For many people who have problems with weight, diabetes, or any other issues, the words “sugar free” might seem like a godsend. After all, what could be better for you than not adding more sugar into your system? Unfortunately, many sugar free items have their own issues.
A major issue with sugar free items is what they’re sweetened with if not sugar. There is no one universally accepted choice, which means the market is open to almost anything. It sometimes seems like every week there’s a new supplement out that’s supposed to be healthier than the last one.
One sugar substitute that’s universally agreed upon that can cause some people problems are what’s known as sugar alcohols. These aren’t alcohols that are associated with drinking. They’re naturally occurring alcohols from plants. Many people like them because they don’t tend to leave an after taste like some other sugar substitutes. However, not everyone’s bodies can fully absorb these alcohols. This can lead to severe bloating and gas, which can be painful. The way to identify them in foods and drinks is to look for ingredients that end in “ol.” These are the most common, although there are some others that might slip by.
Another issue is this constant issue about whether or not some of these sugar substitutes can cause cancer. This one is almost ridiculous because, from what most studies seem to conclude, it might be possible for someone to get cancer, but the amount they’d have to consume in order to get cancer is more than one person could consume in a lifetime.
Another issue is whether sugar free actually promotes good health or not. None of the sugar substitutes have any real nutritional value to them. This means that they’re still empty calories. Also, consumers tend to believe that if something is sugar free that they can take in as much as they want to without any worries about anything else. Overconsumption of anything isn’t good, which many people should know but probably don’t think about.
If that wasn’t enough, sugar free items are now being linked to other issues. One study said too much chewing gum that contains sorbitol can cause bowel issues such as diarrhea. High fructose corn syrup, used to sweeten things such as bread, has been said to potential cause not only weight gain, but heart problems. Aspartame has been said to potentially turn into formaldehyde and cause brain tumors.
The main thing is that, whatever you choose, use it in small quantities and you shouldn’t have any real problems whatsoever.