I wanted to write a quick post on a topic I am asked about on a regular basis.
Second to the ‘Big Carb Lie’ I feel this is the biggest misconception in the ‘diet’ world. Of course I am talking about artificial sweeteners and fats. You know yourself if you are a marketing sheep. I apologise for calling you sheep, I honestly do not blame you for getting suckered in to the ‘low-fat’ ‘low-calorie’ ‘sugar-free’ tornado that is tearing through our society. Everywhere you look there is Light this, Low that and Fat Free butter. Guess what Einstein..BUTTER IS FAT!! And a healthy source of fat also (clarified and grass-fed preferably). Now I know it is hard to believe that the media could lie so outright. Like Beyonce’s Booty really doesn’t have any cellulite, or Cheryl Cole really uses L’oreal home hair dye kit.. of course the media doesn’t lie.
Now I’ve got that off my chest let’s get into the comment I hear most frequently on this subject.. “If these artificial additives are so bad, why are they on our shelves and promoted as good for you?’ The answer to that is simple, and the same for every single fad diet pill, drop, shake, sugar alternative. They have paid out a lot of money to be there! These chemical formulas have been created by the manufacturer and tested rigorously by doctors and food standard bodies, all of which are paid for by… the manufacturer! Every single experiment will have been picked away at to find the part which suit them and will sell the products. We will look into the main offender, but just remember that are all as bad as each other and should never be a part of our diet. So, Aspartame. It took 16 years to get aspartame approved for production. The data provided by the manufacturers of aspartame was so flawed that there was a criminal prosecution against them by the FDA. It is the most studied product on the market in history and the only reason, I believe, it is still on the market today is due to lack of time, in 20-30 years when the long term effects of a lifetime of aspartame poisoning is evident I am positive it will be illegal. Listen to this.. a 74 body study carried out by the manufacturers of aspartame found 100% showed no side effects from consuming aspartame. A study from an independent body tested 90 people and a massive 90% showed negative side effects to aspartame poisoning from headaches to migraines to seizures and more.
I could go on forever about how while testing on rats the manufacturers would feed little bits of aspartame to the control group of rats to try and cover up the dramatic seizures and cancers these rats were growing, or how rats were reported as alive with no side effects when they were actually dead, or how when liquid aspartame is stored in temperatures above 85 degrees Fahrenheit, it breaks down into DKP and formaldehyde, both of which are known toxins. But the real topic I want to cover in this post is the psychological effects of eating fat free sugar free foods and drinks.
Aspartame is 180 times sweeter than sugar and yet has NO calories.Now, my guess is that if you do buy these diet products, you are probably conscious about your weight and want to do what you can to stay/get into shape, so you would think these products are great. WRONG! All they will achieve is making your weight loss/maintenance a million times harder for a few reasons;
As aspartame (and similar products) are so much sweeter than sugar they produce a seriously unnatural hormone response. Firstly the suppression of serotonin. Once consumed aspartame heads straight for the brain and the phenylalanine disrupts serotonin levels, thus suppressing/blocking the feeling of fullness and stimulating the hunger and food cravings. Secondly the massive release of insulin and leptin hormones (similar to any sugar consumption) then tell your body to store more fat. So not only are you ready to store whatever goes in, you are starting a huge bitch fight between your brain and another 20 cupcakes, which, lets be honest, the cake will probably win, because even if you have 100 sugar free cakes, as far as your brain is concerned, you have still not satisfied its sugar craving.
Not only does aspartame make the cravings even more irresistible, they make even healthy choices taste bland. If your taste buds are used to 180x the sweetness of sugar you will never be able to appreciate the delicious sweetness from a strawberry or apple, the real sweet food we should be treating ourselves to.
The same goes for full fat or low fat dairy, butter over margarine (aka spreadable plastic) and anything else under the ‘diet food’ umbrella.You need to address your issues with sugar and break the ties you have. Opting for the low calorie alternative is not going to make your life easier. See my previous post about carbohydrates to delve deeper into the sugar demons.
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