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Health risk – artificial sweeteners

sweetener

Artificial sweeteners, taken by many people as a substitute to sugar, are toxic and a danger to your health!

Just a few days ago Nature magazine issued the results of another study, suggesting that artificial sweeteners may contribute, rather than alleviating obesity-related metabolic conditions.

Quoting the Weizmann Institute of Science in Israel, the research finds that differences in gut microbes may explain why some people can handle artificial sweeteners just fine while in an unknown percentage of others the sweeteners lead to diabetes.

Taken together, the data indicate that artificial sweeteners “may contribute to, rather than alleviate, obesity-related metabolic conditions, by altering the composition and function of bacterial populations in the gut,” Cathryn Nagler and Taylor Feehley of the pathology department at the University of Chicago said in a journal commentary.

Obesity and the related health risks including diabetes, cancer and high blood pressure are becoming a global problem because of what we eat and drink. Take this: One fourth of a bottle of ketchup is pure sugar. A spoonful of classic mayonnaise, for example, adds an extra 100 calories and 10 grams of fat to whatever you mix it with.

In addition a lot of people are unaware that their sugar intake can be massive if they have a habit of drinking sodas or so-called “energy drinks”. A classic can of coke contains the equivalent of about ten teaspoons of sugar. A 2007 study revealed that one or more sodas a day increased the risk of obesity by 31 per cent and the risk of metabolic syndrome by 44 per cent. Metabolic syndrome is defined by having at least three of the following: abdominal obesity, insulin resistance, high blood pressure or elevated trigloerides.

But that is only part of the problem. German consumer protection organisations have found that up to 70 different types of artificial sweeteners are finding their way into processed foods you buy in the supermarket.

We are having a great problem in telling our teenage son to avoid bringing home a certain “energy drink”. The food industry is very much aware that they have to catch consumers at a young age, making them dependent on the “sweet taste”. I see only a solution in effective health legislation, limiting the sugar content and artificial sweeteners in food.

Obesity is caused when the body has a higher energy intake than it can utilise. An athlete doing a daily run of about 30 kilometres would have no problem getting rid of the excess calories. The problem is that most of us have desk-bound jobs and too little exercise.

So what can be an immediate solution? Just try and replace the sodas with good water for a couple of weeks and see how much weight you lose. You can spice up the water with lemon, spices, apple chips or mint leaves – really tasty!

Try and do more of your own cooking with fresh produce from your own region. There is a saying that you are what you eat. Your mood and how you feel in your body is determined largely by what food you eat.

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