Gum-a-holic. That was the best word to describe my love for this stuff.
I was surprised to find that Juicy Fruit, Bubbulicious, HubbaBubba, Excel, and Trident along with EVERY gum in the stinkin' store had aspartame!
What in tarnation is going on?!
It was time the Health Nutty Professor took a closer look.
NutraSweet, Sweet'n'Low, Equal, and Splenda are some of the most popular artificial sweeteners.
Artificial sweeteners are known as intense sweeteners because they are many times sweeter than regular sugar. Artificial sweeteners are attractive alternatives to sugar because they add virtually no calories to your diet. and you need only a fraction compared to the amount of sugar you would normally use for sweetness" (Mayoclinic.com).
So hey, that doesn't sound so bad. The article even goes on to say that artificial sweeteners can be good for weight control, and can be beneficial to those with diabetes because they don't raise blood sugar levels like normal sugar would (Mayoclinic.com). I've even noticed some sweeteners with added fibre, and antioxidants. But can this actually be healthy?
All of this just doesn't sit well with me.
Did you know that 92% of independent studies show that aspartame has potential for adverse effects? Evidence shows that an overload of aspartame can lead to headaches, depression, kidney problems, even cancer, diabetes, and obesity (Dr. John Briffa at Pubmed.com, Naturalsociety.com). Some have even gone further to say that consumption of aspartame may be a contributor to pre-term labour, spina bifida, and even autism, pointing out the risks in the ingestion of Methanol (NaturalNews.com). Apparently when we eat aspartame, we ingest chemicals our bodies can't break down. Aspartame converts into methanol (wood alcohol) which in high doses is a dangerous toxic chemical. (Naturalnews.com).
To top it off, I found another study that showed high dosages of sweeteners can cause "neurodegeneration," and even "behavioural disturbances" (Organicconsumerassociation.com).
Still wanna see if Juicy Fruit is gonna move ya? If it's gonna move ya anywhere, it might just be movin' ya to the hospital.
I was shocked to find what studies showed when it came to the carcinogenic effects of aspartame when fed to rats and even a more recent long-term study on humans in October 2012. The results are frightening. We're talking a major increase in tumours, lymphoma and leukemia. See more on the article, here.
The Journal of Toxicology and Environmental Health released this article stating, " there needs to be an urgent reexamination of the present guidelines on the use and consumption of aspartame" (Environmentalhealth.com).
So, why real sugar vs artificial sweetener?
Here's where The Health Nutty Professor sits on the topic:
I'm confused as to why Food Administrations in Canada, US, and Europe won't change their guidelines. Once again, I'm sure this is money related.
There are more negative articles on artificial sweeteners than positive ones. But all sugar (including artificial) can cause damage to our health if too much is consumed. I do believe that your body knows what to do when you eat "normal" sugar more than it does when we are tricking the body with artificial sweeteners. With the "fake" kind, our bodies don't understand what's going on, it's hard for the body to recognize, and therefore can't process it well.
So next time you want gum, sweetener in your coffee, boxed cereals, low calorie yogourt, or a diet soda, you may want to think again. Our family has chosen to stay away from all artificial sweeteners. That also includes sucralose, saccharin, acesulfame, and neotame.
Our goal: To eat nutritious sugars if we need a fix! Juice it up! Have an apple. Or an orange. Some dried fruit. A Medjool date. Easier said than done, I know. It's a constant work in progress....this journey to be healthier!
What's the thing you love that might be worth giving up?
The Health Nutty Professor hasn't chewed gum for almost 2 years.
And all I have left to say is........
Peace out, Trident.