'Aspartame is one of the most widely used artificial sweeteners on the market. Sold under the brand names “Nutrasweet” and “Equal,” it has made its way into kitchens and restaurants across America, and is a popular choice for “calorie-free” sweetening endeavors across the food industry. Aspartame is lauded for its near-zero calorie status, with propagandist websites suggesting the sweetener is helping consumers with weight control, diabetes and even tooth decay. While no one would argue that over-consumption of sugar is a major public health problem in our modern world, there remains debate about whether not chemical sugar substitutes are the solution.
Indeed, there are many reasons to exercise caution around aspartame and other similar food additives, and the litany of potential adverse effects are certainly convincing enough.
Aspartame isn’t all its cracked up to be
Firstly, aspartame isn’t actually “calorie free.” It contains four calories per gram — which is roughly the same calories as sugar. It is, however, about 200 times sweeter, which means you can use less. Or at least, that’s how the theory goes.
As Sayer Ji, founder of Green Med Info, reports, many studies have shown that the purported benefits of aspartame, such as calorie control, do not actually contribute to the intended goal of weight loss. In animal models, routine consumption of sugar substitutes like aspartame has been found to cause weight gain instead of promoting weight loss.
Artificial sweeteners have also been linked to diabetes and heart disease. Combined with the risk of weight gain, and one might start wonder why these products even exist. After all, they carry all the same risks as regular sugar. Studies have replicated similar findings on the matter of artificial sweeteners over and over again.'
Read more: Why aspartame puts you at risk of a whole slew of adverse health effects
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