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CARLY241 Posts: 189
1/11/13 12:47 P

Real is better. But you shouldn't be eating butter or sugar anyway.

BRYNDECLAN SparkPoints: (1,600)
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Posts: 21
1/11/13 12:00 P

I like Sunshine's logic. dig deeper and realize all these choices have consequences. I work in a dental office and often see people who 'went off artificial sweeteners and back to sugar because it's natural'. We are finding too much tooth decay. Just because something is natural, doesn't mean it may still reek havoc on you! think!

STODD251 Posts: 754
1/11/13 11:53 A

I'm not sure what the "right" answer is, but I tend to avoid anything that's not real. I don't have a lot of sugar or butter, so I think it's more harmful to eat fake stuff because often the flavors come from chemicals. I'd rather just have the real stuff. Plus a lot of people seem to use the fake stuff thinking "It's healthy, I can use a whole bunch of it" Sometimes when you look at the nutriotional info you'll find there's not a huge difference in calories anyway.

DIDS70 Posts: 5,368
1/11/13 11:13 A

Never ever ever will eat fake food.
If it is made in a plant i won't eat it. If it is made by a plant, I chow.

-POOKIE- SparkPoints: (327,934)
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Posts: 22,207
1/11/13 10:50 A

margarine tastes gross.
Butter tastes great.

Weigh your portion and track it. If I'm going to eat something then it better be worth it!

BANDOMOM1 SparkPoints: (3,254)
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Posts: 337
1/11/13 10:50 A

Totally agree. I suffered Migranes and headaches for 25 years, and I stopped my Diet Pepsi, sometimes having headaches as much as 27 times a MONTH, I stopped drinking that, which contains Aspartame. It was a terrible withdrawl, and I thought I would die w/o my pepsi. My headaches stopped. Now I know the dangers of ARTIFICAL SWEETERS!! I stay away! And its very sad how they make people THINK they are good. They are a hazard to us humans. I also do not use butter, or margarine. I recently switched my Olive Oil, to Grapeseed Oil. It is wonderful and does not burn, nor take away the flavor from your food like Olive Oil does. Read everything you put in your body. If you can make it, do so. Processed foods are something we should Not put in our bodies..

OPUSEVA Posts: 1,333
1/11/13 10:34 A

"Considering the stuff that insects WILL eat, I'm not so sure I want to eat something they WON'T eat. "

Well, duh. Insects have entirely different senses than people do. While it may be an amusing anecdote, it has Zero relevance.

OBIESMOM2 SparkPoints: (248,668)
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1/11/13 10:14 A

a comedian (maybe George Carlin? Not sure) mentioned artificial sweeteners in one of his routines. He said that you could make a nice sized mound of artificial sweetener on the sidewalk and put less that a tsp of sugar on the other side. Ants would go around the artificial to get to the real thing.

Considering the stuff that insects WILL eat, I'm not so sure I want to eat something they WON'T eat.

I don't add sweetener to much of anything anyway. I do occasionally drink a diet Coke or Pepsi. Other than that, usually fruit is my sweetener.

MISSSVJS SparkPoints: (41,145)
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Posts: 1,423
1/11/13 10:08 A

Here's my take on the real vs. fake issue - if it wasn't food 100 years ago, I don't eat it now. Pretty simple in my mind!

KRISTEN_SAYS SparkPoints: (81,670)
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1/11/13 9:01 A

I try not to consume any processed food. I don't use margarine or artificial sweeteners. I rarely consume added sugar, but when I do, it's real sugar. Same with butter - I don't use it often at all, but I use real butter when I do. For years I had the mindset that if a product was fat free/sugar free/reduced calorie/etc., it was automatically better for me. Not always the case.

NIRERIN Posts: 14,275
1/11/13 8:29 A

there isn't a single right answer is the problem.
i think that artificial sweeteners are great for people with diabetes, but i try not to touch them with a ten foot pole. then again, the stuff in crystal light basically gives me a migraine, the pink packets and the blue packets taste like sucking on a tin can and by the time splenda came around i was pretty leery of the whole idea.
as far as butter or margarine i have butter in the fridge at the moment and i also rotate that with earth balance. but 90%+ of my cooking i use olive oil in. in either case i think reducing the amount that you use of either is going to be better for you overall than picking between the two.
if you have a lot of weight to lose, using a fake product can be a really easy way to cut calories and start losing the weight you need to. in other words, you don't have to change what you're eating, just the brand, which can be a big help to a lot of people. so if you love dairy, having no fat, artificially sweetened dairy is one way you can eat nearly the same amount as before and lose weight. having less dairy altogether is another way to achieve that goal. especially when you are starting out, the first way is an easier way to achieve that goal. to some degree, you will have to change overall what you are eating, but how you do it is up to you.

