I stopped recommending all artificial sweeteners over the past several years, mostly due to the adverse reactions I've had, but others have had as well. I've been told by several clients, with GI disorders, that they cannot tolerate Splenda. Yes many RDs will say it's considered safe, or GRAS- 'Generally Recommended as Safe' but, the latest research published in the Journal of Toxicology and Environmental Health may offer new evidence that Sucralose, also know as Splenda, is not.
Popular Artificial Sweetener Not So Sweet
16 June 2014 Taylor & Francis
One of the active ingredients in a popular artificial sweetener could have the potential to limit the impact of therapeutic drugs, reduce the number and balance of beneficial bacteria in the gut and alter hormone secretion, according to an article published in Journal of Toxicology and Environmental Health, Part A: Current Issues.
Authored by Susan Schiffman and her colleagues, the article details an experiment involving a popular artificial sweetener, which is comprised of the high-potency sucralose (1.1%) and the fillers maltodextrin and glucose. [s1]
The study involved an experiment using Sprague-Dawley rats that were administered the artificial sweetener over a 12-week period. Following a bacterial analysis of the rats’ fecal samples and measurement of fecal pH, the article concluded that artificial sweetener resulted in various adverse effects in the rats, including:
-Reduction in beneficial fecal microflora
-Increased fecal pH
- Enhanced expression levels of P-gp, CYP3A4,and CYP2D1, which are known to limit the bioavailability of orally administered drugs
“At concentrations typically used in foods and drinks, sucralose suppresses beneficial bacteria in the gastrointestinal tract with less effect on pathogenic bacteria,” article co-author Susan Schiffman, Ph.D said. “Most consumers are unaware of these effects because no warning label appears on products containing sucralose.” Schiffman also said went onto saythat the change in balance of gastrointestinal bacteria has been associated with weight gain and obesity. At elevated levels, sucralose also damages DNA. These biological effects occur at the levels of sucralose currently approved by regulatory agencies for use in the food supply.
Thanks for your question Rose May. I have in the past suggested that Truvia or Pruvia might be a good substitute for sugar, but have now changed my mind, after reading about possible adverse reactions.
Really, the whole idea of artificial sweeteners or saccharine, was invented to help diabetics avoid refined sugar and insulin needs. Surprisingly though, back in the '60s, women who wanted to reduce caloric intake for weight-loss drove the market higher than the purpose saccharine was developed. When pharmaceutical companies realized there was such a large demand for artificial sweeteners many rushed products to the market. Unfortunately over the years, we've learned many of these artificial sweeteners are worse than sugar for our health. I feel we've all been duped by many of these companies, now accused of pushing approval through the FDA with very lax GRAS and conflict of interest within the approval process.
My recommendations now are to use as little sugar as possible, eat fruit for that sweet tooth and keep added sugars to no more than 25 grams a day, which equals around 6 teaspoons a day. Less is more in this case.
Tips for watching sugar:
1) read the label of ALL packaged foods
2) keep track daily on a food log.
3) Watch-out for hidden sugars in condiments, breads, spaghetti sauce, granola bars, protein bars, sports drinks, cereals, juice and yogurts. Some yogurts are worse than ice cream.
Once you train yourself to read the nutrition facts label and ingredient lists, you're on your way.
Remember there are approximately 4 grams of sugar to a teaspoon.
Why I don't recommend Splenda
04 Mar 2015 16:50 #10152