So the holidays are over, it's a new year and all the buzz over weight loss is already getting old. Well, here's a diet myth-buster for you to add to your plate.
Beverages that call themselves "DIET" are in fact low in or free of calories. Yes, by avoiding calories, one can lose weight. It's simple math. Calories OUT > Calories IN = WEIGHT LOSS. However, when we drink these diet beverages, we are not considering what else is making its way IN.
The thing about diet drinks is that they use fake sugars like aspartame or saccharin as a calorie-free sweetener. Another nasty replacement artificial sugar is sucralose, commonly known as Splenda. These substitutes have a major impact on the body, leading to inflammation, cancer, and WEIGHT GAIN. Here's a little info on a few...
- Saccharin has been found to cause bladder cancer in animals, but until someone pays to study humans, it is considered safe for use. Hm. Wanna add to your chances even more just to save on calories? I say no.
- Aspartame (Nutrasweet and Equal)- has been around since 1981 and is considered safe. However, its first chemical breakdown step in the body removes a methyl group making it an incredibly toxic "wood alcohol." This is foreign to the body and is not processed like alcohol, so it is left to do major damage to the body.
- Sucralose (Splenda) is basically sugar which has chlorines stuck on it. The chlorinating agent is Phosgene, a compound manufactured under the chemical weapons division. It was stockpiled as part of military weapons arsenal from prior to WWI until after WWII. Ummmm... yeah. This scary fake sugar can cause itchy skin, GI disturbance and headaches...and then contribute to chronic disease. Not so super for those with chronic disease already.
They all suck physiologically, too. When the body ingests sugar, whether real or not, it releases insulin, a hormone which processes carbohydrates. Insulin is difficult to control in diabetes, a metabolic disease that affects blood sugar stability, and thus cardiovascular, digestive and neurological health. When we drink fake sugars, we disturb insulin regulation, thus increasing risk for diabetes.
When insulin and other digestive enzymes rise, nothing is there for them to work on, so they then go into a sense of starvation. Any calories found go into storage, that being your adipose or FAT cells. Eh, hem- gaining weight, not the good kind.
So if you MUST have something with sugar, get real. Drinks without synthetic substitutes will be more satisifying and more efficient on the body. Reading the ingredients list is your biggest defense to harmful additives and substitutes.
Some Bad sugars include:
- High Fructose Corn Syrup- found in SO MUCH!! Watch your juices, they sneak it in there. Only drink 100% juice if you can.
- Agave Nectar
- Real fruit juices
- Local Honey
- Raw sugar, Sucrose
But as always, MODERATION = BALANCE = HAPPINESS. We are all human, and our greatest gift is the power of thought and choice. Be your own teeter-totter.