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Can someone give me quick run down on artificial sugars

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Old 07-23-2011, 11:48 PM   #1
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Default Can someone give me quick run down on artificial sugars

So how does it work? Which ones are "allowed" "not allowed" I use Stevia for baking and in my Iced Coffee. I also have the Crystal Light packets but no more than one per day. What is the deal with Splenda, Aspartame, Sucralose, etc, etc which ones to watch for in products and which ones are okay?

My coach told me Diet Pop was newly being allowed to the diet but I am not drinking it yet just feeling very tempted because she told me that. If so, would one be better than another in the Diet Pop world? -this is esp where knowing which sweeteners are ok comes in- Thank you!
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Old 07-24-2011, 01:25 AM   #2
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You're going to get alot of opinions on the topic. I've seen flame wars erupt on health websites over the issue.

I'm someone who is conscientious of what I put into my body, so I thoroughly research any chemicals in food and do not trust everything I read, or any "official" decisions. Generally speaking, the rule is the fewer the better.

That said, aspartame is on my absolutely not ever list. Therefore, I also don't drink soda which is fine too because the other chemicals in diet soda have bad effects on the body too (phosphoric acid leeches calcium from teeth and bones AND neutralizes stomach acid which is necessary in the absorption of calcium from food, so you're screwed both ways.) Aspartame is a neurotoxin, and long story short, kills brains cells, is linked to depression, memory problems, headaches, and a whole slew of other problems that are just numerous to list. I used to drink diet soda alot, and then I cut back to maybe 2 cans a day because I was tired of the gas and bloating from the carbonation, not to mention the perpetual dehydration that soda promotes. Then I read up on aspartame because I was having daily headaches with no known cause. So I stopped drinking soda, and in the 3 or 4 days I was in withdrawal I got migraines and I could not think at all. I put the remote control in the fridge door, I left groceries in the car, I kept losing things and mixing things up, forgot appointments and tasks, and when people were talking to me I just couldn't focus. It was like there was this layer of cotton candy between me and the rest of the world. I felt just plain crappy too and I was so irritable. The fog started lifting in 3 or 4 days and I vowed never to touch that stuff again. I don't have daily headaches anymore, either. I had a really bad experience 10 years ago with diet coke that had been stored in a hot garage. I had the worst stomach pain ever and even went to the ER fearing gallstones. The ER doctor found nothing. After the doctor asked me about changes in my diet, I started thinking about it, and decided the only difference was in drinking these sodas because I had visited my grandpa everyday that week and he gave me a diet soda with a glass of ice everytime I went to his house. I quit drinking them and my stomach pains stopped. So after all my experience and research, I am very adamant about this one.

Saccharin -- I use saccharin with Stevia in my iced tea -- the saccharin seems to take away the bitter aftertaste of Stevia. I limit it, but I've not found any truly condemning evidence against it except that like all artificial sweeteners, it confuses your body and still causes the release of insulin. Google "cephalic phase response" for more on that. "Large amounts" is considered carcinogenic, and in the study that was done that found that, lab rats were fed 600 times the typical amount a human would consume in one day and they ended up with bladder cancer. The unanswered question is how much can YOUR body tolerate and how does your body store or process this chemical? Is is possible it can build up to dangerous amounts? What I have experienced is that I need more and more to get the same sweetness. So I figure this one is really confusing my brain and taste receptors. Which can't be a good thing. I have to take myself off of it at regular intervals to get rid of the tolerance. I would like to eventually just stop entirely.

Splenda -- I like that this one is versatile, and it's the only one I bake with besides xylitol. I don't like the taste of saccharin in my coffee, deserts or baked goods, so that's where I use Splenda when I actually do use it. Again, I make an effort to limit its use. There's conflicting studies and with any chemical, I err on the side of caution. If you have a sensitivity to the sucralose molecule, you can have side effects like migraines, skin rashes, dizziness, edema, diarrhea, etc. I have a family member who has a PhD in pharmacology and works in the industry and minor amounts of Splenda is all she will eat. You can take that for what it's worth.

Xylitol -- for the rare sugar free cake or brownie, I use this or a combo of this and Splenda. It's a sugar alcohol and while your body doesn't process it, and it doesn't appear to have any dangers associated with it unless you're a dog. It is fatal to them so do not feed anything containing xylitol to dogs. Bloating and diarrhea are common with excess use. It's used in some toothpastes because it helps prevent cavities. It does not create a cephalic phase response, and neither does the other sugar alcohols.

