Chewing Gum, Bloated Stomachs and Flawed Studies.
I keep reading studies that are showing up in PubMed, Medline & Springer that group artificial sweeteners with sugar and HFCS but they’re missing the boat with something important that no one seems to be catching; the participants “over all diet”. I’ll come right back to this.
When the plumber walks in to a gym to fix the boiler, he won’t necessarily experience any impact from a biochemical standpoint. When your local bodybuilder walks in for leg day, the mere sight of the equipment fires up a set of reactions, one of which in an actual rise in blood sugar, preparing the body even before he’s started his warm up squat.
When I walk in to Morton’s and smell the steaks, my mouth begins to water, ghrelin (the hunger hormone) gets released and, most importantly, my body begins to release a very slight amount of insulin. I say “slight” because I don’t consume any sugar whatsoever. When a vegetarian walks in, one that hasn’t touched meat in 20 years, and despises the thought of meat, his response would be similar to the sedentary plumber walking in to the gym; nothing (unless he knows he’s making a lot of money from the service call, which in this case, dopamine gets released).
What about gum? When I chew gum, my body does very little because it knows by now, after years of not eating sugar, that regardless of what food I digest, they’ll never be a dangerous influx of blood glucose requiring it produce massive and toxic amounts of insulin. And yes, I said toxic, as toxins, by definition, are compounds produced by mammals. But what about the person that drinks a diet soda or chews a sugar free stick of gum? How do you think their body would respond to the “trick” that’s being played on it? The mouth keeps chewing and chewing, the tongues millions of taste receptors keep receiving “sugar signals” yet there’s nothing for the insulin flooding the bloodstream to “bind to”. This is where the damage begins.
All the studies that claim diet products have the same damaging effects as those loaded with sugar are neglecting to take the participant’s lifestyle in to account. If you lead a sugar free life, the effects of sugar free products, like Splenda or Stevia, are negligible at worst. If you chew gum and experience any bloating or growling, your body doesn’t appreciate you playing David Copperfield with it. Get it?
At the end of the day, you need to either lead a no-added sugar lifestyle (say goodbye to orange juice and Pepsi), or stop making believe, thinking a diet soda will save you after you’ve banged down a pint of Häagen–Dazs.
This article has references omitted as it was written on an iPhone while sitting in H-Mart eating sashimi. More to follow.