Sugar substitutes: Good or bad

What are sugar substitutes?

 

Sugar substitutes, synthetically prepared sugars which, obtained from natural sources like of plant. Known for a heated debate over their risks of cancer and effects on blood sugar and gut health.

Most of the health authorities consider them safe for use and shun all other serious risks attached to their use. Their main benefit is to help with losing weight as eating such sugar substitutes do not cause calorie pileup in the body.

The several types of sugar substitutes include:

Artificial sweeteners:

Aspartame, saccharin, sucralose, neotame

Sugar alcohols:

Erythritol, hydrogenated starch hydrolase, isomalt,

Sugar substitutes

Novel sweeteners:

Stevia extracts, tagatose, trehalose

Natural sweeteners:

Agave nectar, date sugar, fruit juice concentrate, honey, maple

 

All these sugar substitutes are insanely termed as natural however they are synthetic. These, processed and refined forms of sugar. However, only their sources are natural but not the end product upon which everyone relies. It does not matter what their classification involves until they are doing the job of substituting calorie sugar with the calorie-free sugar.

These sugar substitutes, known to provide an intense sweetening result because most of them, many times sweeter than the regular sugar.

 

What are the uses of sugar substitutes?

 

  • These substitutes of sugar are actually attractive alternatives to sugar since they add no calories in real. In addition to it, only a very small quantity in comparison to the normal sugar, required of this for that same sort of sweetness.
  • Artificial sweeteners, mainly used in several types of processed foods, including the baked stuff, candies, powdered drink formulations, puddings, cold drinks, canned foods, jellies or jams, all types of dairy products, and in endless other beverages and foods.
  • Some of the artificial sweeteners like sucralose, also very popular for home use. It is, used in home cooking and baking of foods. Before using the sweeteners it is advisable to check for the uses on the label since it does not provide volume to few recipes like a normal sugar. So these sweeteners might not work for every recipe and even might require some modification to make it work.
  • Some of the sugar substitutes work best in combination as they mask each other’s aftertaste. So you might have to try different of them to let you find out the combo which serves your purpose and makes everything delicious for you.
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What are the benefits of sugar substitutes?

 

Following are the few benefits of these sweeteners:

  • Weight control: 

    One of the important, as well as appealing aspects of these sweeteners, is that they do not have any nutritive value or calories in them.  On the contrary, 1 gram of regular table sugar usually possess nearly 4 calories, a teaspoon of it is nearly 4 grams so it comes out to be 16 calories for a teaspoon.

Sugar substitutes

  • Dental problems:

    They do not cause any tooth decay or cavities. So most of the dental issues, prevented by substituting normal sugar with artificial sugar substitutes.

  • Diabetes: 

    These substitutes are a good alternative for the people with diabetes. Unlike regular sugar, these sweeteners do not cause any blood glucose level spikes in general. However, always check with your prescribing doctor or dietitian prior using any of the sugar substitutes especially if you have diabetes. Even after starting with it always keep a check over your sugar numbers. Do not hesitate just one click can make you know your Diabetes Results.

 

What are the probable health concerns with sugar substitutes?

 

Over the years, these sugar substitutes which, used as sweeteners, blamed for causing several health problems including even cancer. This is mainly because there were saccharin studies, done on the laboratory rats in the 1970s which, revealed bladder cancer in them.

Because of that, saccharin once, labeled with a warning that it might be hazardous to the health. However, as per the National Cancer Institute and several other research agencies, there is no such confirm evidence that any of the FDA approved sweeteners can cause any serious health issues. Several research centers state these sugar substitutes are safe if used in small quantities, even in any pregnant women as well.

Still, some people might not like it or their systems do not settle with these sweeteners as good as with normal sugar but these are nowhere any major concern of health. Also, there are few current research going on about weight gain and excessive usage of these artificial sweeteners but there are no firm results as of now to support it.

All sugar substitutes, considered as food additives and regulated by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). Each one of them goes through a particular review process before approval and being, allowed in the market for sale by the FDA.

Conclusion:

Overall, the use of sugar substitutes is good with benefits like weight loss blood sugar control, and dental health. These sweeteners benefit only when, used in minimal quantities in the diet else it might lead to few bad outcomes. The tendency of its negative effects usually varies from one individual to another. Some might experience its negative effects whereas others, on the contrary, get benefits only, without negative effects.

However, before adding these sweeteners into your routine, consult with your physician, which type will be more appropriate for you and amount. So as to avoid any further complications unknowingly. Since motive of these sugar substitutes usage is to ideally help your health and not further deteriorate it.

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