Opinions re: Artificial Sweetener

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veganmadre
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Opinions re: Artificial Sweetener

#1 Postby veganmadre » Sat Aug 27, 2005 8:45 pm

What are your opinions? As I started my weight loss regime, I looked for quick fixes and opted for a lot of low sugar/sugar free items. About a month into this (given that I already seem to have a Diet Coke addiction that began, essentially, along with other horrible eating habits, at infancy) I started to go back to regular sweetener in moderation. Obviously moderation is the key to most things in life (excluding awesomeness). Anyone avoid aspartame/sucrose completely? Has any experiences SEVERE withdrawal? I seem to have horrible withdrawal symptoms when I attempt to cut out diet coke.

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#2 Postby V VII Hero » Sat Aug 27, 2005 9:56 pm

I completely avoid aspartame/sucrose.

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Re: Opinions re: Artificial Sweetener

#3 Postby kollision » Sat Aug 27, 2005 10:01 pm

veganmadre wrote:What are your opinions? As I started my weight loss regime, I looked for quick fixes and opted for a lot of low sugar/sugar free items. About a month into this (given that I already seem to have a Diet Coke addiction that began, essentially, along with other horrible eating habits, at infancy) I started to go back to regular sweetener in moderation. Obviously moderation is the key to most things in life (excluding awesomeness). Anyone avoid aspartame/sucrose completely? Has any experiences SEVERE withdrawal? I seem to have horrible withdrawal symptoms when I attempt to cut out diet coke.


I don't have withdrawel. Perhaps you are just like this as with any sweetner, you just want more.

The problem associated with Artificial Sweetner that contains Phenalalnine is that you do drink it, however you sure make up for it in other foods thinking you can add more to it. In the end, you take in more calories than you would if you drank regular coke or regular sugar foods.

There are some "supposed" dangers of it, such as blindness or cancer, but theres not much proof to prove this and plus it was given the go by the FDA.

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#4 Postby brendan » Sun Aug 28, 2005 12:39 am

I don't drink soft drinks of any kind, but I tend to think the regular variety is better than diet. I've heard the body has a difficult time expelling artificial sweetener and that medical experts have observed a correlation between where pockets of artificial sweetener are stored and the growth of cancerous tumors. As Kollison said, however, I'm not sure how substantiated these claims are. I've also heard that the Splenda brand sweetener was engineered by removing a hydrogen molecule and replacing it with chlorine so that the human digestive system recognizes it as poison and shoots it through the body before it can be absorbed. From what I understand, though, many of the sweeteners permitted in U.S. soft drinks are banned by the European Union.

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#5 Postby kollision » Sun Aug 28, 2005 12:44 am

brendan wrote:I don't drink soft drinks of any kind, but I tend to think the regular variety is better than diet. I've heard the body has a difficult time expelling artificial sweetener and that medical experts have observed a correlation between where pockets of artificial sweetener are stored and the growth of cancerous tumors. As Kollison said, however, I'm not sure how substantiated these claims are. I've also heard that the Splenda brand sweetener was engineered by removing a hydrogen molecule and replacing it with chlorine so that the human digestive system recognizes it as poison and shoots it through the body before it can be absorbed. From what I understand, though, many of the sweeteners permitted in U.S. soft drinks are banned by the European Union.


It seems like the EU is better than USA in many ways. Animal rights is one. Also, isn't part of it socialist when it comes to medical, just like Canada?

Anywho, I don't care if its poison, I still like them Diets :P

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#6 Postby brendan » Sun Aug 28, 2005 1:15 am

Hey, what's life without a little poison! :wink: Hehe.

Yeah, the United States is the only industrialized nation in the world without universal health care. Ree-dic-u-lous.

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#7 Postby kollision » Sun Aug 28, 2005 3:36 am

brendan wrote:Hey, what's life without a little poison! :wink: Hehe.

Yeah, the United States is the only industrialized nation in the world without universal health care. Ree-dic-u-lous.


What else is ridiculous is how they didn't join in with the other nations to reduce pollution. Their reason? China...man this place is something else.

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#8 Postby compassionategirl » Sun Aug 28, 2005 3:39 am

man that is the one and prolly only thing I like about Canada - public health insurance.

Surgeries, doctors visits, hospitals visits and stuff like that are all covered.

I feel so sorry for my fellow Americans who have to pay for these things unless they have a private insurance scheme. That must be BRUTAL. :(

PS. Is "stevia" considered a chemical/toxic substance/swettener just like aspartame and splenda, or is it better for you???????


thanks guys.

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#9 Postby kollision » Sun Aug 28, 2005 5:15 am

compassionategirl wrote:man that is the one and prolly only thing I like about Canada - public health insurance.

Surgeries, doctors visits, hospitals visits and stuff like that are all covered.

I feel so sorry for my fellow Americans who have to pay for these things unless they have a private insurance scheme. That must be BRUTAL. :(

PS. Is "stevia" considered a chemical/toxic substance/swettener just like aspartame and splenda, or is it better for you???????


thanks guys.


Stevia is from a shrub in South America that has been used for centuries. It's about 100 times sweeter than sugar. According to one study, it showed that it effected the male and female reproductive system. Nothing that I know of from what I have read so far shows cancer and it still is not approved by the FDA yet (again according to what I have read).

