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Sugar Substitutes...Do I or don't I?

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Old 05-04-2013, 04:29 PM   #16
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Have you thought of cutting out the sugar altogether? I was a 2-3 diet coke a day drinker and 1-2 pkts splenda every morning in my coffee. I eat healthy and whole foods but this was my one "chemical" that I didn't care about. I am "prediabetic" and the Dr. encouraged me to switch from sugar to splenda.

Well, this last December we had a snowstorm and I didn't leave the house for ten days. In that time I didn't have one soda and had coffee with cream only. I didn't have a choice.... but it was the best thing that could have happened.

Going cold turkey was awful at first but... I lost 11 pounds and in that time frame my headaches and heartburn disappeared completely. I was shocked. I went back to work a few days later and had a diet coke (first one in 3 weeks by then) immediately had a headache and stomach cramps again.

For a long time I just assumed that was part of the job/life whatever... It is very clearly linked to sugar substitutes.

I now enjoy my coffee with cream only and the benefit is I drink a limited amount, I am satisfied with 2 cups instead of 6. I drink water constantly instead of soda...

SO, not really what you were asking but maybe considering giving it up completely for your health. See how you feel...
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Old 05-04-2013, 08:46 PM   #17
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I guess I'm the odd one out of the bunch, lol. I've used artificial sweeteners my whole life and so far haven't had any adverse effects, including the whole "they stimulate your appetite" thing. They don't "stimulate" anything for me. They just make my food/drinks taste better without adding the calories. I guess I kinda have one of those "guts of steal" things -- my body can handle consuming just about anything without any ill effects. If this is you, and you don't have problems with consuming it, then I don't see why you shouldn't carry on as you are. If you start having ill effects from it though, then of course, limit your consumption or cut it out completely, just like you would anything else that your body didn't agree with.
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Old 05-06-2013, 12:09 PM   #18
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I quit using Equal a few months ago & I don't have those intense sugar cravings nearly as much as I used to. I think it definitely made my body act just the way refined, white sugar would, which is so so so bad for me especially with my insulin resistance. (Also, I think my Native American heritage lends a particular susceptibility to sugar addiction & insulin resistance, must remember to research that.)

I love using Stevia & organic coconut sugar, or raw honey. Stevia doesn't taste weird to me at all, I put it in my coffee & oatmeal pretty much every morning.
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Old 05-11-2013, 02:32 PM   #19
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I used to drink diet Coke (almost a liter every 2 days.. bad, I know) and always used Splenda or Equal in my coffee. I was having terrible migraines during that time. I haven't had aspartame in 3 months now and my headaches are few and far in between. I'm not sure if stevia is a good sugar substitute if you're diabetic but it'd be worth looking into.
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Old 05-29-2013, 10:20 AM   #20
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Honestly, I don't like non-natural sweeteners. I grew up using domino...before this trend. But now knowing about these things... I use the most natural thing I can use for sugar...HONEY. I put it would in my teas. If I have to use sugar in a recipe I use that or normal white sugar... I am Leary of "sugar derived from a leaf"...not truly sugar....
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Old 06-07-2013, 02:14 PM   #21
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My two cents' worth -

My mom was Type 1 diabetic so we always had stuff with artificial sweetener available for her and regular sugared stuff for Dad and me. When I was a teenager and throughout my 30s and into my 40s I would switch back and forth with using artificial sweeteners vs. sugar. And the switch from sugar to artificial would be nasty until I accustomed to the taste. Or switching back at first sugar would seem syrupy and sticky.

But in my 40s and now my early-50s I came down on the side that the artificial sweeteners are just too . . . artificial to be good for you. Sure, there's controversy depending on which study you read, and I can't claim I avoid all bad chemicals in foods though I definitely include more organic stuff that I did in the past.

I just don't want to be the human guinea pig when there's a choice to avoid it, and with sweeteners the choice is easy enough to implement. One simply avoids the diet sodas, gelatins, yogurts, whatever product it is. And reads the labels for the terms such as aspartame or sucralose (which manufacturers can sneak into foods where you wouldn't expect it - I saw sucralose the other day as an ingredient in bagels of all things).

Also, I have transitioned with regard to beverages to unsweetened. I will use stevia on occasion but here lately I haven't bothered with it. I drink unsweetened green tea most of the time, take my coffee black, and don't buy soda - I've gotten past the point where I miss it.

When I was young I would never dream of having a savory meal without a sweet drink (soda, or sugared or sweetened tea) but now I can drink plain tea or even water and it's okay. You have to know I am a picky eater and this was a big deal for me, but I'm glad I was able to become more flexible in this area.
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Old 06-07-2013, 11:56 PM   #22
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I have stopped using splenda altogether and now use stevia in the raw.
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Old 06-11-2013, 04:48 PM   #23
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I cut sugar or sweetner in my tea completely, occassionally have a diet coke.

