If you ask most people why they use artificial sweeteners, they’ll give you one of two answers…
They’ll tell you they use them to lose weight.
Or they’ll say they use them because they are worried about diabetes.
What they don’t know is this…
Artificial sweeteners make you fatter, not thinner. And as a result, they raise, instead of lower, your risk of type 2 diabetes.
The latest study backing this up was published in the journal Current Atherosclerosis Reports. Researchers followed 5,158 people for seven years.
Scientists found that people who used artificial sweeteners gained more weight than those who didn’t use them.
Professor Peter Clifton led the study. He found that consumers of artificial sweeteners such as aspartame (NutraSweet) and sucralose (Splenda) tend not to reduce their overall sugar intake. They end up feeling that “they can indulge in their favorite foods.”
On top of that, “artificial sweeteners also change gut bacteria, which may lead to weight gain and risk of type 2 diabetes,” said Professor Clifton.
Diet sodas may be the worst type of non-sugar sweetened products. They’re linked with a higher risk of death from all causes. They increase the chances of having heart disease, a stroke, and dementia.
6 Natural and Healthy Sweeteners
There are better options than artificial sweeteners and refined sugar:
- Coconut Sugar. Made from the sap of cut flower buds of the coconut palm, it has a lower glycemic index than table sugar. This prevents blood sugar spikes. It’s also a great source of potassium. Despite its name, it doesn’t have a coconut flavor. The taste is more along the lines of brown sugar. You can swap it for regular sugar in cooking.
- Agave Nectar. This honey-like sap comes from the leaves of blue agave, a succulent plant in Mexico. Like coconut sugar, agave nectar has a low glycemic index. It’s 1-1/2 times sweeter than sugar, so you don’t need to use as much.
- Raw Honey. Not all honey is the same. Most honey, probably the kind you have sitting in your pantry, is heavily processed. Raw organic honey is a better choice. It hasn’t been heated, pasteurized, or processed. Raw honey contains vitamins, minerals, and other nutrients that industrial honeys don’t have. The darker the honey, the more nutrients and flavor. It’s just as sweet as sugar, only healthier. It also has antibacterial, antifungal, antiseptic, and antioxidant properties.
- Blackstrap Molasses. With its robust bittersweet flavor, blackstrap molasses is the liquid byproduct of sugarcane. But don’t confuse blackstrap molasses with regular molasses. They’re produced differently. Blackstrap molasses contains an array of healthy minerals such as iron, vitamin B6, magnesium, and calcium. It also has more antioxidants than any other natural sweetener. It has a low glycemic index to help control blood sugar levels.
- Stevia. This low-calorie natural sweetener is made from the leaves of a plant native to South America. Stevia is much sweeter than table sugar. So a little goes a long way. The leaves can be used whole or ground. Its glycemic index is zero. So it has no effect on your blood sugar. There are also no artificial ingredients in it.
- Date Sugar. Made from dehydrated dates, it is loaded with fiber, vitamins, and minerals. It is best used for baking. It makes a great alternative to brown sugar. You can find it at health food stores. Just be sure it is unprocessed and raw.
These healthy sugar alternatives offer the sweetness you love, without the weight gain and risk of diabetes that chemical sweeteners cause.
Editor’s Note: If you’re trying to lose weight, don’t fall for the calorie cutting myth. Calories don’t drive weight gain. Something else does. And it’s easy to control. Discover more by reading The Weight-Loss-for-Life Protocol. It’s in Independent Healing, the monthly newsletter that deciphers the latest science to bring you unbiased medical information that can transform your health. Find out more HERE.