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#10 Postby sirdle » Sun Aug 28, 2005 8:27 pm

Hey veganmadre,

I drank diet Coke like water (often, instead of water) for years while growing up. I gave it up because I discovered that the caffeine really affected my mood. I don't eat or drink anything with caffeine, now... except chocolate :P . As you become healthier and eat better quality foods, you will find that your intake of sweeteners naturally drops.

I don't think that most of the sweeteners, if taken in small quantities, will harm you. But if your total intake is low, why not use real sugar instead of an artificial sweetener? Or better yet, how about fresh fruit? The breakfast cereal I use now has no sugar, but I eat it with soy milk and usually have an apple or an orange to go with it.
As long as men massacre animals, they will kill each other. Indeed, he who sows the seeds of murder and pain cannot reap the joy of love --- Leonardo Da Vinci

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#11 Postby madcat » Mon Aug 29, 2005 11:00 am

What kind of withdrawal are you going through? Headaches? Craving sweets? Are you drinking other sodas? Maybe it’s the caffeine that your body is missing. I am a major coffee junkie and I get irritable/ headaches when I don’t get caffeine. I’ve tried a couple of times to give it up but after a week or so I also slip up… it doesn’t help that I work at a coffee shop. By the way… based on your pic I don’t think you need to lose weight.

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#12 Postby chesty leroux » Sun Sep 04, 2005 3:52 pm

Hey veganmadre I totally feel you on the diet coke addiction. I used to drink so much diet coke. I was a chain diet coke drinker. I absolutely could not stop, despite the fact that it gave me headaches and dehydrated me. I finally gave it up, but it took me forever. It was a gradual process. When i tried to go cold turkey i would be fine for a few days and then go on a diet coke binge. So i just gradually reduced the amount of diet coke i would drink. Replaced most of it with water. When i find myself missing the carbonation, i have some club soda and squeeze a little lemon or lime juice in it, or add some other kinds of juice. I rarely crave diet coke anymore. All i drink now is water. So, it can be done. But it isnt easy. But it's well worth it because aspartame is sooooo bad for you. Good luck!!!

Nat, I use a little stevia in my oatmeal. It's not bad. It has a distinct taste to it though definately different than sugar. I tried baking it and the end result was pretty gross. If you need a sweetener i would reccomend it over aspartame or splenda.
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#13 Postby madcat » Wed Sep 07, 2005 10:11 am


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#14 Postby veggymeggy » Thu Sep 08, 2005 11:30 am

I am a diet soda addict :oops: I go through phases of stopping, then take one drink and get hooked all over again!
I like diet Shasta soda though, it uses sucralose instead of aspartame.
The studies linking cancer/artificial sweeteners were done in the 70's, and they were rather flawed ( I wish I had the exact info handy, I read a very good article about it recently but for the life of me can't remember where. I think in one of my nutrition magazines, I will look)
Anyway - more recent studies have refuted the cancer link.
I mostly use artificial sweeteners in small quantities, like in my tea and such. I find they're not suitable for important things like baked goods :) but handy for cutting out some of those "extra" calories that are so easy to pick up without even realizing it....like sweetening drinks, etc. For me I'd rather splurge once a week on a dessert and save 30 cal in sugar the rest of the days of the week than compromise the quality of my dessert. :D I'm a sweet fiend!
I have tried Stevia....I found that it had a bitter aftertaste, has anyone else noticed this?

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#15 Postby michael » Fri Sep 23, 2005 10:58 am

This is my first post and I'm delighted to have discovered this site and message board. I've been reading some wonderful insights and was delighted to see Brendan Brazier posting, who at such a young age has shown a remarkable knowledge of vegan nutrition. That having been said...

The vegan and completely natural sugar alcohol xylitol is a superb sweetener and quite possibly the best of the non-cariogenic ones out there. It has been around for a long time now and the sugar and artificial sweetener lobbies would rather you didn't know about it. It's primarily derived from birchwood but is also found in strawberries, lettuce and some grains. It is so natural that the human body actually manufactures small amounts of it, which is good news as the enzymes are in place to properly metabolize it. The same cannot be said for sorbitol, which can promote a laxative effect. Xylitol is also anabolic/anti-catabolic, great news for body builders, and also, rather counter-intuitively actually retards sugar cravings--which from my own personal experience, I know to be true. I've used it in my hemp/flax/maca/ shakes for nearly two years now and have over time completely shed sucrose and sucrose/high fructose laden foods from my diet.

Check out this site: http://www.xlear.com

A relatively newly studied natural polyol erythritol, similar to xylitol is also receiving plaudits for its nutritional profile:

http://www.eridex.com/html/nutrition.html

Stevia was mentioned earlier which is also an excellent choice, completely safe and has been in use in Japan in their soft drinks (artificial sweeteners are prohibited in their drinks) for over 15 years. Yes, it does have a somewhat bitter and licorice-like after taste, but it supplements well with the more expensive xylitol. The FDA has forbidden Stevia to be marketed as a natural sweetener and several years ago attempted to actually BURN a book touting it's ability to curb obesity and diabetes. If this sounds implausible, check this:

http://www.stevia.net/bookburning.htm

The FDA always places the interests of consumers beneath those of food lobbies--always.

Cheers,

Michael


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