If you’re watching your waistline, swapping sugar for artificial sweeteners sounds like the deal of the century.
All of the sweetness… none of the calories!
And because it’s supposedly made from actual sugar… and it even cooks and bakes like the real thing… sucralose (a.k.a. Splenda) may sound like the next best thing to actually eating sugar.
That’s not just a trap that folks who are packing on a few extra pounds might fall into. Because diabetics often RELY on these fake sweeteners when they know that they can’t have the real thing.
The problem is, though, that even sucralose is no “substitute” for sugar, especially if you’ve already got blood sugar woes — because it’s ALSO been shown to make your blood glucose levels go haywire.
And a new study shows why: Sucralose appears to initiate a pathway that allows your cells to actually take in MORE glucose, which results in the accumulation of more fat.
Fat accumulation — especially in the belly — is one of the hallmarks of metabolic syndrome and a major risk factor for diabetes.
In this in vitro study, the more sucralose the human stem cells in the lab dish were exposed to… the more fat that accumulated.
The scary part is that all it takes is the equivalent of about four cans of diet soda a day for a little less than two weeks.
The study was recently presented at the annual meeting of the Endocrine Society, so it hasn’t yet been reviewed by industry peers or published in an established medical journal.
That means that it might be a while before we can judge whether the authors’ theory about “glucose entry” (that is, how much sugar the cells are taking in) holds any water.
But these researchers did find something interesting: If you’re already overweight, your genes are far more likely to express these changes (increased sugar intake and increased fat production) than if you’re at a healthy weight.
And you know who’s more likely to use sugar substitutes like sucralose?
People who are struggling with their weight!
It’s a vicious cycle.
But if you’re at risk for diabetes… or have already been diagnosed with prediabetes… you can get off this merry-go-round.
Avoid this sham sugar at all costs.
Unfortunately, that’s getting harder to do these days, as it’s not just a matter of whether to grab a packet from the sugar caddy at your local coffee shop.
Sucralose is commonly found in some diet sodas, but it can also be lurking in everything from yogurt to salad dressings to condiments, too.
Read ingredient labels carefully.
And if you need to feed your sweet tooth, try a handful of delicious berries.