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Review of Low-Carb Sugar Substitutes

Published on April 25, 2014,

Over at Low Carb Support there is a comprehensive review of the various sugar alternatives that are available and an assessment of their suitability for those on a low carb diet. Click the blue link below to see the full article…

Best low-carb sugar substitutes | Low Carb Diet SupportSugar is finally getting some media attention as the ultimate diet demon. All dieticians now seem to agree that there is nothing good about refined sugar, and everyone would be better off cutting it out completely. Low-carb dieters have, of course, known this for a long time. White sugar is pure carb, and there is no place for it whatsoever in a low-carb diet. Fortunately, giving up sugar doesn’t mean you will never eat anything sweet again. Sugar substitutes and sweeteners are now widely available, both online and in the High Street supermarkets, shops and cafes. With dozens of different products out there, I often get asked which ones are best for a low-carb diet.

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Food Policy Expert Calls For Investigation Into Serious Health Concerns Over Aspartame

Published on March 13, 2013,

A leading British expert has called for an investigation into serious health concerns over the artificial sweetener aspartame – after the EU food watchdog insisted it was safe. This is from the Daily Mail… 

Diet Coke Billboard

Diet Coke Billboard (Photo credit: zyphbear)

The European Food Safety Authority has published a draft scientific opinion effectively rubbishing more than 20 studies which have identified potential problems with the sweetener, ranging from premature births to cancer.

The authority’s view will be welcomed by manufacturers who use aspartame and similar sweeteners in fizzy drinks such as Diet Coke, and diet foods consumed by millions of people every day.

But Erik Millstone, professor of science policy at the University of  Sussex, has challenged the ‘biased’ and ‘deeply flawed’ EFSA opinion.

Professor Millstone has been a leading expert on food policy in the UK for many years and his lobbying was instrumental in the setting up of Britain’s Food Standards Agency.

The way the EFSA assessed the evidence on aspartame was ‘perverse and biased’, he claimed. 

He added: ‘The panel could only have reached its conclusion that aspartame is safe by implicitly assuming that almost all studies indicating no adverse effects are entirely reliable – even though they have numerous weaknesses and were almost all commercially funded, while all the studies indicating that aspartame may be unsafe are deemed unreliable – even though they sometimes have particular methodological strengths and even though they have all been funded independently of vested commercial interests.’ 

He also suggested that the EFSA panel that carried out the assessment was dominated by experts linked to manufacturers or regulators that have previously supported aspartame.

Professor Millstone said: ‘Of the 17 members of the EFSA panel, seven have direct commercial conflicts of interest, and another five have institutional conflicts of interest, for example, because their employers have already announced that aspartame is safe.’

More at:  Cancer and premature birth fears linked to fizzy drink sweetener

How To Lose Weight: Avoid Artificial Sweeteners

Published on November 29, 2012,

In the latest of his excellent and sometimes surprising tips on how to lose weight, the Diet Doctor says we should avoid artificial sweeteners because studies show they can actually increase appetite and cravings for sweet food. This is from the Diet Doctor…

Artificial Sweeteners - Splenda & Equal

Artificial Sweeteners – Splenda & Equal (Photo credit: Bukowsky18)

Many people replace sugar with artificial sweeteners in the belief that this will reduce their calorie intake and cause weight loss. It sounds plausible. Several studies, however, have failed to show any positive effect on weight loss by consuming artificial sweeteners instead of plain sugar.

Instead, according to scientific studies, artificial sweeteners can increase appetite and maintain cravings for sweet food.

This could be because the body increases insulin secretion in anticipation that the sugar will appear in the blood. When this doesn’t happen, blood sugar drops and hunger increases. Whether this chain of events really take place is somewhat unclear (although something odd happened when I tested Pepsi Max). Nevertheless, artificial sweeteners can maintain an addiction to sweets and lead to snack cravings. And the long term effects of consuming artificial sweeteners are unknown.

By the way, Stevia is marketed as a natural alternative to artificial sweeteners. That’s marketing talk. There is nothing natural about a processed super-sweet white powder like Stevia.

If you’re having trouble losing weight I suggest that you completely avoid sweeteners. As a bonus you’ll soon start to enjoy the natural sweetness of real food, once you’re no longer adapted to the overpowering artificial sweetness of junk food and “diet” sodas.

See all the Diet Doctor’s weight loss tips at  his ‘How To Lose Weight’ page

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