Artificial sweetener© Pexels

Give That Artificial Sweetener A Rest, Says Study

Salva Mubarak
Senior Features Writer

If you’re someone who feels like you’ve done your bit for your health by substituting real sugar with artificial sweeteners, then you might need to re-evaluate some of your life choices.

These sugar substitutes might seem beneficial for your health with their claims of having zero or no calories, but a new study has discovered some adverse health consequences after frequent use of these sweeteners.

A randomised controlled trial recently found out that regular consumption of sucralose and saccharin (popular artificial sweeteners) are not as chemically inert as we previously assumed them to be. The study, conducted among 120 participants who had never consumed artificial sweeteners in their life, found that these can alter the composition of gut microbiome and severely effect your sugar tolerance.

Compared to control groups who were given a placebo, these participants were given sachets of saccharin and sucralose every day for two weeks. The results after the time period showed distinct physiological changes in the seven days after the experiment.

One of the reasons for this extreme response might be, according to the researchers, that artificial sweeteners are more than 200 times sweeter than sugar. This means that when it interacts with sugar receptors or bacteria in the mouth and gut, it could trigger powerful metabolic effects that could harm your health. This is also the reasons why experts do not recommend going for diet sodas, sweetened using these artificial substitutes, in place of regular sugary sodas.

The researchers also noted that everyone’s microbe structure is different and it’s unlikely that everyone will have the same response to artificial sweeteners. But it’s also unlikely that it won’t effect the gut microbe system and glucose tolerance in some way or the other. Post this study, the researchers are looking to further investigate the long-term health impacts of artificial sweeteners.