Women's health discussion
forums, research news and
women's health issues.
DISCUSSION FORUMS...

Trying To Conceive

Surviving Miscarriage

Overcoming Infertility

Reproductive Health

General Health

Contraception

Pregnancy

Parenting

Babies and Toddlers

Relationships

Mental Health

Diet & Weight


ARTICLES ABOUT...

Relationships

Sexual Dysfunction

Looking Good

STDs

Men

Contraception

Reproductive Health

Conceiving

Pregnancy

Incontinence

Mental Health

Children's Health

Eating Well

Healthy Living

Supplements

Menopause

Weight Issues

Breast Cancer

Custom Search

11 February 2008
Artificial Sweeteners Can Cause Weight Gain

Researchers from Purdue University have laboratory evidence that the widespread use of no-calorie sweeteners may actually make it harder for people to control their intake and body weight.

In one experiment using rats, the researchers compared the consumption of yogurt sweetened with glucose (sugar) and yogurt sweetened with zero-calorie saccharin. They found that the rats eating the artificial sweetener consumed more calories, gained more weight, put on more body fat, and didn't make up for it by cutting back later.

Researchers Susan Swithers and Terry Davidson surmised that by breaking the connection between a sweet sensation and high-calorie food, the use of saccharin changes the body's ability to regulate intake. That change depends on experience. Problems with self-regulation might explain in part why obesity has risen in parallel with the use of artificial sweeteners. It also might explain why, says Swithers, scientific consensus on human use of artificial sweeteners is inconclusive, with various studies finding evidence of weight loss, weight gain or little effect. Because people may have different experiences with artificial and natural sweeteners, human studies that don't take into account prior consumption may produce a variety of outcomes.

The study also measured changes in core body temperature. Normally, when we prepare to eat, the metabolic engine revs up. However, rats that had been trained to respond using saccharin (which broke the link between sweetness and calories), relative to rats trained on glucose, showed a smaller rise in core body temperate after eating a novel, sweet-tasting, high-calorie meal. The authors think this blunted response both led to overeating and made it harder to burn off sweet-tasting calories.

"The data clearly indicate that consuming a food sweetened with no-calorie saccharin can lead to greater body-weight gain and adiposity than would consuming the same food sweetened with a higher-calorie sugar," the study, published in Behavioral Neuroscience, noted.

The authors acknowledge that this outcome may not come as welcome news to health-care practitioners, who have long recommended low- or no-calorie sweeteners. But they note that their findings match emerging evidence that people who drink more diet drinks are at higher risk for obesity and metabolic syndrome.

Other artificial sweeteners - such as aspartame, sucralose and acesulfame K - which also taste sweet but do not predict the delivery of calories, could have similar effects, say the researchers.

Related:
How Low-Carb Diets Suppress Hunger
The Hidden Danger Of Low-Fat Foods
Healthy Eating Tied To Body Acceptance

Source: American Psychological Association


Discussion Forums     About Us     Privacy
Your use of this website indicates your agreement to our terms of use.
2002 - 2013 Aphrodite Women's Health and its licensors. All rights reserved.