, and cardiovascular disease. These studies did not specifically assess the effect of sucralose on weight gain, but other studies also failed to find an association between sucralose and weight loss.

In an 18-month experiment published in New England Journal of Medicine , 641 children (477 completed the study) were randomly assigned to groups.One of them received daily 250 ml of a sugary drink that did not contain calories, and the other received a sugar drink containing 104 calories.

The sugar-free drink contained 34 mg of sucralose and 12 mg of acesulfame K. By the end of the experiment, the group with sugary drinks consumed 46,627 more calories.

However, the overall weight gain was only 1 kg more compared to the group that drank sugar-free drinks. Scientists cannot explain such a minor difference.

Another study of adolescents showed no consistent decline in recruitment rates two years later, after families were offered sweetened drinks instead of sugar drinks.

Does this mean sucralose contributes to weight gain? Well, we know that in most cases it doesn’t help you lose weight in any way. And for people who use sweeteners in baked goods, cooking, or drinks to track their calorie intake, sucralose is not an effective weight loss method.

Cases of side effects of sucralose and products with the use of “ Splenda ” have been reported, including headaches and allergic reactions. In addition, recent research has shown that consuming sucralose negatively affects gut health and even causes metabolic syndrome.

If you are considering using sweeteners to lose weight, keep in mind that research has not confirmed their effectiveness.Look instead for natural, lower-calorie sweeteners like raw honey and stevia.

Products and uses

Sucralose, or “ Splenda ,” is used in many foods and beverages to help make them “healthier.” Sometimes, when choosing a product in a store, we do not even suspect that it contains sucralose.

It can even be found in toothpaste, cough drops, or vitamins.

Before buying, please read the composition of the product. Sometimes products that say “no sugar,” “light,” or “0 calories” contain sucralose. Do not trust these labels, because they hide artificial sweeteners.

Sucralose is often found in foods such as:

  • carbonated drinks
  • mineral water
  • diet iced tea
  • juice
  • “sugar-free” sauces, dressings and syrups
  • chewing gum
  • cocoa drinks “no added sugar” or “no fat”
  • some protein powders, bars and shakes
  • baked goods “without sugar”
  • ice cream labeled “dietary” or “sugar-free”
  • popcorn
  • “light” yoghurts
  • sugar-free sweets
  • “low-calorie” chocolate
  • mint lozenges and hard candies
  • toothpaste

Is it safe?

Not really.Sucralose can cause many problems: metabolic syndrome, digestive problems, and weight gain. It may not affect your body in the best way.

Side effects caused by consuming sucralose include:

  • change in glucose and insulin levels
  • increased risk of digestive problems
  • change in the state of the intestine and damage to the gastrointestinal tract
  • death of probiotics
  • may affect the development of some types of cancer
  • Formation of toxic components when heated
  • Possible weight gain

Sucralose, Stevia and Aspartame

Sucralose

Sucralose is an artificial sweetener used in “sugar free” products.It is presented as a calorie-free sweetener that can help you lose weight. However, research suggests that this is not the case.

Sucralose is found in many foods, for example:

  • baked goods
  • yogurt
  • ice cream
  • candy
  • diet carbonated drinks
  • mineral water
  • protein bars

Although FDA has approved the use of sucralose in foods and beverages, including baby products, it can cause some bowel problems.Research suggests it is associated with leaky gut syndrome, IBS , and Crohn’s disease.

This sweetener can even lead to diabetes, although it is often used in “sugar-free” foods recommended for diabetic diets.

Sucralose and Stevia

Stevia is an edible herb that has been familiar to humans for over 1,500 years. Unlike sucralose and aspartame, it is a natural sweetener.

Stevia extract is believed to be nearly 200 times sweeter than sugar. It can be used as an alternative to sugar in coffee or smoothies without causing the dangerous side effects that most artificial sweeteners do.

In fact, stevia has anti-cancer, anti-diabetic properties, normalizes cholesterol levels and promotes weight loss.

