Excessive sugar consumption has long been considered a primary obstacle to losing weight. Most people then make the logical assumption that switching to an artificial sweetener can reduce calories, cut down on sugar consumption and help you lose weight.
Logically, this should work and lead to weight loss, but a recent study of long term trials has revealed some pretty shocking results.
Long Term Study Of Synthetic Sweeteners
When long term studies (10 or more years) of over 400,000 people were compiled and analyzed it became apparent that the intended goal of losing weight by switching to artificial sweeteners didn’t materialize.
Not only did artificial sweeteners cause weight gain, it also increased other health problems. Common weight related issues included having a negative impact on metabolism, gut bacteria, and increased appetite.
What’s worse, most people ending up with higher rates of obesity, high blood pressure, diabetes and heart disease.
Plant Based Sweeteners Need More Data
Only synthetic sweeteners were part of the long term studies as plant based sweeteners are a relatively new product.
List of common synthetic sweeteners:
- Sweet N Low
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Why It Causes Weight Gain
Data and statistics can tell you what happened after the fact, and lead you to assumptions and a possible correlation but there isn’t definitive proof as to why sythentic sweeteners often result in weight gain instead of weight loss. Here’s some of the most likely reasons:
Perception Of Extra Calories
It’s possible there’s a psychological influence to consuming a zero calorie sweetener that may lead to over consumption of calories from other foods. You believe you’ve essentially earned “extra calories” to consume later because of the zero calorie sweeteners.
We Aren’t Fooling Our Hormones
There is growing evidence that our bodies don’t interpret artificial sweeteners in the way we’d like. It isn’t just the calories from sugar that can influence hormones and enzymes, it’s often the interpretation of something sweet. So, it may not matter as much as we’d hoped that artificial sweeteners have zero calories as it relates to insulin and blood sugar.
Interferes With Use Of Real Sugar
Using artificial sweeteners may also disrupt our innate ability to utilize and allocate calories from foods that are sweet. The taste of something sweet should have a high amount of calories in it as found in nature. Depriving those calories associated with sweet food, may disrupt how our body interprets food it considers to be sweet and the calories associated with it.