Stevia is an herb that has been used for centuries by natives of South America with no ill effects, and Japan has been using it for nearly 40 years with no adverse effects reported. Numerous toxicity tests have been performed and nothing has come of those. Same with studies done on potential carcinogenic effects. Stevia is my personal favorite, as I've not noticed any effects whatsoever, including digestive discomforts and I'm reassured by it's very long, safe history.
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Old 07-24-2011, 01:31 AM   #3
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Mountaingirl, what an awesome response. I used to not like splenda but now that I'm not drinking tea with sugar I love splenda in my tea (apparently I just had to get used to it, something I knew but didn't feel like actually 'DOING" until now). Now I'm trying to use Stevia but really do find it has a really bitter taste. I really think it's a matter of getting used to it much like the splenda, so once I'm out of splenda I will have no choices.

How often do you use Saccharin to fight the stevia bitterness?

Carla

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Old 07-24-2011, 09:00 AM   #4
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Great information!! Thanks so much for that!!!
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Old 07-24-2011, 12:02 PM   #5
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Yes, thank you so much for taking the time to do that its just what I wanted to know and also some very eye opening information.
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Old 07-24-2011, 12:06 PM   #6
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as far as IP goes, we are not supposed to consume aspartame according to my coach.
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Old 07-24-2011, 12:36 PM   #7
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My coach told me to have Crystal Light packets but I really want to drop Aspartame now! Is there anything similar that uses something else? It really helps me avoid a snack when I can have that "sweet" drink "treat" I love the raspberry lemonade and always use the sunrise orange in my vanilla pudding for an orange julias drink!
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Old 07-24-2011, 12:37 PM   #8
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Carla, I use one packet of saccharin per 24oz glass of iced tea and two packets of Stevia. At least until I start getting a tolerance and then it can go to 2 or 3 packets of saccharin to get the same sweetness, which is when I just stop it altogether for awhile.

Another option if you really can't get over the bitter taste is using Truvia or Purevia products. They add Erythritol, a sugar alcohol, to the isolated sweet chemical in Stevia called Rebaudioside A. It really cuts down on the bitter taste alot, but it's not a cheap option. I pay about $5 for a box of 80 packets. By comparison, I used to pay $11 at Costco for a box of 1,000 packets of saccharin or store brand Splenda. Sugar alcohols are of course known for their side effects on the digestive system, but after a few days of use my body got used to it and the gas went away. I don't get it at all anymore. In my experience, some sugar alcohols produce unwanted side effects worse than others -- xylitol and erythritol have been very gentle compared to other popular sugar alcohols, and the differences have been documented almost on a scale of least problematic to most problematic.

Bellamack, I've seen "IP" used around here before -- I'm curious what that is?
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Old 01-25-2013, 12:25 AM   #9
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Here's a link to the Sweet 'N Low website for reference:
http://www.sweetnlow.org/faqs/health.html#healthfaq07
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Old 01-25-2013, 07:03 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mountaingirl81 View Post
Bellamack, I've seen "IP" used around here before -- I'm curious what that is?
Mountaingirl: your response is in the Ideal Protein (IP) Diet forum
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Old 01-25-2013, 10:06 AM   #11
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Where does sucralose fit into all this? I see it in the ingredients of a lot of IP products and it makes me a little nervous!
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Old 01-25-2013, 10:11 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cleary View Post
Where does sucralose fit into all this? I see it in the ingredients of a lot of IP products and it makes me a little nervous!
It's in a lot of the IP products because it is pretty safe to use - it doesn't elicit much of a glycemic response in the body and isn't harmful the way aspartame is. But as with anything that is "zero carb", there are always trace carbs - so limit yourself to about 6 servings of any "extras" per day not counting what is in the IP packets.
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Old 01-25-2013, 11:39 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ishbel View Post
Now I'm trying to use Stevia but really do find it has a really bitter taste.

Ishbel, on Stevia, I've found I've hated some brands, and loved others, so maybe try some different brands. I use NuNaturals Nustevia Alcohol Free Stevia (liquid), I don't find it bitter at all. I've tired Sweet Leaf liquid, but I"m not a fan of it (but others are).
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