Friday, April 16, 2010

Artificial Sweeteners: Blue, Pink, and Yellow Packets

When I was little, treats or “sugars” in the house were sparse. When they were available all the siblings kept an eye on them to make sure whatever it was-it was evenly distributed. Over time, these sugar products became inexpensive and have infiltrated our homes. We have traded healthy snacks for desserts three plus times per day. And we got bigger and now obese. As smart Americans, we found a way to have this same sweet taste without the calories or sugar spikes that real sugar has. Yep, out of the production lines came diet drinks and those colorful packets-the artificial sweeteners.

We really have enjoyed them. But, as a society, did we get smaller and lose weight with these products? No. In fact, we have gotten bigger and many Americans are not only obese; but more and more Americans are now morbidly obese. Why is that? It’s because we crave the taste of it, not the calories. We crave tasting the sweet stuff. Thus, the more of the sweet taste, the more we crave.

No matter what it is, a diet drink or a coffee with artificial sweetener in it, once we have it – it turns on our craving for more…and the mental agony for the day starts. About every 2 hours or so you are not hungry; but, you physically feel you need something to feel better – or stop your craving. So you feed your withdrawal symptoms so you can go back to work and concentrate on what you were doing. You might get a pretzel, grab a small handful of M&Ms off someone’s desk, pop a peppermint in your mouth, snack on some popcorn, or consume anything that is a simple carbohydrate or sugar to get the craving gone….only to have it again 2 hours later. And each time you complete the mindless nibbling or increased consumption of simple carbs and sugars you are disappointed in yourself and don’t understand why you did it….because after you have fed the craving the urge or craving is resolved and you can once again think rationally. How could you have let yourself do that?

It’s simple. We do not recommend diet drinks, artificial sweeteners or simple sugars. Once you begin consuming these substances the battle begins. You have turned on the craving for the day and for the most part…you will fight it all day long. So avoid the battle, avoid the addiction…concentrate on lean protein and fruits and vegetables at each of your meals and for your snacks. Stay Healthy from the beginning of your day to the end.

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