One significant study compares the effects of stevia, sugar, and sweeteners on food intake, food safety, and glucose / insulin levels.The study, published in the journal Appetite , included 19 lean healthy volunteers and 12 overweight volunteers between the ages of 18 and 50. They consumed stevia, sucrose (table sugar), or aspartame before lunch and dinner.

After consuming stevia, the participants did not feel hungry or overeat, unlike the group consuming sucrose. What’s more, the scientists reported that “stevia significantly lowered post-meal glucose levels, which was not the case with sugar and aspartame.”

In other words, stevia helps to normalize blood sugar levels and reduce the risk of diabetes, while drinks with sugar and sweeteners consumed before, during or after meals will dramatically increase sugar levels.

Sucralose and Aspartame

Aspartame is an artificial sweetener often marketed under the brands Equal and NutraSweet . It is present in products such as:

  • diet carbonated drinks
  • sugar-free refreshing lollipops
  • sugar-free corn flakes
  • flavored water
  • meal replacement
  • sports drinks

Companies using aspartame claim to be safe, but 92% of independent studies point to side effects.The most dangerous are the aggravation (or occurrence) of diabetes, an increased risk of heart disease, the possible occurrence of brain disorders, mood swings, weight gain, and the possible development of cancer.

Like sucralose, aspartame is FDA approved for use in foods and beverages. In fact, it is found in a wide variety of products, including even some medications.

Both sweeteners have dangerous side effects and should be avoided whenever possible.Choose healthier natural alternatives like stevia instead.

Alternative

If you want to add more sweetness to your food, you don’t need to use regular sugar or sweeteners. There are a number of natural ways to sweeten your food without risking unwanted effects.

Here are just a few of them:

  • Stevia. Stevia is a natural sweetener derived from a plant of the Asteraceae family ( Asteraceae ).This “sweet plant” has been used for thousands of years. Stevia is one of the best alternatives for diabetics. It’s great for baking, but keep in mind that this herb is nearly 200 times sweeter than sugar, so keep it in moderation.
  • Raw honey. Raw honey is rich in enzymes, antioxidants, vitamins and minerals. One tablespoon of this honey contains about 64 calories. Its glycemic index is lower than that of a banana. Raw honey is not suitable for cooking, but it can be added to yogurt, salad, cereal, or spread over toast for extra sweetness.
  • Maple Syrup. Maple syrup contains 24 different types of antioxidants. It is a rich source of manganese, calcium, potassium and zinc. Unlike sucralose, maple syrup is heat stable and can be used to make cookies, pies, pancakes, and icing. Choose Grade B or C 100 Organic Maple Syrup
  • Coconut sugar. Coconut sugar is obtained from the dried sap of the coconut tree. It contains small amounts of vitamins and minerals.Short-chain fatty acids, polyphenols, antioxidants, and fiber are also found in coconut sugar. It can be used in any dish instead of regular sugar.
  • Black syrup. Molasses is obtained from raw cane sugar. The raw sugar is boiled until it turns into a thick, sweet syrup. Unlike regular table sugar, molasses is highly nutritious. It has been proven to contain more phenolic compounds and has a higher antioxidant activity than refined sugar, rapeseed honey and dates.It can be paired with coconut sugar.
  • What is sucralose and why is it dangerous? Sucralose is a chlorinated sucrose derivative that is used as a calorie-free sugar substitute. Research shows that it can be hazardous to health.
  • The most popular sucralose-containing product in the world today is the sweetener Splenda . This product is about 600 times sweeter than sugar.
  • In addition to a sweetener, sucralose is used in the food and beverage industry, including diet sodas, iced tea, ice cream, popsicles, yoghurts, baked goods, chewing gum, candy and protein bars.
  • A recent study concluded that consumption of sucralose has a number of side effects:
    • can lead to diabetes
    • increases the risk of IBS and Crohn’s disease
    • can cause leaky gut
    • produces toxic and carcinogenic compounds when heated
    • can contribute to weight gain
  • Look for safer natural alternatives to sweeteners such as stevia, raw honey, or maple syrup.

