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To Your Health

Splenda of an Idea

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03/01/2009 - Hi there, I hope you don't mind my title for this month's article. I have been asked many questions concerning the topic of sweeteners. I am not a big fan of the sweeteners so I had to gather a few pages of "stuff". I hope this will provide you with the information necessary for you to make the right decision about your next cup of coffee or glass of tea.

First, what is it? Splenda is called Sucralose. Sucralose is made by taking three chlorine atoms and adding them to a molecule of sugar. Sounds great except for a tiny little problem -- chlorine reacts with organic matter (Hey, that's us!) to create chlorination by-products. These by-products may trigger chronic symptoms like fatigue, headaches, brain fog, as well as reproductive and immune problems.

Sucralose is consumed more by women than men. It's in roughly 4000 different food products, and is growing at about 10% in consumption annually. I found a research paper recently published in the Journal of Toxicology and Environmental Health 2008. The study was conducted at Duke University by Dr.s Mohamed B. Abou-Donia, Eman M. El-Masry, Ali A. Abdel-Rahman, Roger E. McLendon and Susan S. Schiffman. The researchers bought Splenda at the supermarket and gave various dosages to rats that were below or near the accepted adult daily consumption given by the FDA. The study was consistent with FDA protocols for extrapolating results in rat studies to human consumption. Here were their findings and comments:

"The lowest Splenda dose showed significant increase in body weight gain during and after Splenda supplementation."

"The total micro flora in the gut began to decrease immediately after the beginning of oral administration of Splenda."

"Highest doses of Splenda produced significant reduction in gut micro flora ranging from 47.4% to 79.7% of control." (Yikes!)

"Increases in pH values were significant"

James Turner of Citizens for Health summarized the research. "Although the effect of consuming Splenda does not result from a one time use, the side effects do occur after accumulated use. A person eating two slices of cake and drinking two cups of coffee containing Splenda would ingest enough sucralose to affect the P-glycoprotein, while consuming just seven little Splenda packages reduces good bacteria."

Conc1usion: Disruption in the number and state of intestinal micro flora may potentially interfere with many essential gut functions including nutrient metabolism, normal immune system function, gastrointestinal mobility, inhibition of pathogens, vitamin synthesis, and metabolism in drugs. Splenda suppresses beneficial bacteria and directly interferes with the bioavailability of drugs and nutrients at doses that are approved by the FDA for use in the food supply.

Sooooo, you want to know what I think? Hmmm. I'll see You next month.

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