All about Sweeteners
This month our good friend Jaz Batchelor writes about sweeteners.
Sweeteners come in many different and very complicated forms, you may have seen "Stevia" on your supermarket shelves or people using "Equal" sachets in their coffees. They're a replacement for natural sugars and generally have minimal kilojoules which contributes to weight loss and adds to their appeal. However, sweeteners are a complicated ingredient and studies done aren't in depth enough to rule out whether they're safe or not to consume.
Firstly, lets discuss a few concerns surrounding sweeteners. They can alter your tastebuds due to the intense sweetness and leave your food tasting bland and cause oversensitivity to sweetness, did you know that they're almost one hundred times sweeter than natural sugar?
They're also highly addictive with a study performed on rats who were given both cocaine and oral saccharine (a common artificial sweetener) and most chose the saccharin. Studies have also shown that there may be a link to cancer. Yet, the general census determined that a cancer risk was ruled out, however, said studies were staged with very small amounts of sweetener, that aren't comparable to the amount added to our food and drinks so the link to cancer cannot be completely ruled out. Therefore, more studies need to be performed to determine the link between sweetener consumption and sweeteners. Additionally, there has also been a link to increased type 2 diabetes, but once again, more studies need to be carried out.
But is the information surrounding sweeteners all bad? Like anything in our world, we need moderation. Sweetener can replace natural sugars for diabetes management, as they do not raise blood glucose levels and contribute to weight loss. However, this does not mean you have a pass to drink 4 diet soft drinks and think everything will be fine. As said previously, moderation is key! Opting for sugar free treats every now and again is a more appropriate option.
Sweeteners can also be helpful with diabetes management as they do not contribute to carbohydrate intake. This means that those with diabetes may be able to manage their glucose levels easier and reduce bodyweight. Furthermore, the FDA approved the safety of sweeteners for those with diabetes.
In summary, the studies and information surrounding sweeteners are still up in the air for the public. Although, for those diagnosed with diabetes, they can be a good alternative to natural sugars as they do not contribute to blood glucose and can assist in weight management. It is also important to consume sugar free foods in moderation.
For a sugar free alternative, the Slim Secrets Chocolate Bar range is a great snack that won't raise your glucose levels and satisfies the taste buds! Check them out on the Diabetes Meals Online Website.