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Honey, stevia, aspartame – how to replace sugar ?: Society Articles ➕1, 08/10/2021

Sugar, or sucrose, is a carbohydrate. To understand why it is dangerous and why we need to look for a substitute for sugar, let’s remember how it affects the body. Carbohydrates are categorized as simple (eg, white flour, soda, candy) and complex (cereals, whole grain breads). The latter break down more slowly and release energy to cells gradually, so we feel full for longer.Simple carbohydrates quickly raise blood sugar levels. Abuse of them leads to diabetes, cardiovascular diseases, increases the risk of oncology.

Sucrose is broken down into glucose and fructose and is rapidly absorbed into the bloodstream from the intestines. In response to an increase in blood glucose levels, the pancreas produces insulin, a hormone that allows glucose to access cells. Glucose is the body’s main source of energy. It is consumed by cells and stored as glycogen to maintain blood glucose levels.

Too much sweets – the cause of diseases such as obesity, diabetes, caries. They are also called “diseases of civilization”, because sugar production on an industrial scale began only about 200 years ago. Next came the need to monitor your diet and limit sugar intake.

According to the recommendations of the WHO (World Health Organization), the consumption of free sugars (these are all monosaccharides and disaccharides added to food by the manufacturer, plus those naturally present in foods such as honey or fruits) for both adults and children should be reduced to 10% of daily amount of calories (energy consumption).This will reduce the risk of diabetes, obesity, tooth decay, and other noncommunicable diseases. Reducing to 5% (about six teaspoons a day) will benefit the body.

How much is it in practice? You can clarify the required daily calorie content using these formulas. On average, the norm for women is 2 thousand kcal, for men – 2.5 thousand kcal. Free sugars should be approximately 200 kcal for women and 250 kcal for men, or no more than 50 and 63 g of white sugar, respectively. One teaspoon of sugar (without a slide) weighs 5 g – which means that girls can afford no more than 10 spoons a day.

It is important to take into account not only the sugar that you put into the dish yourself, but also the “hidden” sugar that is added to ready-made products: yoghurts, sausages, carbonated drinks, sauces, breakfast cereals, etc. You can calculate the hidden sugar by examining the information on the label.

Natural sugar in whole fruits is balanced with fiber, minerals and vitamins. Eat them within reasonable limits for health.

If you do not have enough motivation to change your diet, we recommend watching the documentary “Sugar”.The film’s hero, director and actor Damon Gamo puts on the experience of consuming 40 tablespoons of sugar a day for two months, while eating foods labeled “healthy”. Let’s not spoil, but let’s say: the results of the experiment are shocking.

Sweeteners are an alternative to sugar. They are used to sweeten foods, ready meals and drinks. The advantage is that they do not trigger the release of insulin as powerful as sugar. The sweetness is determined by the coefficient: for sucrose – 1, for fructose – up to 1.73.

Sugar substitutes are divided into natural and synthetic.

Fructose is prepared from starch (corn), sucrose (sugarcane or beetroot) or inulin (chicory root). In its natural form, it is found most of all in honey, fruits, berries. The calorie content of fructose is the same as that of sugar, but due to the greater sweetness it can be added less, reducing the final calorie content of the product.

However, excessive consumption of fructose in combination with a lack of magnesium causes an increase in visceral fat (enveloping the internal organs).Internal obesity leads to the development of type 2 diabetes, heart disease, etc.

Honey is valued for its natural origin and medicinal properties. But as a substitute for sugar, this is not the best choice due to the excessive fructose content (40%). Not suitable for vegans. Often causes allergies.

