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Why Splenda (Sucralose) is Not So Splendid

This past weekend, my son set up a Cotton Candy stand during our neighborhood block party. Cotton Candy, of course, is spun sugar with food coloring. And I don’t have a problem with “sugar.”

Yeah, you heard me right: I don’t have a problem with eating sugar!

I don’t mean we should have all sugar, all the time. Certainly not! Everything in moderation, and sweets are best eaten after a healthy meal to minimize the glycemic rush. But when it comes to choices of sweeteners, I don’t have much of a problem with cane sugar. It’s the other stuff, the sugar substitutes, that will kill ya’.

I arrived late to the party to hear the report that, while the Cotton Candy machine instructions claimed you could make your own sugar base for cotton candy with sugar and some powdered drink mix for flavoring/color, the mixture did not produce the sticky webs of candy as promised. I surmised that the problem was the drink mix: the container screamed that it contained “1/2 the sugar” as the regular mix.

Aaaahhhh… the well-meaning adult who chose this type of drink mix in the mistaken belief that less-sugar must equal better-for-you. We have all been hoodwinked by the artificial sweetener industry, and we should be outraged.

The marketing promises of “Less sugar!”, “Zero calories!”, and “Sugar free!” send me running scared down supermarket aisles. Think about it: They are telling you that they removed the sugar, yet you are still expecting the product to be sweet-tasting. Translation: The product is artificially sweetened using a chemically-created sweetener such as Nutrasweet/Aspartame, Saccharine, or Splenda, for example.

In fact, our drink mix listed sucralose. And it didn’t spin like sugar.

Yep, the claim that Splenda (sucralose) is derived from sugar, and therefore is as safe for human consumption as sugar, is so off-base that the sugar industry is suing Splenda for deceptive marketing practices (I have not been able to determine the current status, but they went to court in January of this year).

Splenda’s core ingredient is a nonnutritive sweetener that does not grow in sugar fields or appear elsewhere naturally. Rather, the core ingredient, sucralose, is manufactured in laboratories as a synthetic compound. Despite its similar-sounding name, sucralose is not the same thing as sucrose, the technical name for pure table sugar.

Guess who markets Splenda? Johnson & Johnson, the subject of another recent post of mine concerning toxic chemicals in baby shampoo. Interesting how J&J want to position themselves as a family-friendly company, yet the more we learn the more they resemble the evil Monsanto in terms of spreading toxins.

Sucralose belongs to a class of compounds known as organochlorides (or chlorocarbons). Some organochlorides are toxic to plants or animals, including humans.

Rushed to market, the FDA approved Splenda for human consumption based on a number of animal studies and only a couple, very short-term (days-long) studies involving humans. There is no way yet that scientists can know what the long-term effects of Splenda are on the human body, but we should know enough by now to assume that they aren’t beneficial or life-giving. In fact, Splenda is chemically more similar to DDT than to sugar.

A Duke university study found evidence that high doses of Splenda (up to 1000 mg/kg) reduced the amount of good bacteria in the intestines of rats by up to 50%, increases the pH level in the intestines, contributes to increases in body weight and affects the P-glycoprotein (P-gp) in the body in such a way that crucial health-related drugs could be rejected. (Abou-Donia MB, El-Masry EM, Abdel-Rahman AA, McLendon RE, Schiffman SS (2008). “Splenda alters gut microflora and increases intestinal p-glycoprotein and cytochrome p-450 in male rats”. J. Toxicol. Environ. Health Part A 71 (21): 1415–29. doi:10.1080/15287390802328630. PMID 18800291.)

I bolded the line above to highlight that Splenda and other artificial sweeteners actually contribute to weight gain rather than accelerate weight loss. See the extent of our brainwashing?

Give me real sugar over a sugar substitute any day. Even better, make it organic, raw cane sugar.

12 Comments on “Why Splenda (Sucralose) is Not So Splendid

  1. You my friend are absolutely unqualified to even be in this discussion. Hope your scare tactics gave you a surge of nasty pride to feast on. Come back when you are struggling with diabetes and looking for a glimpse of dietary relief. Been on it 2 decades and so far – excellent results for me and my associates. Adios

    1. Agreed. This lady is nonsensical. This biased article holds zero worth. Sucralose is fabulous.

  2. I love Sucralose! Too many people have the wrong information on it and are spreading it all over the web. Splenda is NOT Sucralose. Splenda is 60% dextrose, 39% Maltodextrose and only 1% Sucralose.

    I use pure Sucralose in things like my supplement drinks. A tiny little drop or two is all you need. No insulin spike, no fat storage.

    There are over 20 years of human research done of Sucralose and not one fatality has been found. Sugar on the other hand, WE KNOW has kill plenty of people and more people have been turning into diabetics because of it.

    Sugar is a multi-billion dollar a year industry and those who are in that industry will spend mega-bucks to destroy the artificial sweetener industry to continue profiting.

    If you’re worried about the artificial sweeteners being bad for your health, I suggest you worry more about the air we breath because it is MUCH MORE damaging to your health than Sucralose. What doesn’t kill you will only make you stronger.

    1. I agree. I am a diabetic abd when I find a product that can make my life seem normal I will take it. Let him go to a carnival and drool watching someone eat a giant cotton candy. All you can think is, “Can I make this at home for myself sugar free?” Keep eating your natural sugar dude. I wouldn’t wish this condition on anybody!!

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  5. Will Diet Coke kill you? Let me just give you the example of the 6-pack-a-day Diet Coke drinker who now has scleroderma and is watching his body harden from the outside in. Excrutiating.

    What Diet Coke won’t do: It won’t hydrate you, nourish you, help you lose weight or keep weight off. It won’t make you smarter or increase brain function.

    The only thing Diet Coke is good for is adding chemicals to your body. Sorry if that sounds harsh, but there’s no better way to say it.

    If you must drink soda, I always recommend switching to one of the natural sodas, like Blue Sky. 🙂

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