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Artificial sweeteners:all worked up over nothing? (Part III)


Last updated 6/28/2007 at Noon

Mixed communication?

What is a person to believe? You hear from the natural healthcare community that artificial sweeteners are bad and then you hear from the FDA that artificial sweeteners are safe. Are we getting all worked up over nothing?

The fact that, on average in the US, men have a one-in-two lifetime risk of developing cancer and women a one-in-three risk is not what we would consider “nothing.” In 1999 cancer was the second leading cause of death in the US, exceeded only by heart disease. [National Institutes of Health and NCI Science Education Teachers Handbook Grades 9-12, 1999]

Cancer is now the number one cause of death. Billions of taxpayer dollars are used each year to fund cancer research. In fact, The NCI’s investment in kidney cancer research has increased from $19.2 million in fiscal year 2000 to an estimated $30.5 million in fiscal year 2005. This is only one type of cancer!

The Journal of American Medical Association [Vol. 283 No. 22, June 14, 2000] stated that “Although 5-year survival is a valid measure for comparing cancer therapies in a randomized trial, our analysis shows that changes in 5-year survival over time bear little relationship to changes in cancer mortality. Instead, they appear primarily related to changing patterns of diagnosis.” Basically, they may be detecting it earlier with their “testing” but overall outcome (death) is virtually unchanged.

We have increased consumption of artificial sweeteners over the last 70 years, greatly increased funding of cancer research, cancer diagnosis continues to rise as well as mortality rates. Still think we’re getting all worked up over “nothing?” Please don’t misinterpret… artificial sweeteners aren’t the only culprit in the cancer battle.

Simple logic: are you losing weight?

The pressing issue is the fact that artificial sweeteners have not helped us keep our weight down. According to Consumers’ Research Magazine, “There is no clear-cut evidence that sugar substitutes are useful in weight reduction. On the contrary, there is some evidence that these substances may stimulate appetite.”

In fact, it was found in research funded by the National Institute of Child Health and Development, National Institute of Digestive Diseases and Kidney Disorders and Purdue School of Liberal Arts that drinking diet soft drinks might actually be part of the problem. Professors in the Department of Psychological Sciences found that artificial sweeteners may interfere with the body’s natural ability to “count” calories.

Are you starting to get worked up over “nothing?” You decide… Are artificial sweeteners safe? Send me an e-mail at [email protected] and vote “Yes, they are safe” or “No, they are not safe.”

1. This article is for educational purposes only.

2. Your individual health status and any required healthcare treatments can only be properly addressed by a professional healthcare provider. We encourage you to make your own healthcare decisions based upon your research and in partnership with a qualified healthcare professional of your choice.


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