The American Diabetes Association claims that when people crave for something sweet, they most commonly turn to foods and drinks full of artificial sweeteners. These sweeteners are extremely harmful in the case of diabetes.
Portuguese researchers have found that artificial sweeteners like aspartame are extremely dangerous for our health and have negative effects on the response to glucose of the body, which can lead to fatal consequences.
This study involved 27 participants who received Splenda, acesulfame K or a placebo pill.
The ones who were given artificial sweetener experienced adverse side-effects to the sweeteners within two weeks, as the GLP-1 peptide levels were reduced, whose role is to control the amount of glucose released in the bloodstream after a meal.
This is concerning, according to Richard Young, a professor from the Adelaide University, adding that this might be one of the leading causes of the diabetes epidemic.
Yet, this is not the first time scientists warn about the effects of aspartame, and its link with diabetes. One study found a relationship between artificial sweeteners and obesity as well.
Many soda drinks contain sucralose, which is a harmful artificial sweetener that leads to fat accumulation in the tissues and thus harms the metabolic function.
When tested on stem cells from human fat, it elevated the genes linked to inflammation and fat production. Dr. Sabyasachi Sen, the leading authors of this study claims that this can be more detrimental to obese people, but is a serious threat that should concern the medical community.
Another Israeli study analyzed the effects of artificial sweeteners on glucose production by altering the gut microbiota. Researchers fed mice with artificial sweeteners for 11 weeks, after which they started showing the initial signs of glucose intolerance, as a result of the altered gut bacteria.
The results were the same in the case of humans as well, so artificial sweeteners were found to elevate the risk of diabetes.
The work by Dr. Max Nieuwdorp published recently is an attempt to reverse type 2 diabetes – fecal transplantations in 250 participants, all of which experienced positive effects, which provided evidence that diabetes can be treated by changing the composition of gut bacteria.
The mismatch between the taste of artificial sweeteners and the calories disrupt the metabolism, as shown in a study conducted at Yale University.
Professor Dana Small explains that our bodies react to the high-calorie content and the sweet taste. They receive energy from unnatural, and unknown sources.
The brain is satisfied when the sweetness of a drink matches its calories, and the mismatch leads to cravings and higher obesity and diabetes risk.
The brain releases dopamine when we consume sweet drinks and foods, as well as leptin, a hormone that regulates cravings and sends a signal of satiety to the brain. When this connection is disrupted, we start craving and gaining weight.
Dr. Harlan Krumholz, a renowned cardiologist was addicted to soda drinks but has seen the damage they cause on our bodies, and he now warns others to avoid them, as they are highly dangerous and affect the brain, and cause cravings and obesity.
A Yale study found that artificial sweeteners are not inert, but they affect the metabolic function and energy balance, and have negative consequences on the microbiota, cognitive process, and metabolic hormone secretion.
Even though it can be very difficult to stay away from these drinks that contain artificial sweeteners, as they are addictive, you must do your best to ditch them completely. Try some natural alternatives like lemon water and stevia, which prevent cravings and blood sugar spikes.