artificial sweeteners

  1. Artificial sweeteners linked to weight gain

    This 'diet' switch can make you fatter

    It's the vicious cycle that leads to weight gain... obesity... and diabetes.

    And it could be CAUSED by trying to STOP it!

    Crazy, right?

    But new research shows how there's a right way and a wrong way to stop weight gain and prevent the onset of diabetes.

    And many people unknowingly pick the wrong one.

    Maybe you've done it yourself: You step on the scale, shriek at the number, and vow to make big changes.

    The first change many people make -- the ONLY change that some might make -- is to swap sugary drinks and snacks for low- and no-cal versions.

    Out with the Coke, in with the Diet Coke. Instead of sugar in your coffee or tea, you pick a packet: blue, yellow, or pink.

    And, of course, there are plenty of treats out there with many of those same substitutes.

    They certainly SOUND better, and you don't have to quite give up the things you love if you make the switch.

    But that's exactly what you SHOULDN'T do.

    Studies show that people who make the switch to no-cal chemical sweeteners often keep gaining weight. One study from a few years back found that just three large diet sodas a week can increase the risk of diabetes by as much as 60 percent.

    The new study shows one reason for it: Those fake sugars damage your body on a cellular level, altering the stem cells that normally turn into muscle, fat, bone, or cartilage.

    When exposed to an artificial sweetener -- in this case, the study used sucralose (a.k.a. Splenda) -- those cells suck up fat like a sponge.

    The more sweetener they're exposed to, the more fat they absorb.

    That leads to fat production -- exactly what you DON'T want -- and the study finds that the risk is highest in the cells of people who are already overweight or obese.

    In other words, the very people looking for help from fake sugars... the people who need to LOSE fat... could actually gain it.

    That's not all that they found, either.

    Tests on fat cells taken from human volunteers found that the sweetener also caused oxygenation inside the cell, which slows metabolism and can cause fat to build up.

    While this was a test on cells, it verifies what we've seen in studies on people, as artificial sweeteners often do just the opposite of what you expect, making it harder to lose weight and easier to gain it.

    If you're looking to drop a few pounds... or just looking to keep healthy... give up all of these sweeteners and get back to an all-natural diet low in all forms of sugar and sugar substitutes.

    And if you're looking for a sweet drink to replace your pop, try fruit-infused waters or club soda.

  2. Diet soda increases risk of obesity and disease

    Soda of any kind is disease waiting to happen

    If you want to lose weight and lower your disease risk, start by eliminating empty calories from your diet -- and no calories are emptier than the sugary ones you find in soda.

    But whatever you do, don't swap regular soda for diet -- because despite the name, "diet" soda could actually cause you to overeat and gain weight, according to a new look at a dozen studies published over the past five years.

    And if you don't need to lose weight, you still need to pass on diet soda -- because they can raise your risk of diabetes, heart disease and stroke even if you manage to keep slim and trim, according to the study.

    I know that sounds crazy. After all, diet soda has no calories.

    But that's exactly the problem -- because when your brain tastes anything sweet, it expects some calories to follow.

    When they don't arrive, it gets confused. And if it gets confused often enough, it can actually "forget" how to handle the calories from real sugar, according to animal studies included in the new review from Purdue University.

    This changes how your body releases hormones and insulin after eating or drinking -- and that, in turn, is a recipe for hunger, weight gain, disease and more.

    It helps explain why diet soda can double your risk of metabolic syndrome -- and why one study I told you about recently found that even a moderate diet soda habit can raise your diabetes risk by 60 percent.

    And that's not even getting into the specific risks of the no-calorie chemical sweeteners used in diet soft drinks, which have been linked to migraines, mood disorders, vision and hearing problems, heart conditions and even cancer.

    None of this means that sugary soda is a better option. Instead, pass on all soft drinks -- and if you need a little fizz, try some club soda.

    You can add a little fruit to infuse some natural flavor.

    Tea -- hot or iced -- is another great option, and green tea in particular can help you to lose weight and improve your overall health.

    And don't forget nature's original refreshment: water. Just be sure to drink water filtered by reverse osmosis or a distiller to remove contaminants and impurities.

  3. Dangers of diet soda and diabetes

    Diet soda isn't better than regular -- it's actually worse, as new research finds it can actually increase the risk of diabetes.
  4. A nation of sugar addicts

    No wonder we're fatter and sicker than ever and getting worse every day: New numbers from the CDC show that half of all Americans over the age of TWO YEARS OLD drink at least one soda a day.
  5. Diet soda linked to heart risk

    A new study finds that people who drink diet soda regularly could find a heart attack or stroke at the bottom of their next bottle.

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