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RENATARUNS SparkPoints: (4,367)
Fitness Minutes: (2,155)
Posts: 1,379
7/30/14 1:23 P

I haven't consumed artificial sweeteners of any kind in more than incidental quantities (i.e. my Mom made muffins with Splenda and handed me one) in years, since long before I ever lost any weight. Maybe it has an effect on weight one way or the other for some people, but it never seemed to make a difference to me.

I'm all for cutting out artificial sweeteners, but I'm not sure I see the point of consuming just as much as before and then adding sugar on top of that. What are you hoping to accomplish?

I firmly believe that in order to be successful at losing and maintaining weight, everyone who has issues with eating too many sweet foods has to come to terms with that somehow, and find a way to greatly reduce them. Could be a slow process, could be fast, but there is nobody I know who is normal weight after the age of about 30 who eats hundreds of calories' per day (or the equivalent in artificial sweeteners) of sugar in the form of sweets, desserts, processed foods, added to tea, and so on.

You can't cheat biology. Good news is, living that way has a lot more benefits, and fewer drawbacks, than you probably think right now.

TRIPLEMWF Posts: 906
7/30/14 10:58 A

I cut out all the artificial sweeteners on 6/9/14 and have never felt better.

GRAMCRACKER46 Posts: 1,787
7/29/14 8:16 P

The sugar I use is Florida Crystals Organic Cane Sugar. I use it in baking, unless I use honey. I do use Trivia in my plain Greek yogurt; its a bit tart.

Aspartame gives me brain fog so I avoid it.

EELPIE Posts: 2,700
7/29/14 7:09 P

I cut my sugar down by cutting out processed foods. I also cut down on the amount of sugar I take in my morning tea. I also discovered stevia isn't half bad. So... my morning routine is:

1 cup french vanilla tea with vanilla almond milk and 1/2 pack stevia

1 cup black tea with vanilla almond milk and 2 sugar dots

1 cup french vanilla tea with vanilla almond milk and 1/2 pack stevia

1 cup black tea with vanilla almond milk and 2 sugar dots

Yes, 4 cups tea.

If I drink I make my own iced tea sweetened with stevia and add vodka to it (3x a week 2 drinks each - not sissy drinks).

And that's about all the sugar/sweetener I get in a day - which isn't too bad.

KFOX2003 SparkPoints: (1,567)
Fitness Minutes: (1,474)
Posts: 13
7/29/14 7:03 P

Unfortunately I still drink Diet Coke more than I should, but I no longer eat snacks or sweets with fake sugar. If I want something sweet, I eat the real thing and I find that I'm more satisfied. I found that eating the real stuff actually helped curb my sweet tooth. If I want a cookie, I have one delicious cookie and move on rather than eating half the package of something that's made with a bunch of fake stuff.

ANITA_66 SparkPoints: (0)
Fitness Minutes: (7,286)
Posts: 529
7/29/14 6:17 P

I was using sweeteners trying to cut back on my sugar..but after reading some of the post here which have been alot of help.. I'm going back to real sugar but not as much...Thanks for the help guys..

SIMPLYME80 Posts: 406
11/17/13 6:35 P

I stopped using All subistitute sweetners or anything containing them. I went back to using only Cane sugar when I bake or use on foods. Know what? I began Losing weight again and feeling so much better!

FROOBERT Posts: 161
11/17/13 11:36 A

I've just about cut all sugar from my diet. I might have a cup of dry gluten-free cereal for a snack sometimes, but that's it.

I eat plain greek yogurt and drink hot tea. I prefer bitter to sweet!

I guess if you get used to different tastes, you won't need artificial sweeteners. They're bad for you anyways! Isn't agave nectar supposed to be a healthier substitute? Or stevia?

Edited by: FROOBERT at: 11/17/2013 (11:37)
EXNOLA Posts: 320
11/17/13 11:26 A

Have you thought about lessening your taste for sweetness? I used to have quite a sweet tooth and by cutting out all sugars and replacements for a few weeks I was able to change what I liked and have way more control over myself with desserts and the like. I learned to drink black coffee and tea (though I do prefer a bit of milk, I have never gone back to adding sugar to those. I learned to enjoy plain yogurt and can control if and how much extra sugar I eat.
It just takes a few weeks to get used to what food tastes like without added sweetness and you may find you like it that way or that you like less sweetness than before.

LOUIE-LILY Posts: 5,714
11/17/13 9:46 A

I worry about the substitute sweeteners. Rather get a little sugar.

11/17/13 9:45 A

I don't consume artificial sweeteners ever!

JENNA3 SparkPoints: (75,417)
Fitness Minutes: (55,321)
Posts: 2,704
11/17/13 9:33 A

I use some artificial sweeteners, but I'm careful about which ones. Some of them don't work great for me-they can give me stomach cramps. That didn't used to be the case, but it is now.

