We’ve been preaching for a while now that artificial sweeteners (such as the ones in diet soda) should be avoided and that they are bad for your health. Here are many reasons why you should avoid artificial sweeteners:
- They Cause Headaches: Some people experience increased headaches while using artificial sweeteners. Cut out the diet sodas and see if your headaches disappear. Aspartame has been shown to trigger migraines, and to cause more frequent, severe headaches in regular sufferers. This is especially true with long-term exposure to the chemical.
- They Increase Your Appetite: Artificial sweeteners lead to an increased appetite and food intake in many people. Because artificial sweeteners are often significantly sweeter than sugar, risk for increased appetite and food consumption runs even higher when large quantities of the sweeteners are consumed.
- They Confuse your Brain: The enzymes in your mouth begin a cascade that primes your cell receptors for an insulin surge, and when it doesn’t arrive your brain feels cheated.
- They are Bad for your Health: People who use artificial sweeteners are heavier, more likely to have diabetes, and more likely to be insulin-resistant compared with nonusers.
- They Increase your Insulin: Acesulfame potassium, found in many artificial sweeteners, stimulates insulin secretion, which could cause hypoglycemia (low blood sugar). This compound has created lung, breast, thymus gland, and other tumors in rats, as well as leukemia and respiratory disease even in small doses. This culprit is often found in baked goods, frozen desserts, candy, drinks, cough drops, and breath mints.
- They Can Harm your Eyesight: The individual ingredients in aspartame as well as their breakdown products can do serious harm to your retina and optic nerves. Aspartame has been linked to blurred vision, eye pain, visual hallucinations and blindness. Formaldehyde, found in many sweeteners, is known to cause retinal damage, and methanol poisoning can lead to changes in your vision and ultimately, blindness.
- They May Cause Brain Cancer: The subject of aspartame and cancer continues to be controversial. However, there is sufficient evidence of a link to warn off anyone who is concerned about maintaining good health. Here’s why: When it was approved for use in diet soda in 1983, over a million pounds of aspartame was consumed. Less than a year later, in January 1984, the incidence of brain cancer took off at a rate far higher than any other type of cancer- by 10% in a year!
- They Can Trigger Seizures: Seizures are a primary side effect of aspartame consumption. As if that weren’t disturbing enough, they occur in people who’ve never had a seizure before, and disappear just as quickly when aspartame consumption is stopped. So much so, that in 1992, the United States Air Force issued a warning to pilots to avoid products containing aspartame because it has been linked to seizures and vertigo, dizziness, sudden memory loss and gradual loss of vision.