Water and Artificial Sweeteners


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As I was commenting on another blog it brought me to think about my water intake. I don't like drinking water and I am trying my best to drink more. The best way I have come up with is using Crystal Light. Crystal Light is a brand of different flavors of artificially sweetened powders that one puts in water to give it flavor. Its like Kool Aid but more healthier for you because its not real sugar. 

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If it's getting someone that doesn't drink water to drink more than its better than nothing. The artificial flavors that are in the beverage mix are what some people think are the problem with beverage mixers. One of the artificial sweeteners I use is Equal, which is Aspartame and is 200 times sweeter than regular sugar. Some people say that Aspartame causes cancer. Splenda is another artificial sweetener I use and gives the worst after taste in my opinion but I have gotten used to it. It is Sucralose and is 600 times sweeter than regular sugar. I have also tried a novel sweetener Stevia Extracts, which is Truvia. Stevia is a plant that comes from the rainforest of Paraguay. It is up to 300 times sweeter than regular sugar and is claims that it is natural (a lot of artificial sweeteners claim they are natural and are really not). 

images-1.jpegThe positives of artificial sugars is that they cause no tooth decay or cavities. images.jpegThey help with weight control and are good for people with diabetes. There are no sound scientific evidence that any artificial sweetener used in the U.S causes cancer or is harmful, according the National Cancer Institute and other health agencies.

So back to whether artificial sweeteners take away from the nutrients. The evidence shows that it might not be as harmful as people think. I obviously still know and believe that nothing is better than pure water but added flavor is okay too!

 http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/artificial-sweeteners/MY00073

http://www.everydiet.org/1001/sugar-and-artificial-sugar-facts

7 Comments

This blog put forth the exact opposite of what I thought and that is that fake sugars are potentially even worse for you than normal sugar. I was almost convinced when I finished reading that you are right, but I had to research more. First result was the same information that you promoted! (http://www.time.com/time/health/article/0,8599,1931116,00.html) Great blog.

My aunt works in the nutrition department here at Penn State and insists on artificial sweeteners over sugar. She says that splenda is the best, and to get used to the after taste because it is healthier than sweeteners like equal. She also insists that I drink diet soda over regular (if I have to drink soda at all- she is firm believer soft drinks are the devil) because regular soda has such outrageous amounts of sugar in it.

While I couldn't find a good answer, my question is how artificial sweeters can be better for you when sugar is a much more natural substance. I think more studies need to be done on this topic before we have a clear answer.

I definitely believe that reducing pure sugar intake will also reduce cravings for sugar. We know sugar is bad. It has absolutely no nutritive value whatsoever and adds empty calories. It spikes your cholesterol level, depresses your immune system, rots your teeth, and makes the body ripe for all kinds of bacterial infections. I wish it weren’t true because I LOVE sugar, but we are a nation of obese addicts with terrible health and we should try to reduce our sugar intake as much as possible. Thanks for explaining the benefits of sweeteners because they are a much better alternative.

I also have problems with drinking water. I drink water with crystal lights which I believe the best choice I can make. I do not have problems with the artificial tastes, but health issue is another thing. I came across with the article tht scientist and engineer Gilbert V. Levin might have found the better replacement molecule. He claimed "tagatose, is in fact a sugar that occurs naturally, in minute quantities, in milk and beets"(NYtimes) Also, some researchers found that it could work as a cure for diabetes too. He could not manufacture it due to its the cost. However, if this guy can find a way to mass produce his molecule at plausible cost, I want to buy it instead of the current sweetners! (http://well.blogs.nytimes.com/2012/06/11/artificial-sweeteners-the-challenges-of-tricking-the-taste-buds/)

Wow! I actually did not know that artificial sweetener's we're unhealthier then regular sugar. For some reason I always automatically assumed Equal was healthier, maybe because of its packet form. Although it is healthy for you to drink regular water by itself, I don't think that it will harm you too much if you add a little flavoring to your cup of water. But I would suggest it to be a once in a while thing. No bad habit that is done consistently is good. You should think about switching things up. Drink regular water on one day and drink water mixed with artificial flavoring on another. You can even try using lemons when you drink your water as well, its healthy.

Joseph- Thanks!

Emily - Thats a good point about how can something that is natural be so bad for you. I wonder that too. I actually started off first using Splenda but started to try other things but since you said that I will go back to Splenda. And your aunt is right soda is the devil, I don't drink it at all anymore. Thanks for the advice!

Mayra- Your welcome!

Ga Hee- I am open to trying new things if its healthier!

Ejiro- Thats a good idea. I have tried to drink one water bottle a day but it never works out. I think I should be more realistic with myself and drink a water bottle every other day.

In my experience, I have always experienced headaches after consuming anything that contains an artificial sweetener. Although this could just be my imagination, I still avoid consuming products with artificial sugar and have focused simply on reducing my consumption of natural sugar. When deciding whether or not to consume artificial sweeteners, it is important to understand both the potential benefits and detriments. This page on the Mayo Clinic's website was a comprehensive way to compare the costs and benefits: http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/artificial-sweeteners/MY00073. Ultimately, "there's no sound scientific evidence that any of the artificial sweeteners approved for use in the U.S. cause cancer or other serious health problems," although it is important to consider that artificial sweeteners are relatively new on the market.

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