Erythritol (erythritol) , or “melon sugar”, is obtained from plants (corn or tapioca). Its sweetness coefficient is 0.7. Plus – it does not harm the teeth, which is why it is added to rinses and toothpastes.It has almost zero calories, so it is used for weight loss. Does not affect insulin production, suitable for diabetics. If the daily allowance (35 g) is exceeded, it can cause a laxative effect, bloating, flatulence. Considered a safe sweetener.

Stevioside is obtained from stevia leaves. Like erythritol, this sweetener contains no calories. Does not increase insulin, may damage intestinal microflora, but is recognized as safe, for example, FDA (US Food and Drug Administration) .Stevia is 200-300 times sweeter than sugar! The main disadvantage is an unpleasant aftertaste.

Xylitol is equal in sweetness and caloric content to sugar, but does not destroy tooth enamel, therefore it is used in chewing gum and toothpastes. Xylitol is obtained from corn and cotton. It is permissible to take no more than 40-50 g per day.

Sorbitol is less sweet and nutritious than sugar. Contained in rowan berries, apricots, apples. May cause diarrhea, bloating, abdominal pain at doses above 20 g per day.

In addition, mixed sweeteners can be found on the market: for example, erythritol plus stevia. There are also fakes – for example, stevia with added sugar.

Basically they have zero calorie content, and the sweetness is sometimes hundreds and thousands of times greater than that of sugar.

The range of synthetic sweeteners is constantly expanding. Let’s describe the most famous ones.

Aspartame (sweetness 200) is known as a sweetener for sugar-free sodas. Not absorbed in the intestine, but breaks down into methyl alcohol, aspartic acid and phenylalanine.Contraindicated in people with intolerance to the latter (phenylketonuria). Harmful with prolonged use for intestinal microflora, liver and brain. Acceptable – 3.5 g per day.

Neotam (sweetness – 7-13 thousand) and Advantam (sweetness – 20 thousand) appeared as “descendants” of aspartame. Both are approved for people with phenylketonuria and diabetics. Neotam and Advantam are acceptable in doses up to 0.3 and 32.8 mg / kg of body weight per day, respectively.

Acesulfame potassium (sweetness – 200).May stimulate insulin release. Does not cause cancer. With long-term use and high dosages, it causes DNA damage, therefore, it is not recommended for children, pregnant and lactating women. Allowed up to 1 g per day.

Saccharin (sweetness – 300). Laboratory rats preferred saccharin to cocaine, which confirms the risk of addiction when using sweeteners. However, the FDA has declared saccharin to be safe. Acceptable – 0.2 g per day.

Sucralose (sweetness – 600) is a sucrose derivative.Increases insulin, can damage the intestinal microflora. Acceptable – 0.2 g per day.

Sodium cyclamate (sweetness – 50) has been banned in the United States since 1969. He was suspected of having a harmful effect on the kidneys. But now the lifting of the ban is being discussed. Approved in the Russian Federation. Contraindicated in pregnant women, lactating women and people with renal diseases.

These synthetic sugar substitutes are both beneficial and harmful. All of them (except cyclamate) are recognized as safe by the same FDA. However, when they are used, the brain does not receive signals about the intake of calories.Because of this, the sweetener can increase sugar cravings, to the point of addiction, and dull the feeling of satiety, provoking overeating.

These risks are confirmed by large studies on the effect on the body of diet soda. The participants in the first of them had an increase in visceral fat, in the second, the risk of developing metabolic syndrome and type 2 diabetes increased.

This is honey and syrups from dates, Jerusalem artichoke, agave, carob, maple syrup. They are used for making dietary desserts.

These foods are high in calories due to the abundance of fructose. They have less effect on blood sugar, therefore they are used in diets for diabetes. They contain nutrients, so liquid sweets cannot be counted as empty calories. But their consumption also needs to be limited.

