The Truth About Artificially Sweetened Soft Drinks

NWS_20131031_LIF_010_29389215_I1Almost every week, a new statistic emerges about the rising tide of lifestyle-related diseases such as obesity and type 2 diabetes. A huge number of factors contributes to this phenomenon including lifestyle choices and genetics, but shifts in dietary practices resulting in an increase in the intake of highly processed foods is a major contributor. In particular, regular consumption of high-calorie sugar-sweetened drinks has been linked to weight gain and a constellation of indicators of ill-health known as the metabolic syndrome.

Drinks that contain large amounts of added sugar are readily available in shops, newsagents, petrol stations, bars and restaurants. Today’s article is about the erroneous assumption that removing the sugar somehow makes these drinks healthy.


With sugar-sweetened drinks linked to an increased risk of diabetes, metabolic syndrome and obesity, drinks companies had to come up with a new slant. “Sweetness without the calories” is probably the best way to express it.

Out of this concept, “diet”, “no added sugar” and “zero-calorie” drinks were developed using various forms of artificial sweeteners. The presence of these was paramount. Artificial sweeteners are food additives that are often hundreds of times sweeter than a comparable amount of sugar, and are added to foods and drinks to make them taste sweet – minus the calories. Some of the most common artificial sweeteners are aspartame, sucralose and saccharin. Some health practitioners believe they are an ideal replacement for sugar-sweetened drinks while others say they should be avoided.


Studies have linked artificial sweeteners to an increased risk of cancer, obesity, diabetes and digestive problems. The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has classified artificial sweeteners as safe to use, while the American Cancer Society has said there is no link between aspartame and cancer. And so for decades, artificially sweetened foods and drinks have been recommended as suitable options for diabetics and those overweight.

However, the recommendation to consume artificially sweetened drinks as an alternative to sugar-sweetened varieties is coming under fire. Mounting research suggests that rather than preventing weight gain and the risk of some diseases, artificially sweetened drinks can induce a whole series of physiological and hormonal responses that contribute to weight gain, and may even increase the risk of type 2 diabetes.

Similarly, a recent study in the US involving more than 250,000 people found that depression was more common among frequent consumers of artificially sweetened drinks. In such studies, it is often hard to decipher cause and effect – do sufferers of depression gravitate towards these drinks as a habit, or do these drinks contribute to depression?


Filed Under: FeaturedHealth Freedom


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  1. cpmt says:

    Early 70’s they said saccharine caused cancer, specially on men. a few years later saccharine ‘disappear’ then a few years later appear again with other name… Still SACCARINE CAUSES CANCER BUT NOW THEY DENY IT, THE SAME WAY THEY DID DENIED WITH CIGARETTES SMOKING FOR MORE THE 20 YEARS (FDA AND GOV. AND PERTINENT COMPANIES ). I DON’T TRUST THEM ANYMORE (my father and a close friend died because saccharine) DON’T BELIEVE WHAT THE FDA & GOVERNMENT TELL YOU. USE COMMENT SENSE AND LOGIC DON’T USE ARTIFICIAL -NOTHING, NADA, ETC- I AM UPSET THEY CONTINUE DOING THIS WITH DRUGS AND FOODS AND OTHER THINGS. BY THE TIME THEY TELL YOU SOMETHING IS WRONG and not to take it, there is an epidemic of illnesses and deaths.

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