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Take a Closer Look at Studies about Artificial Sweeteners with Nutritionist Keri Gans

July 12, 2016
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Nutritionist Keri Gans has partnered with SPLENDA® Brand to shed light on common myths associated with sucralose, the sweetening ingredient in SPLENDA® Sweetener Products.

You Ask: We Answer

"What’s the deal with artificial sweeteners? I put a packet of SPLENDA® Sweetener in my coffee every day. Is that bad?"

Personally, I can’t drink an iced coffee without a packet of the low-calorie sweetener!

Honestly though, the answer is NO. Unfortunately, artificial sweeteners are one of those food items that get an awfully bad rap without conclusive scientific evidence to back it up. I think too many opinions get woven into statements about them and, professionally speaking, I go where the hard facts take me. Lately, there has been a lot of hyped-up chatter in the media about sucralose, the sweetening ingredient in SPLENDA® Sweetener Products, in regards to cancer and gut microflora.

So, here’s the real deal:

1. Cancer              

Collective scientific evidence strongly supports that sucralose is safe for everyone and does not cause cancer. Worldwide regulatory authorities, including the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, the European Food Safety Authority, Health Canada and the World Health Organization, have reviewed these studies and confirm that results show no link between sucralose and cancer. The U.S. National Cancer Institute also supports this conclusion. If that’s not convincing, I don’t know what is. In fact, I recently wrote an article for Fitness.com that I think really puts some perspective on how one recently-published study needs to be better examined.

2. Gut Microflora

There has been one study, let me repeat – one study, that concluded in mice and humans that artificial sweeteners, saccharin to be exact, altered the balance of the microbiome in the gut and led to glucose intolerance. The human portion consisted of only seven volunteers, who did not normally use artificial sweeteners, for a 1-week trial. Hmmm? Possible connection - maybe? Need a whole lot more research – definitely!

To confirm, this study never even investigated the potential for sucralose to affect gut microflora, and there have been studies using radiolabeled sucralose that show gut microflora do not metabolize sucralose, so there are no metabolic products to influence gut microflora growth.

So what’s the bottom line? I still feel 100% comfortable recommending SPLENDA® Sweeteners or any other artificial sweetener. Of course, we always need to look at our total diet and make sure it is balanced. Consuming TOO much of any one thing is never a great idea to begin with.

July 12, 2016  |  POSTED BY: Keri Gans, MS, RDN, CDN  |  IN: Debunk the Junk Science, Sugar Substitutes

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