Food Is Not Your Enemy


Artificial Sweeteners Are Making You Sick and Fat

“Artificial sweeteners may disrupt the body’s ability to regulate blood sugar, causing metabolic changes that can be a precursor to diabetes, researchers are reporting.”

So began a recent article in The New York Times that delved into why it may not be the best idea to recommend artificial sweeteners as a way to help prevent and/or manage diabetes.

The researchers, using mice and then humans in their experiments, found that Sweet’N Low, Splenda, and Equal all altered the population of bacteria in the digestive system. And this altered “microbiome” then led to changes in the metabolism of glucose—the test subjects’ blood sugar rose higher after eating and decreased more slowly than it did prior to the introduction of the artificial sweeteners into their system. After only one week, the mice given the sweeteners developed a “marked intolerance to glucose,” which is the precursor to such conditions as metabolic syndrome and Type 2 diabetes. When the scientists gave the mice antibiotics to kill much of the bacteria in their digestive systems, their glucose intolerance disappeared.

More and more research is demonstrating just how important our gut bacteria is. The right mix of bacteria leads to a stronger immune system and better digestion, for instance, while the wrong bacteria can lead to illness and obesity.

To help the good bacteria proliferate in your gut, move away from not just artificial sweeteners but also sugar, poor-quality fats, junk food, and chemical additives to food; and eat more fermented foods like plain yogurt or kefir, veggies (green veggies in particular), fruits, healthy fats, lean protein, nuts, seeds, and whole grains. Your intestines—and your whole body—will thank you.



7 Surprising Things That Can Make You Gain Weight (and Most Aren’t Even Food!)

You eat veggies and whole grains. You hit the gym. You’ve got your portions under control. So what’s the deal with those last few stubborn pounds? Seven unexpected weight saboteurs could have something to do with it. Check out my first article on Glamour.com for more.



Cool, Now We Know When Haggis and Mallomars Were Invented

Check this out: Found this “food timeline” online that details when different foods first came into use and/or were invented. Rice and millet, for instance, have been eaten since before 17,000 B.C. (but brown rice didn’t hit the U.S. until the 1960s). Marshmallows have been around since 2,000 B.C. And seedless watermelon first entered the market in 1949. Plus, recipes!



Are Diet Coke and Diet Pepsi Poison?

I’ve been hearing for quite a while now about the evils of artificial sweeteners like aspartame. But this article by Dr. Gary G. Kohls is particularly enlightening, and takes a look at the role that none other than Donald Rumsfeld played in getting aspartame approved during the Reagan administration. 

Among the health problems that aspartame can cause are seizures, multiple sclerosis, headaches, lupus, insomnia, fibromyalgia, arthritis, depression, and anxiety. Given that recent studies have shown that artificial sweeteners tend to increase your appetite as well as your desire for sweets, think about whether your diet soda is really doing you any good.