In the beginning the birth of artificial sweeteners seemed like a god-sent gift for dieters and those cautious about their calorie intake. Unfortunately, more and more evidence keeps surfacing that points to it being too good to be true.
In fact, recent research from the Weizmann Institute of Science released September 2014, shows that eating artificial sweeteners may actually cause the exact health problems dieters are trying to avoid, plus some previously unknown. The study found that artificial sweeteners actually interfere with a individuals stomach microbial environment resulting in a metabolic changes similar to the ones associated with Diabetes and Obesity.
The research was a multi-pronged study involving mice and a small number of people who were observed eating diets high in the artificial sweetener, saccharin. The study was ran using mice and a small amount of people.
Of the seven humans, four developed impaired glucose metabolism. When a person has impaired glucose metabolism, they start having abnormally high glucose levels, which is a red flag for type 2 diabetes.
Previously it was believed that artificial sweeteners passed through the stomach undigested and that they had no effect on the bodies intestinal cells. However, this has been proven false by the study.
Research shows that the fake sweetener did in fact make an impact in the stomach, a big one. The microbe filaments that grow on intestinal cells in both human and mice were altered in the test subjects that were fed the saccharin. There were no alterations in the subjects fed plain glucose.
The test subjects that were fed saccharin also had abnormally high glucose levels in their blood after eating. When there is glucose in the body, it either gets used as fuel or stored as fat. However when glucose metabolism is impaired, guess which one the glucose is converted to? Fat.
More shocking still is that when the study concluded, mice subjects that were fed the artificial sweeteners developed impaired glucose metabolism within 5 weeks of the 11 week study, regardless of their diets otherwise. The mice were split into separate groups, one eating high fat diets, and one eating lean diets. The results were exactly the same: alterations in the microbial environment and impaired glucose metabolism resulting in high blood glucose levels.