Using artificial sweeteners to avoid weight gain raises the risk of future health problems, according to a new study.
If you have Hashimoto’s low thyroid, it’s important to avoid artificial and toxic chemicals as much as possible.
The study found that aspartame and sucralose don’t prevent weight gain and they raise the risk of disease in regular users.
Some research also shows long term artificial sweetener use causes weight gain.
About one quarter of children and over 40 percent of adults in the U.S. consume artificial sweeteners daily.
Some people believe they are better for their health. Others unwittingly consuming them hidden in food products.
The FDA has received thousands of complaints about artificial sweeteners and scientific studies have raised concern. When you are managing autoimmune Hashimoto’s low thyroid, it’s important to relieve the toxic burden on your body as much as possible. Avoiding artificial sweeteners is one vital way to do this.
Artificial sweeteners hidden in foods
If you’re used to eating packaged foods, avoiding artificial sweeteners may be difficult when you have Hashimoto’s low thyroid as they are hiding in a variety of foods. These products are not always clearly labeled and may even claim “natural ingredients.” Always read labels.
Of course, expect to find artificial sweeteners in foods labeled “light,” “reduced sugars,” “diet,” and “sugar-free.” They also are found in “smart” popcorn, granola bars, yogurt, and even a popular pediatric electrolyte drink.
When you have Hashimoto’s low thyroid eat whole foods and avoid artificial additives.
Artificial sweeteners linked to obesity; disease
Studies show long term use of artificial sweeteners is associated with weight gain and diseases such as diabetes and heart disease.
In one study, participants who used artificial sweeteners along with a weight loss diet showed a slight increase in body mass index, a 14 percent higher chance of developing type 2 diabetes, and a 32 percent higher chance of developing heart disease.
Lobbyists and researchers agree other variables need to be considered and more studies conducted.
Of course, weight gain is often a problem for those with Hashimoto’s low thyroid, although managing the thyroid autoimmunity often excess weight to drop. This management includes avoiding additives such as artificial sweeteners.
How artificial sweeteners cause weight gain
Researchers believe fake sweeteners lead to weight gain and health risks is because they trigger sugar cravings that a person eventually loses out to.
It’s also theorized that eating foods with artificial sweeteners leads a person to feel “virtuous” and thereby more likely to overindulge later.
Animal studies show artificial sweeteners fool the brain into thinking you’ve eaten sugar, thus triggering inflammatory cascades and disease.
Artificial sweeteners also alter the gut bacteria in a way that promotes obesity and diabetes.
Healthy gut bacteria is especially important when working to manage the autoimmune component of Hashimoto’s low thyroid.
Functional medicine and Hashimoto’s hypothyroidism
In functional medicine, we regularly see people lose their cravings for sugar and starchy carbs when they eat a whole foods diet that stabilizes blood sugar, lowers inflammation, and promotes brain health. You won’t feel the desire to regular use artificial sweeteners when you don’t crave sweets in the first place.
Ask my office how we can help you manage your Hashimoto’s low thyroid.
How to learn if you have Hashimoto’s low thyroid
Many patients are not diagnosed with hypothyroidism or Hashimoto’s until after several years and going through several doctors. It is a demoralizing journey richly illustrated in my book The Truth About Low Thyroid: Stories of Hope and Healing for Those Suffering With Hashimoto’s Low Thyroid Disease, through real-life stories from patients in my practice. Managing Hashimoto’s goes far beyond using thyroid medication as you must work to stop the immune system from attacking the thyroid. For more information on identifying and managing Hashimoto’s low thyroid, contact my office.
About Dr. Josh Redd, Chiropractic Physician — Utah, Arizona, New Mexico functional medicine
Dr. Joshua J. Redd, DC, MS, DABFM, DAAIM, author of The Truth About Low Thyroid: Stories of Hope and Healing for Those Suffering With Hashimoto’s Low Thyroid Disease, is a chiropractic physician and the founder of RedRiver Health and Wellness Center with practices in Utah, Arizona, and New Mexico. He sees patients from around the world who suffer from challenging thyroid disorders, Hashimoto’s disease, and other autoimmune conditions. In addition to his chiropractic degree, Dr. Redd has a BS in Health and Wellness, a BS in Anatomy, and a MS in Human Nutrition and Functional Medicine. He speaks across the nation, teaching physicians about functional blood chemistry, low thyroid, Hashimoto’s, and autoimmunity. You can join his Facebook page here.