These are healthy sweets, which, in addition to sugar calories, contain valuable substances. In addition to fruits, dried fruits and nuts, these include:

1

dark chocolate

2

kozinaki in honey

3

sugar-free apple pastille

4

cereal bars with dried fruits and nuts, berries )

6

popsicles (ice cream from fruits and berries)

7

candies from dried fruits

8

smoothies from fruits, herbs and berries

9

preserves and jams (on fructose) 10

desserts without sugar with the addition of honey, dried fruits and fruit syrups

Sugar is the first thing that is excluded from the diet of those who are losing weight.Indeed, while insulin is “dealing” with glucose from sugar, it also “orders” the fat cells to retain fat. Therefore, as long as we eat sweets, we do not burn fat. What are some healthy sweetener substitutes?

Fruits and berries. Fresh and frozen, in the form of smoothies, added to cereals, fruit salad and whole. Eat them only in the morning. Avoid juices and very sweet fruits (grapes, tropical fruits). Give preference to less ripe fruits: they have less fructose.

Nuts and dried fruits are useful only in small quantities due to their high nutritional value. Three walnuts provide 100 kcal, and 100 g of dried apricots – 240 kcal. Two or three pieces are suitable as a substitute for sweets for tea and coffee, sweeten porridge. Avoid candied fruits: they are sweet due to the sugar syrup.

Vegetables and vegetable chips. If you just want to chew on something, such as in front of the TV, make yourself a vegetable plate with carrot, cucumber, pumpkin, and vegetable chips.Chips can be purchased or cooked on your own, but without the addition of oil. Fiber will dull hunger, and you will satisfy your chewing reflex.

Pleasure. The best sweeteners. Sweets give a person a feeling of joy and satisfaction, and then – a sharp drop in blood glucose levels and craving for a new “dose”. Addictiveness arises. To give up sweets, replace them with other treats. And during the period of weight loss, it is especially important to reduce the level of anxiety and do pleasant things away from the refrigerator, so as not to “seize stress”.

Sugar substitutes are optional in the diet, and some are harmful to health. A healthy person can do without them. They should be used after consulting a doctor.

If you can reduce the free sugars on your daily menu to a minimum and endure the sugar breaking without sweeteners, your taste preferences will change, sweets will naturally leave the diet.

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Natalya Markova

Konstantin Chernov

Info Field »ERITRIT.Benefits for the body and possible consequences

July 23, 2019

Due to the massive enthusiasm for healthy lifestyles, more and more sugar substitutes are appearing on the market. But are they really capable of replacing sugar and are they safe to use? This is what we have to find out. In this article, we will look at one of the types of sweeteners – erythritol.

What is erythritol?

Erythritol is a natural sweetener. In nature, it is found in various vegetables and fruits, therefore it is often called “melon sugar”.

In Russia, it is sold in powder form and in the form of syrups. Often used in sweets intended for diabetics or food-conscious people. Produced under the code E968 .
Erythritol tastes like regular sugar, but only matches 70% of the sweetness of sugar.

Erythritol first appeared in 1993 on the Japanese market, and later conquered other countries. Today, several sugar substitutes are produced on its basis: Sukrin, FitParad, 100% erythritol, Lakanto and iSweet .They differ not only in the form of release, but also in the composition.

If “Sukrin” and “100% erythritol” consist exclusively of erythritol, then the rest of the sweeteners contain additives. So, in “FitParad” add sucralose and stevioside. “Lakanto” and “iSweet” have a completely natural composition. Together with erythritol, they have an extract of the Chinese fruit Luo Han Guo or Arhat in different percentages.
The Latin name for the sweetener is Erythritol or 1,2,3,4-Butanetetro .

How many calories are in erythritol?

Unlike many sweeteners, erythritol has no energy value. In other words, it has zero calories. What can not but please people who monitor their weight.

Is erythritol suitable for diabetics?

Erythritol has not been shown to affect blood glucose readings. In addition, it does not cause side effects in either healthy people or people with diabetes mellitus.

