Sucralose – Buyer Beware!

Recently I’ve been reading (more like skimming) 🙂 a book called Skinny B*tch. And while I do not condone the use of the profanity in the book, they make some really good points regarding nutrition.

In the book there is a chapter called “Sugar is the Devil” where they expose the negative side-effects of sugar and artificial sweeteners. As I started looking at the list of sweeteners that they were exposing, some stood right out to me.  I was familiar with artificial sweeteners like apartame (which is in products like NutraSweet and Equal) and saccharin (which is in Sweet & Low). But there was one sweetener that I was not familiar with – sucralose.

What is Sucralose?

splenda- sucralose

Sucralose is the sweetener in Splenda. I had heard of Splenda but not sucralose. Sucralose, according to the manufacturers, does not break down in the body therefore it is “non-caloric.” The makers also claim that it is safe for diabetics because of its lack of calories and according to the FDA, sucralose is 98% pure. But what about the other 2%?

This is where it gets scary. The other 2% (the part that they don’t want you to pay attention to) contains small amounts of the heavy metals methanol and arsenic! “I’ll have a grande expresso with a dash of arsenic please.” What?! And they actually let people buy this stuff? (That debate can be saved for another day).

In addition to the hidden ingredients in sucralose, it has also been found to cause diarrhea, organ damage, swelling of the liver and kidneys and a decrease in fetal body weight. Splendid!

So What. I Don’t Use Splenda or Sucralose.

As I was reading this section on sugar I thought to myself, “I’m safe. I don’t use artificial sweeteners in anything.” Boy was I wrong. These artificial sweeteners are hidden in a TON of products! Everything from cereals to soft drinks and even nutritional supplements. Wait. What? There are toxic sweeteners in “nutrition” products? Yes!

Hidden Sucralose – Read the Labels

One of the biggest culprits of artificial sweeteners are protein shakes. As guys, we love our protein. But fellas, please do me a favor and start reading the labels. Most of the big “name-brand” protein shakes contain one or more of these sweeteners. One of the most popular ones, Muscle Milk, contains sucralose as its sweetener.

So the next time you are in GNC or Vitamin Shoppe looking for a nutrition supplement, read the label. Make sure it does not contain any sucralose, aspartame or any other artificial sweeteners.

After reading through this section on artificial sweeteners I was pleased to find that the protein powder and post-workout recovery drink that I use does not contain any artificial sweeteners. Phew!

So now that you know the dangers of sucralose and other artificial sweeteners, you have an assignment. Go through your cupboards and find products that contain these sweeteners and toss ’em out and enjoy a healthier, happier life.

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