Okay, first of all, I can't understand how the government has tricked millions of people into believing that anything with the word "artificial" could be good for us. Last time I checked, the word "artificial" was another word for "fake." Since when did fake food become healthy?
The early 90s brought about a huge resurgence in diet food, which could only be labeled as such due to the replacement of sugar with artificial sweeteners. With this switch, many food portions could now be considered "fat free," "sugar free," or "low fat." This, of course, gave people a false hope that artificial sweeteners were the wave of the dietetic future and that they could still overindulge on prepackaged, processed foods even while on a diet.
Big mistake! Artificial sweeteners are not food! They aren't even something our bodies can recognize and break down into something useful, like energy. They are toxins. That's right; I said that artificial sweeteners are toxins. In fact, they are considered to be one of the most toxic substances our livers have to process and they bog it down, making it work at less than desirable levels. Artificial sweeteners to look out for include:
Other Problems with Artificial Sweeteners
- Along with being toxic to our livers, artificial sweeteners can actually make you crave sweet treats even more! That's right, just like any drug, once you get a taste for it you need more and more of it to become satisfied by it. Tricky! And since these sweeteners are up to 500 times sweeter than natural sugar you end up needing more sugar to satisfy yourself if you eat the real stuff. You are setting yourself up for "sugar high" and then a subsequent crash once the sugar has worn off. Sugar dependency is one of the major contributors of heart disease and type 2 diabetes in the United States.
- Sweeteners also contribute to an increased appetite due to the fact that our bodies do not derive any nutrition from them. Even if you eat a totally healthy meal, following it up with a diet Coke or anything with an artificial sweetener will leave your body wanting and needing more to feel full. It is a vicious cycle and one that many have trouble escaping.
- These products give you a false sense of being healthy. When you see labels with "no fat" or "low fat," your first thought is, "Hey, these will help me lose weight. They're healthy." Unfortunately, this is just not the case. Nearly every single diet food that is on store shelves has an artificial sweetener in it to replace the usual sugar. That is the only reason they can be labeled this way. These foods are not healthy, they aren't natural, and they should be banned.
Finding Alternatives to Sweeteners
Mother Nature likes sweet things just as much as the next gal, so she was smart to make her own natural sweeteners that our bodies can recognize and use. These include:
- Raw, unprocessed honey
- Maple syrup
- Juice from fruit
Remember what I always say - eat food in the most natural form possible; that’s what our bodies recognize and know how to use. By-pass the prepackaged and preprocessed foods on the store shelves that promise to help you lose weight. Instead, eat the foods that have no words on them at all. They're the ones that will do the least harm and the most good - for your weight loss goals and your liver!