COVID-19 Day 10: Splaning Splenda Resistance

 

Deep diving scientific papers on COVID-19 I’ve come across other some other interesting studies. Yay, science. A new study shows consuming sucralose (Splenda) sweetened drinks with carbs suppresses insulin sensitivity (Insulin Resistance). This may help explain why drinking “diet drinks” doesn’t help people lose weight.

NYC and other municipalities have passed “soda” taxes aimed at curbing sugary drink consumption. Many people have turned to “diet drinks” as an alternative because their sweeteners aren’t metabolized as sugars in the body. Yet, obesity rates in the country continue to rise. Some doctors and scientist have theorized that “diet” sweeteners may not just trick your taste buds but also trick your body into gaining fat.

The food you eat is converted by your gut and liver into glucose—a simple sugar. The cells in your body combine the oxygen you breath with the glucose, to create the energy they need to perform their functions; like living. Insulin is a hormone produced in your pancreas that regulates how much glucose your cells take in.

Insulin resistance occurs when your cells ignore the insulin hormone signal (possibly as a defense mechanism due to mitochondria damage) and resist taking in glucose. Sensing the extra glucose in the blood stream, the pancreas compensates by producing more insulin. Your liver also responds to the insulin signal and converts the extra glucose into fats, which is stored in your body. Insulin resistance is an underlying cause for fat gain and obesity.

The study details experiments on Yale students showing a short-term suppression of insulin sensitivity when the subjects were given drinks sweetened with a mixture of sucralose and sugar. But the effect did not occur in the subjects given sucralose sweetened drinks, or when subjects given sugar sweetened drinks alone.

The experiments did not test other  “diet” sweeteners such as saccharine, aspartame (Equal), or stevia extract. But based on their evidence, the authors strongly discourage people from consuming diet drinks WITH meals or snacks. The experiments indicate that you could wait 2hrs before mixing diet drinks and carbs, so good luck with that.

Looks like I’m just going back to drinking water and putting sugar in my coffee.


SOURCES
https://www.cell.com/cell-metabolism/fulltext/S1550-41312030057-7

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5519190/

https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/insulin-and-insulin-resistance#basics

https://www.webmd.com/diabetes/insulin-resistance-syndrome

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3994704/

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