If your concern is that you should be consuming regular sugar-then just use that. I wouldn't add it to artificial sweetners. Use regular sugar-just less. So instead of a whole 20 ounce cola, have a 10 ounce and only one per day.

When I'm sweetening coffee (when I do it) I prefer more milk and a little regular sugar. If your baking calls for sugar and you want to use less, you can add some pureed fruit for extra sweetness-ripe bananas, apples and such are a great addition.


JAIZWAYS Posts: 2,341
11/17/13 8:43 A

I have gone back to using sugar or honey rather than the artificial sweeteners. I am more careful with those as they have calories.
I believe that the artificial sweeteners "feed your sweet tooth" and make you want things sweeter. Sugar free does not mean calorie free - often there is extra fat and "chemical sugar"i in the product to make it taste good. The same applies to fat free - Jelly Beans are fat free!
I am really trying to eat real food - it is better for you AND it tastes better.

SUNSHINE6442 Posts: 2,314
11/17/13 7:38 A

Aspartame contains a wood alcohol called Methanol...and also Aspartic Acid, Phenylalanine.
Look them up...... they are poisons

Splenda contains the drug sucralose. Anything with a potential poison is off limits to me, and because ever person reacts differently and has different tolerances I would certainly consider switching to Stevia.....stevia has no calories, a zero glycemic index (meaning it has no carbs), no artificial ingredients, and no effect on blood sugar.

GYPSYGOTH SparkPoints: (94,944)
Fitness Minutes: (72,557)
Posts: 45,743
11/16/13 6:46 P

I never consume artificial sweeteners, because I try not to ever consume things that are totally man-made. Creepy. I stick to things that grow out of the ground, have a mommy, or at the very least are minimally processed in order to be edible.

The research is controversial at best.

So was the original research on whether tobacco could be linked to cancer.

I'd rather not take my chances. (Plus, that stuff tastes horrible, and my research suggests that your body reacts to it in the same way as sugar, which means insulin spikes and blood sugar craziness that can lead to pre-diabetes. Again, no thanks!)

LOUNMOUN Posts: 1,334
11/16/13 3:59 P

If I consume artificial sweeteners I will also get bad headaches. I don't think it is worth it for me to experience pain just to eat or drink something sweet so I avoid those products.
I do consume natural sugars but try to limit those kind of foods and drinks.

SIMPLELIFE2 Posts: 707
11/16/13 3:55 P

"There are a "few" people who when given an artificially sweetened food or beverage; tend to have cravings for more sweet foods. If this is you; then you may want to cut back even more." -- This is me. I do much better when I avoid sweets -- artificial or natural.

I quit diet pop altogether since so many studies have found issues with it. I will use a bit of stevia in my green tea and I do eat fruit. But, because of the fiber, I don't have issues.

MANDIETERRIER1 Posts: 17,540
11/16/13 3:49 P

I develop gastric problems when I consume any kind of artificial sugar. And then it causes super cravings.

I would rather eat real sugar in moderation. I sort of like palm sugar and agave, but I know I have to use those in moderation as well. Can't stand Stevia or any form of it.

EELPIE Posts: 2,700
11/16/13 1:41 P

I get headaches from aspartame. I don't eat anything labeled Light or Diet. I cannot stand the taste of saccharine.

I use Truvia or real sugar, just not as much.

JUSTME9898 Posts: 2,933
11/16/13 1:35 P

I wish I could eat artificial sweeteners, but I have a strange reaction to aspartame, I get bladder infections. Horrible bleeding bladder infections. As a result I have stopped using all artificial sweeteners. I had lost fifty pounds using them and have now gained 25 back. I am very slowly on the road to losing again. There is about .001% of the population that shares my difficulty.

DELLA81156 Posts: 201
11/16/13 1:19 P

I would rather have no.sugar then sugar free stuff.You get so use to no sugar that you can not stand sugar free taste. emoticon emoticon

JENNILACEY SparkPoints: (81,972)
Fitness Minutes: (86,286)
Posts: 2,489
11/16/13 11:03 A

I add sugar free pudding mix (sweetened with aspartame) to my yogurt and overnight oatmeal. I am still skeptical of it but haven't noticed any ill effects over the year I've been using it. I also use a brown sugar, Splenda blend for baking and use Splenda to sweeten my coffee when I get Timmies but I usually have my coffee at home. I surprisingly don't crave sweets. I know some people say it leads to more cravings for sweets. I only crave sweets when I indulge in high sugar foods like; candy, chocolate, donuts, ice cream, cake, etc.

It hasn't affected my weight loss and weight management as far as I know. Of course this is just my personal experience. I try to eat as natural as possible but do make an exception for artificial sweeteners in moderation. For some reason they don't lead to the same cravings I get from natural sugars. I still use real maple syrup, bananas, applesauce and honey to sweeten some things in small amounts.

