Still using Splenda as your sweetener of choice? It is the most versatile and widely used artificial sweetener. However, as is often the case, popularity of a product does not indicate that it is safe.
Over the years since Splenda’s discovery, much research and thousands of consumer complaints have documented Splenda’s danger. Here are the top 10 (and then some more) reasons why Splenda is the wrong choice.
What is Splenda?
Splenda is the brand name of sucralose or 1,6-dichloro-1,6-dideoxy-BETA-D-fructofuranosyl-4-chloro-4-deoxy-alpha-D-galactopyranoside. However, that scary, chemical name just does not market well. So, the manufacturer went with Splenda.
It is marketed as a form of sugar. However, it is quite far from anything natural. It starts with sucrose, adds some chlorine, and then ends up as an artificial chemical. As a result, sucralose is more like the highly toxic pesticide DDT than sugar. In fact, sucralose has many of the same chemical effects of DDT.
Top 10 Reasons to Stop Using Splenda Now
1. Baking With Splenda Produces Cancer-Causing Chemicals
Do you use Splenda for baking? If so, you may as well bake cancer cakes. When sucralose is heated with food, as in baking or cooking, carcinogenic dioxin compounds are formed. This is reported in the Journal of Toxicology and Environmental Health.
The World Health Organization (WHO) lists dioxins among the world’s most dangerous pollutants. In Dioxins and their effects on human health, WHO states:
Dioxins are environmental pollutants. They belong to the so-called “dirty dozen” – a group of dangerous chemicals known as persistent organic pollutants (POPs). Dioxins are of concern because of their highly toxic potential. Experiments have shown they affect a number of organs and systems.”
Wow! Splenda – the most popular artificial sweetener – doesn’t sound so safe, does it?
2. Sucralose Increases Risk of Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBS)
Research reported in the the World Journal of Gastroenterology reported that ulcerative colitis and Crohn’s disease increased with increased consumption of sucralose.
3. Splenda Promotes Diabetes
This was recently documented in the research journal, Diabetes Care, in the study, Sucralose affects glycemic and hormonal responses to an oral glucose load. Even a single dose of sucralose (Splenda) lead to increased blood sugar, a 20% increase in insulin levels, and a 7% decrease in insulin clearance, an indication of decreased insulin sensitivity.
4. Splenda Also Worsens Diabetes
Maybe you are using Splenda because you are already diabetic and want to avoid sugar. However, it has been shown to increase glycosylation of hemoglobin in diabetics. That is, it raises your A1c (HbA1c) levels.
5. Splenda Triggers Migraines
A 2006 report published in the journal, Headache, warned physicians that sucralose can trigger migraine headaches.
6. Splenda Harms Beneficial Gut Flora and Gastrointestinal Health
This was reported in a 2008 study in the Journal of Toxicology and Environmental Health. Researchers found that the administration of sucralose to rats at a dose far below the US FDA Acceptable Daily intake level resulted in a decrease in the numbers of a wide range of beneficial gut bacteria as well as numerous adverse effects in the gastrointestinal tract.
7. Sucralose Damages the Spleen
Sucralose reduces the weight of the spleen. What does the spleen do? Some may think that it is as mysterious as what the fox says. However, the spleen is actually a very important organ that filters your blood and removes old red blood cells. This is not a function that you want to have diminished!
8. Sucralose Damages the Thymus Gland
Reported in Food and Chemical Toxicology, sucralose toxicity damages your thymus gland. The thymus gland is an important organ of your immune system. It produces a hormone that stimulates the production of disease-fighting T-cells. The thymus also matures T-cells. T-cells are a type of white blood cell that help your immune system kill viruses and cancer cells. Stopping use of Splenda now will improve your body’s natural cancer fighting and flu fighting abilities!
9. Splenda Causes DNA Damage
A report in Mutation Research determined that 39 currently used food additives, including sucralose, caused genotoxicity in certain gastrointestinal organs. That is, they damaged the DNA in those organs.
10. Sucralose Causes Kidney Damage
Calcification of your kidneys and other pelvic organs is certainly not the result you expect from sprinkling Splenda on your food and beverages every day! Renal mineralization–a ubiquitous lesion in chronic rat studies, is the scientific study that showed that sucralose causes bowel enlargement, kidney mineralization, and abnormal pelvic tissue changes in rats.
The dangerous health problems with Splenda go far beyond this Top 10 list. Truly the negative health effects are numerous and highly concerning, to say the least. Here are several other harmful effects associate with sucralose:
- Stimulates appetite, cravings, and weight gain
- Altered gene expression
- Increase rate of spontaneous abortion
- Maternal and fetal toxicity
- Reduced growth rate
- Decreased red blood cell count (anemia)
- Increased intestinal pH levels
- Interference with absorption and effects of medications
- Anxiety, seizures, dizziness, blurred vision
- Allergic reactions
- Joint aches or pains
Safe & Natural Alternatives
It is abundantly clear the Splenda must be eliminated if you desire to protect your health and achieve wellness. However, that does not mean that you are destined to bland foods and unsweetened teas and coffees for the rest of your life. There are several natural sweeteners that have been time tested and do not cause these damaging effects.
Honey – honey is a great natural sweetener that also has many amazing health benefits.
Xylitol – Xylitol is a zero calorie, sugar derivative, natural sweetener. Xylitol has been shown to provide protection from dental caries (cavities) as well as several other health promoting benefits.
If you are still using Splenda, I hope that this information will empower you to stop. There are several other safe alternatives that do not damage your health.