Effect of erythritol on the body

● Does not violate the intestinal microflora.
● Does not interfere with the work of microflora, since 90% of the sweetener does not reach the large intestine. From the small intestine, erythritol enters the bloodstream and is then excreted by the kidneys. The same factor is the explanation for its zero calorie content.
● Does not spoil the teeth.
● Erythritol, unlike sugar, does not harbor harmful bacteria in the mouth. Therefore, it does not cause tooth decay.
● Does not affect blood sugar, that is, it has a zero glycemic index. We have already written about this above, but we consider it necessary to repeat it once more in order to draw your attention to such an important fact.

Possible contraindications and harm of erythritol

If the recommended daily allowance is exceeded, a laxative effect may occur. Therefore, it is necessary to remember that in everything you need to know when to stop. So men are recommended to consume no more than 0.66 g / kg of body weight, and women – no more than 0.8 g / kg.

Home use of erythritol

Erythritol is widely used in the food and cosmetic industries, as well as in medicine. It is, for example, added to chewing gums and toothpastes. At home, they can be safely sweetened with tea or coffee, used in the preparation of ice cream and other desserts, and added to baked goods.
Erythritol will add sweetness to homemade yoghurts or handcrafted sweets, biscuits and preserves. In other words, wherever you could use regular sugar, you can use erythritol.

OUTPUT

Today, erythritol can be safely called the best sugar substitute.

Use of erythritol:

● Erythritol is a natural product based on environmentally friendly technologies.
● Does not contain calories, therefore it is not harmful to the figure and is suitable for people with diabetes.
● Prevents tooth decay.
● Does not interfere with the work of intestinal microflora.

Diabetes school – Nutrition for diabetes

We will be happy to help you with any additional diabetes questions. Here you can study the existing database of questions and answers from other people, or ask your question to a specialist.

  • Frequently Asked Questions
  • Ask your question
  • 1.

  • 2.
  • 3.

  • 4.

  • 5.

  • 6.

  • 7.

  • eight.
  • nine.

    Is it possible to use sugar substitutes for diabetes mellitus?

    Exclude products containing fructose, xylitol, sorbitol. Sweeteners containing saccharin, aspartame, sucralose, acesulfame, cyclamate and others belonging to the non-nutritive group can be used in diabetes mellitus.
    Learn more about diabetes nutrition.

  • ten.

    I can’t drink unsweetened tea, what can I use instead of sugar?

    There are two types of artificial sweeteners – actual sweeteners (containing calories) and sweeteners (containing no calories).

    Sweeteners include fructose, xylitol, sorbitol. They increase blood glucose levels and are undesirable in type 2 diabetes.They are often added to so-called “diabetic” foods.

    Sweeteners include saccharin, aspartame, sucralose, acesulfame, cyclamate and others. They do not raise blood glucose levels and can be used to enhance the taste of your food.

    Learn more about diabetes nutrition.

List of sources used:

  • Dedov I.I. Diabetes mellitus / Dedov I.I., Shestakova M.V. – Moscow: Universum Publishing, 2003 .– 454 p.
  • Surkova E. V. Diabetes mellitus type 2. A guide for people with diabetes / Surkova E.V., Mayorov A.Yu., Melnikova O.G. – Moscow: Institute of Health Management Problems, 2009. – 120 p.
  • Dedov I. I. Education of patients with diabetes mellitus / Dedov I. I., Antsiferov M. B., Galstyan G. R., Mayorov A. Yu., Surkova E. V. – M.: Bereg, 1999 .– 304 with.
  • Algorithms for specialized medical care for patients with diabetes mellitus / Edited by I.I. Dedova, M.V. Shestakova, A. Yu. Mayorov. – 8th edition. – M .: UP PRINT; 2017.
  • Shtandl E. Big reference book on diabetes (translated from German) / Shtandl E., Menert H. – M .: Interexpert, 2002. – 400 p.
  • Type 2 diabetes. Basics. Third edition. International Diabetes Center at Park Nicollet, 2010 .– Sweetbee, 2008 .– 217 p.

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