1/11/13 8:22 A

Go with the real thing. There have been numerous studies showing that artificial sugars actually INCREASE our desire for sugar. Trans fats (aka margarine) have been proven to be WORSE for heart disease than saturated fat. Processed food usually has a lot less vitamins than whole foods as well.

BIGTIRE Posts: 2
1/11/13 8:15 A

I found Sunshines post very interesting. But what about taste and satisfaction? Personally, I don't think margarine holds a candle to butter. So if I'm adding a fat I'm going with the one I really like. I feel that fat free cheese is awful, so I primarily use parmesan, but if I'm going for cheddar it's going to be real stuff, no less than 2% milk fat. However, I'm perfectly cool with fat free sour cream. I think you need to weigh in your level of satisfaction as well.

REYNINGSUNSHINE SparkPoints: (20,387)
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Posts: 523
1/11/13 3:01 A

I love "fake" sugars.

First of all, the kind that I like is actually "real" sugar. Sucralose, the chemical compound that is termed Splenda, is a real, biochemical sugar. But it is not a *nutritive* sugar. It is not table sugar. When people talk about "sugar" in their diet, they are really referring to table sugar, or sucrose. Sucrose is different than fructose, which is different than galactose, which is different than glucose- and ALL of those are sugars.

People often assume that our bodies are meant to metabolize only "natural" things- and people think that anything created in a lab setting is evil, even processed high-fructose corn syrup. The truth? Sugars get metabolized similarly based on their similar chemical structure. Of course, there are small differences, and that's why some sugars taste more/less sweet, spike blood sugar more/less, etc, but there are not huge difference from the "fake" real sugars. The biggest difference is that the calories are different, and if we taste something that we perceive to be as sweet as cane sugar, but we don't have the energy to go with it, it can trigger us to 'want' more.

But you need to understand that the physical body is just a series of chemical exchanges. Your body can't tell if that sucrose you are eating is from the cane directly or processed after. The sucrose is sucrose no matter what it is from.

The major difference between eating sucrose from the cane and eating sucrose refined is that the cane contains the nutrients- the micronutrients- that the refined doesn't, which is why it is much better for you to eat blackstrap molasses than refined white sugar.

Another thing: not all "natural" things are good for you. The world is full of poison. It's how plants compete for their lives! You don't go out and eat shrooms, right? Poison berries? Rattlesnake poison- dude, that's stuff natural, but it is LETHAL!

Stuff like aspartame are not real sugars, and thus they are going to have other problems involved with it... I've never had problems with it personally, but I know people who have. It isn't because it's "synthesized" in a lab; it's because the chemical structure makes it react in other ways in the body.

Margarine is worse than butter not because it is also synthesized, but because in the hydrogenation process, trans-fatty acids are made. We actually just learned about hydrogenation this past semester in my organic chemistry class, and while there IS a way to basically ensure your major organic product is in the "cis" formation (what you want), there is no 100% way, and there will always be some small fraction of trans forming, too.

But you know, trans-fatty acids also occur in nature.

So, the truth of it is: do whatever you find best. Don't avoid things that are processed because they are processed. Don't eat natural foods because they are natural. Look at the nutrition involved. Look at what ELSE you are eating. You aren't just eating margarine; you are eating trans-fatty acids, which isn't so great. But with sugars, if you switch to eating more fruit, or sweetening with molasses, you aren't just eating sugar; you're eating vital minerals and vitamins!

SUSANBEAMON Posts: 11,592
1/11/13 1:27 A

i think as much as possible, use real. our bodies know what to do with the real stuff. but these need to be used in moderation, or as little as possible.

1/11/13 12:41 A

Real butter is better than margarine... but coconut oil is better than both... I have got rid of margarine and I have some butter I don't use much but mostly use olive oil and coconut oil... for squash in the oven or cooking in fry pan I use coconut oil because it is a medium chain triglyceride and is ant bacterial and anti viral... I also use it as mouth wash to prevent gum disease... Olive oil burns at medium temperatures and turns to something like trans fats... where coconut oil good for the brain..... is better to cook with... It is solid until 75 degrees F

1/11/13 12:37 A

I know the answer to this because I struggled to lose weight after quitting smoking and used aspartame not a good idea at all it makes you gain weight and then leaves toxins in your fat cells... real sugar is better but no sugar is best... Now I use stevia for last year and after I got rid of the toxins from artificial sugars I finally started losing weight again..

THEPATH2ME Posts: 62
1/11/13 12:29 A

For awhile now I've been fighting with myself over this! Real sugar or fake sugar? Real butter vs Margarine?? Processed food, does it hurt us?? I'm so torn. What is right??

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