Reducing sugar intake will help make you healthier and will help you lose weight. I don’t have to say much more about this. It’s been written about and talked about for years now and frankly I think it’s a no-brainer. Today, the average American consumes almost 152 pounds of sugar in one year. Most of that sugar comes in the form of sweet treats like cookies, candy, cakes, muffins and sodas. Processed foods are loaded with added, refined sugar and that is what causes these problems.
So are artificial sweeteners the answer? Maybe we should just buy treats sweetened with Asparrtame or Splenda. Well not so fast. Those very sweeteners you may have been reaching for in order to help you lose weight have been working against you in numerous ways. Studies have connected artificial sweeteners with a variety of problems, including: headaches, depression, cognitive and neurological problems, behavioral issues, cardiovascular effects, risk of chronic kidney disease and risk of preterm delivery.
Additionally, artificial sweeteners can seriously slow or stop fat loss and cause weight gain by causing calorie dysregulation. This is when your body loses the ability to correlate the degree of a food’s sweetness to the number of calories it contains. You see, even though these sweeteners don’t have calories, they may generate responses in your body that set up the expectation of calories. They can trigger cravings and make you eat more. The opposite of what you want if weight loss is your goal.
Because they are so sweet – 300 times sweeter than table sugar – they encourage sugar craving and sugar dependence and repeated exposure trains flavor preference.
Weight loss is a complicated issue but as with overall health, the quality of the food you eat is key. And artificial sweeteners just may be derailing your best efforts to lose weight.
Do you use artificial sweeteners? Are you finding yourself with increased cravings and difficulty losing weight?
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