Artificial sweeteners may not help boost your weight loss journey, says a recent study, published in the journal The BMJ. The findings also stated that there is not enough evidence on their safety. If you have planned to eliminate foods rich in sugars, salt, or fat by switching to food and drinks containing non-sugar sweeteners, you must read this. The scientists revealed that while several non-sugar sweeteners are approved for use, not much is known about their potential benefits and harms within acceptable daily intakes. The researchers also said that the evidence is often limited and conflicted, adding more to the confusion.
For the study, a team of European researchers analysed 56 studies comparing no intake or lower intake of non-sugar sweeteners with higher intake in healthy adults and children. Measures included weight, blood sugar (glycaemic) control, oral health, cancer, cardiovascular disease, kidney disease, mood and behaviour. Studies were assessed for bias and certainty of evidence. Overall, the results show that, for most outcomes, there seemed to be no statistically or clinically relevant differences between those exposed to non-sugar sweeteners and those not exposed, or between different doses of non-sugar sweeteners. For example, in adults, findings from a few small studies suggested small improvements in body mass index and fasting blood glucose levels with non-sugar sweeteners, but the certainty of this evidence was low.
The findings further revealed that lower intake of non-sugar sweeteners were associated with slightly less weight gain (-0.09 kg) than higher intakes, but again the certainty of this evidence was also very low to draw any concrete conclusions.
A smaller increase in body mass index score was seen in children who consumed non-sugar sweeteners compared with sugar, but intake of non-sugar sweeteners made no differences to body weight.
Strong evidence of effect of non-sugar sweeteners for overweight or obese adults or children actively trying to lose weight was also scarce.
4 Natural Sugar Alternatives:
Those who have just started ruling out sugar sources from their diet in bid to lose weight may start by opting for natural sugar alternatives. These natural sweeteners are not packed with empty calories that are found in regular sugar. Empty calories have no nutritional value and they go in your body and accumulate as fats.
Here Are 4 Natural Sugar Alternatives You Can Swap Sugar With:
- Maple Syrup
- Coconut Sugar
- Palm Sugar
Disclaimer: This content including advice provides generic information only. It is in no way a substitute for qualified medical opinion. Always consult a specialist or your own doctor for more information. NDTV does not claim responsibility for this information.