If you saw the recent 60 Minutes segment by Dr. Sanjay Gupta on the dangers of sugar, you might be scared off the sweet stuff for good. It causes heart disease, diabetes, obesity, and cancer and it makes super bad, super dense, super dangerous cholesterol particles. The data is pretty strong on this. Scientists even locked kids in a hospital, fed them sugar and measured their blood every 30 minutes. It didn't take long for things to turn bad inside.
But if you are thinking that diet soft drinks or artificial or even natural sweeteners are the answer for getting off sugar, think again. Diet drink consumption has increased 400 percent since 1960. It may or may not cause cancer, but the evidence is mounting that it leads to weight gain rather than weight loss. Those who consume diet drinks regularly have a 200 percent increased risk of weight gain, a 36 percent increased risk of pre-diabetes or metabolic syndrome, and a 67 percent increased risk of diabetes. A study of 400 people found that those who drank two diet sodas a day or more increased their waist size by five times.
Seems you can't outsmart Mother Nature. Tricking your brain into thinking you are getting something sweet plays dirty tricks on your metabolism. Artificial sweeteners disrupt the normal hormonal and neurological signals that control hunger and satiety (feeling full). A study of rats that were fed artificially sweetened food found that their metabolism slowed down and they were triggered to consume more calories and gain more weight than rats fed sugar-sweetened food.