February 24, 2018

Artificial Sweeteners don't help people lose weight, study finds

18 July 2017, 12:43 | Rex Hubbard

Artificial Sweeteners In Diet Fizzy Drinks May Be Making You Gain Weight

Experts Link Artificial Sweeteners With Obesity and Risk of Lifestyle Diseases

Fist, people who consume artificial sweeteners are also more likely to consume processed food which immediately puts them at a higher risk for weight gain and diabetes.

The longer observational studies showed a link between consumption of artificial sweeteners and relatively higher risks of weight gain and obesity, high blood pressure, diabetes, heart disease and other health issues, they said. Observational studies can not prove a cause-and-effect relationship, however.

"And there was some evidence of long-term harm from long-term consumption", Azad said.

Numerous clinical trials this study drew on didn't align closely with the way people consume such sweeteners in the real world - for instance, trials generally give subjects diet soda or sweetener capsules, while ignoring other sources, such as food.

Do artificial sweeteners help us lose weight?

Admittedly, both reviewed studies do have their strengths and weaknesses.

Among the seven RCT's, regular consumption of sweeteners had no significant effect on weight loss.

Over ten years, the increases in weight and Body Mass Index, or BMI, was modest.

"We found that data from clinical trials do not clearly support the intended benefits of artificial sweeteners for weight management". Publication bias was indicated for studies with diabetes as an outcome. "Everyone is told don't eat sugar, period".

When we also consider that a 2006 study by the National Cancer Institute of over half a million older adults concluded that there was no increased risk of cancer between those who drank diet drinks and those who did not, the evidence against the safety of artificial sweetners doesn't really stack up. But that's not how they're typically used, she says.

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One theory is that the sweeteners somehow disrupt healthy gut bacteria.

And artificial sweeteners are popular, even if diet soda drinks have fallen in popularity. Researchers wanted to look more broadly at what's going on by doing a large-scale analysis of dozens of studies on low-calorie sweeteners. The sweeteners could alter the way that gut microbes function in the digestion of food, or possibly change the body's metabolism over time by sending repeated false signals that something sweet has been ingested.

Dr. Shearer, who was not involved in the CMAJ study, says the findings from the Manitoba researchers add to mounting evidence against nonnutritive sweeteners.

David Ma, a professor in the department of Human Health and Nutritional Sciences at the University of Guelph, said "it is important to note, the study selectively assessed risk comparing extreme intakes of nonnutritive sweeteners".

Lauri Wright is an assistant professor of nutrition and dietetics with the University of North Florida.


"But what about weight-gain and insulin?"


You've been watching your sugar intake lately, so you select a diet soft drink from the office pop machine for a cool, refreshing pick-me-up.

Originally developed as an alternative to sugar, artificial sweeteners are used in products such as diet soft drinks and sugar-free candies in an effort to lower sugar intake and combat obesity.

In response to the April study, the Calorie Control Council said the research was not preliminary and doses were not "physiologically relevant", and noted that the study contradicts previous research that shows sucralose does not accumulate in the body.

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