Sucralose is a popular sweetener that is often referred to as Splenda. Many people use sucralose in place of sugar to help them cut calories or better manage diabetes. You may be surprised to find out that sucralose is not all it’s cracked up to be-in fact, here are 5 reasons why you should avoid it.
#1. Sucralose Affects Blood Sugar
One reason diabetics enjoy sucralose is because they believe it will help them better manage their blood sugar. However, a study performed on 17 severely obese patients showed that sucralose raised their blood sugar levels by 14% and their insulin levels by 20%. Participants in this study did not regularly consume artificial sweeteners, leaving researchers to believe that sucralose has a more profound effect on people who do not use it often.
#2. Molecular Structure Changes when Heated
Sucralose is often used in recipes in place of sugar, yet there is evidence that suggests the molecular structure of sucralose changes when it heats up. Heating sucralose has the potential to produce chloropropanols, which are harmful substances that increase your risk of cancer. Chloropropanols are more prevalent when sucralose is heated in conjunction with glycerol, a sweet, syrupy liquid used in commercial baking operations.
#3. Can Cause Gastrointestinal Problems
As study published in the Journal of Toxicology and Environmental Health in 2008 showed that laboratory rats that were given large amounts of sucralose saw a decrease in helpful bacteria in their digestive tracts. This decrease continued for 12 weeks after the study was concluded. Although a similar study has yet to be performed on humans, the fact that sucralose had such a profound effect in rats is enough for anyone who already suffers from digestive problems to take notice.
#4. Not Effective for Weight Loss
Many people believe consuming artificial sweeteners such as sucralose in place of sugar will help them lose weight; however, medical research shows otherwise. Random controlled trials performed at the Center for Epidemiology in Chicago, IL showed that patients who consume artificial sweeteners lose an average of only 1.7 pounds. Other studies have shown little or no effect, while others claim artificial sweeteners can actually raise body mass index. As such, the weight loss benefits are minimal at best. Read about the harmful effects of diet soda here.
#5. Limits Drug Absorption
According to Dr. Susan Schiffman of North Carolina State University, drinking two diet sodas per day can affect drug absorption. She claims that this might cause life-saving therapeutic drugs for treating cancer and heart disease to become less effective. A study performed at Duke University also showed that sucralose affected levels of P-glycoprotein in the body, a substance that can block the effects of cancer-fighting drugs such as chemotherapy.
Although sucralose has been deemed safe by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), there are plenty of reasons to avoid using it. If you would like to lose weight, reducing your intake of natural sugar and eliminating junk food is preferred over using artificial sweeteners such as sucralose.