Edited by: JENNILACEY at: 11/16/2013 (11:15)
RUSSELL_40 Posts: 16,826
11/16/13 10:36 A

Personally, on a low carb diet, I can be losing at a steady pace, and sugar free jello, or diet coke twice a day will halt weight loss within a day. I have tested this several times. I am not a huge diet pop fan, but SF jello would be nice for my sweet tooth, every so often, right? I have no idea of the science, and for many, this is not a problem.

A better option though is to just have some sugar, but not sucrose. Cut out the pop, fruit juice etc., as well as table sugar, but get your sugars from fruit. That is nature's dessert, and very sweet, and even sweeter, once you cut out the added sugar in your diet. Then you will even be able to taste sugar in overcooked vegetables ( not that this is desirable.. but it happens ).

I tend to try to avoid as many things as possible created in a laboratory. The problem isn't so much sugar, but how we get it, and how much of it. Have some berries, apples, cantaloupe, plums, peaches etc., and you will get some sugar, and antioxidants, and fiber. Rasperries are very high in fiber.

We tend to label everything good or bad in our society, and bad needs to be eliminated. However, you didn't really eliminate sweets, you just switched to sugar free versions of those same foods, and they aren't natural. Instead of throwing out all sugar, pick and choose what you can eat that has natural sugars in it.. fruit, and vegetables. Low glycemic sugary foods, like berries won't cause the cravings that a Snickers bar will either ( a problem for me ).

I think it is great that you want to cut out the SF foods. I would look for healthier ways to include some foods that indulge that sweet tooth though, so you don't feel deprived. You may be surprised at how sweet berries can be, and that they will do the trick.

Edited by: RUSSELL_40 at: 11/16/2013 (10:37)
11/16/13 9:55 A

This type topic is often asked here at SP. Therefore, I have done an extensive review of the scientific literature and provide this article as an overview:

Artificial Sweeteners have been extensively tested, they are safe for consumption.
Still a moderation approach is always best with any food or food ingredient. Keep artificial sweeteners to no more than 4 servings daily is a moderate intake approach.

There are a "few" people who when given an artificially sweetened food or beverage; tend to have cravings for more sweet foods. If this is you; then you may want to cut back even more.

There are many studies that show that artificial sweeteners can be used successfully for weight loss; "along with" other weight loss techniques.

Your SP Registered Dietitian

GIPPER1961 Posts: 766
11/16/13 9:39 A

I will say this, this is a topic that intrigues me. I have cut back on sweetened things mainly because I am trying to retrain my tastes to more real food.

The problem I have with a lot of these studies is that they don't really tell us what measures they use, what do they control for etc.

People who use artificial sweeteners are predominantly over weight and many have been their entire lives and may have bad eating behaviors outside of sweetenrs. Without properly controlling for this in the sample it my tell us nothing (and frankly how can you properly control for this?) We usually don't know how much they feed the mice. Is it the equivalent of a couple of diet cokes a day or is it a massive amount?

There is question about whether they satisfy satiety similarly to sugar and therefore continue to make you hungrier.

I don't think it is a good idea for anyone to eat massive amounts of these but I have found a couple sugar free hard candies a day is good for me and I have cut out diet pops. The science fascinates me, but so much about nutritional science is difficult to quantify because of the massive differences that can exist in people and their metabolism, and their allergies and sensitivities.

I personally try to listen my body on these questions.

Edited by: GIPPER1961 at: 11/16/2013 (09:40)
ALIKISHOPS SparkPoints: (1,392)
Fitness Minutes: (6,741)
Posts: 1
11/16/13 9:19 A

I suspect that every person who reads these boards, like me, frequently consumes artificial sweeteners. But the more I read about it, the more I think I should cut out the aspartame, splenda and saccharine.

Fact: Artificial sweeteners have been around for more than 50 years, and there is no evidence that people who consume them regularly are any thinner than sugar eaters.

The other day I read about a study that found that mice fed saccharine ate far more than other mice, and they seemed to lose the ability to know when they had eaten enough.

Of course. humans are not mice, and Nectresse is not splenda is not aspartame is not saccharine. But I have heard of the hypothesis that when you taste sweetness, deep in your brain something says, "Oh boy, fuel is coming," and when the fuel doesn't come, your inner cranky toddler says "I want fuel and I want it now," and then you tell yourself, "I've been good and I deserve a treat."

I suppose the ideal would be to cut out everything that is sweeter than fruit, but I for one would need to go into an intense rehab program to do that.

For my baby steps, I have decided that I will add 1/4 tsp of sugar when I put sugar free Torani in my coffee, or 1/4 tsp honey in my tea. I'm even thinking of adding real sugar to all my diet colas etc. Does this sound totally insane? I am certainly not saying that sugar is good; I'm just saying all the artificials are just as bad. I wish someone would do a huge experiment where some people eat only splenda and some have only aspartame and some eat no artificials, so there was some evidence if one of these products actually did help weight loss.

Does anybody know more about the research on this?

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