To be honest i'm pretty happy with sugar free coffee etc, if i want something sweet i'll opt for the full fat/sugar option. I found it hard at first but quickly became accustomed to it, milk now tastes quite sweet by itself.

As to whether sweetner is harmful i'm not sure. My father is a diabetic whos used sweetners etc for years, he quit them recently and seems convinced his insulin/glucose levels are more stable.

I quit because i was trying to wean myself of sugar, dont think i had any health problems with any sweetners
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Old 06-20-2013, 03:28 PM   #24
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I gave up diet soda 3 months ago. I feel so much better and hopefully will reap the benefits of it. I do drink one regular can of coke daily. Otherwise it's water or unsweetened ice tea. At first it was so hard, especially after 10 years of drinking it. Now I don't even miss it. For me the stopping point on aspartame, was that I would never let me children drink a diet soda so why should I? I see so many kids drinking them and it freaks me out.
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Old 06-25-2013, 01:04 AM   #25
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I've gone off and on with the sweeteners... I mostly use splenda since that seems to be the "safer" one of the bunch. For me, if having a tea or coffee or a food sweetened with a packet of splenda means not eating a piece of cake, cookie, etc... then I think the trade off is worth it.... both probably have ingredients that aren't so good for me, but it just seems like the sweetener will be the lesser of the evils since it won't make me gain weight.

There is also a sweetener out called xylitol It's supposed to be natural and actually good for you and your mouth/teeth by killing any bacteria and preventing it from sticking to your teeth. This one does have some calories in it but is supposed to be safe for diabetics.

I have given up diet soda though mostly because of all the other chemicals in it...I read it also damages your bones and teeth in the long run too. I can say my teeth look, feel and are so much healthier thanks to giving up the soda, and that's saying alot because I'm still a hardcore coffee and tea drinker. I think it's been going on almost a year since I've had soda! Now if I do drink it tastes weird... I don't miss it at all.

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Old 07-09-2013, 07:20 PM   #26
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I've gone on and off artificial sweeteners and I've waded through the research and the hype. I've concluded that all of them are safer than common household products many folks give no thought or would refuse to give up: cosmetics, fragrances, cleansers, disinfectants, sanitizers, plastic containers for storing or heating foods and beverages, teflon cookware (especially on high heat), trans fats in microwave popcorn, chemicals in paints, carpets, furniture, and fabric, prescription and nonprescription medications...

I rarely use personal fragrances and when I do, it's a body spray rather than perfume or cologne, as strong fragrances tend to trigger headaches and asthmatic symptoms for me. I don't wear makeup very often, and when I do, I choose mineral make-up (avoiding those I've found irritating).

I think many people would wade through radioactive waste before using artificial sweeteners simply because human perception is such that a risk factor is taken more seriously and assumed to Be a greater threat if it is swallowed rather than if it is absorbed through the skin or breathed in.

For myself, I'm satisfied with the choices I've made, including the choice to use artificial and natural sweeteners. Many sweeteners have a synergetic relationship with other sweeteners, in that the total becomes greater than the sum of it's parts.

It means you can often use less sweetener, if you use two or more sweeteners in combination than you would using the sweeteners separately.

I'm using less sweeteners than ever before, but I'm ok with the amounts I do use.



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Old 07-09-2013, 09:22 PM   #27
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kaplods (as always) makes some excellent points. I don't have any reaction issues with Splenda which is the only artificial sweetener I use. If I want some quick pickle that needs a hit of just sweet - I add a dash. I suppose I use it more like a seasoning. Right now my favorite marinade involves Bitter Orange Marmalade (just a tsp), fish sauce, lime juice and zest along with garlic and herbs. That bit of sugar in the marmalade is worth it for the flavor the sum of it imparts. Using artificial sweeteners as a food group I do not think is wise
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Old 07-12-2013, 10:40 PM   #28
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Anyone tried Stevia or Truvia before?
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Old 07-13-2013, 02:08 PM   #29
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When using Xylitol, one thing to be aware of is that relatively small amounts of it can kill dogs (ingestion of > 0.1 gram/kg). They don't metabolize it the same way that we do.

http://www.petpoisonhelpline.com/poison/xylitol/

http://www.petwellbeing.com/blog/xyl...erous-for-dogs

I have tried to get away from using artificial sweeteners in things. It did take a while, but now fruit is all I need to add to my plain yogurt and sweetened yogurt tastes gross to me. I still use a small amount of demerara sugar on my oatmeal, which is just somewhat less refined cane sugar. Haven't managed to give up the diet sodas yet, darn it.

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Old 07-15-2013, 12:14 PM   #30
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DietLisa View Post
Anyone tried Stevia or Truvia before?
Yes, Truvia is what I use. My DH is an obsessive researcher and he tells me as far as sweetners go, it's the most natural and safe and so that's what we use.
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