Artificial sweeteners can still lead to obesity and diabetes, study claims

Artificial sweeteners can still lead to obesity and diabetes, study claims

"In our studies, both sugar and artificial sweeteners seem to exhibit negative effects linked to obesity and diabetes, albeit through very different mechanisms from each other", lead researcher Brian Hoffmann, assistant professor in the department of biomedical engineering at the Medical College of Wisconsin and Marquette University said in a statement. Other studies have shown that diet soda increases the risk of obesity, type 2 diabetes, and serious cardiovascular ailments like heart attacks.

However, a new study by a team of researchers from the Medical College of Wisconsin paints a darker picture of the much-loved artificial sweetener.

They wanted to understand how sugar and sweeteners impact the lining of blood vessels - the vascular endothelium - in both cell cultures and rats. The main problem with artificial sweeteners is the fact that they might not help people lose weight at all, and that they might even contribute to weight gain.

"Despite the addition of these non-caloric artificial sweeteners to our everyday diets, there has still been a drastic rise in obesity and diabetes", Hoffman said in a press release.

After three weeks, the detailed proteomics look into the rats' bloodstream showed more than 200 proteins significantly increased by the higher glucose intake.

The jury is still out on which is worse for health, sugar or artificial sweeteners, but these recent findings reflect what other experts have been saying in recent months.

He adds that doctors are now learning that artificial sweeteners may change bacteria in the gut which can lead to inflammation, insulin resistance, and pre-diabetes.

Researchers alternately treated rats with concentrated dosing of sugar (glucose) and substitutes - aspartame and acesulfame potassium, two chemical compounds popularly found in the branded sweeteners Equal and Sweet One, respectively. It is well known that high dietary sugar was linked to negative health outcomes and the study suggested artificial sweeteners did, too.

'We observed that in moderation, your body has the machinery to handle sugar; it is when the system is overloaded over a long period of time that this machinery breaks down'. Their study on rats found the sweeteners changed how the body processes fat and uses energy. A host of studies have shown that artificial sweeteners could be harmful for your health. The key here is not about which sugar is better, it's about consuming them with moderation. These studies include a new research presented at the yearly Experimental Biology conference this week.

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