Low Calorie Sweeteners Ineffective Against Weight Loss

People who try to shed off the excess pounds are led to believe that taking low-calorie sweeteners may be able to help. But recent studies have indicated that this may not be entirely true. In fact, recent research show that low-calorie sweeteners may even be a factor to increased body mass index as well as cardiometabolic risks.

A paper published in the Canadian Medical Association Journal has indicated that taking low-calorie sweeteners in place of natural sugar may not help you lose weight. The statement was based on the meta-analysis and a systematic review of a number of long-term, randomized controlled trials and cohort studies from different countries. Low-calorie or “nonnutritive” sweeteners, as the researchers call them, include popular ones like aspartame, sucralose, stevioside, and the like. It is not known what the effects of long-term consumption of these sweeteners are. So the researchers went on to try and seek out evidence from prospective studies to determine of regular consumption can lead to long-term adverse effects.

After analyzing randomized controlled trials that involve nonnutritive sweetener consumption, the researchers found out that it did not have any meaningful effect on BMI levels. In some of the cohort studies, low-calorie sweetener consumption was even linked to an increase in BMI, as well as weight and weight circumference. Low-calorie sweetener intake was also linked to a higher incidence of obesity, hypertension, diabetes, metabolic syndrome and cardiovascular events.

And since the statements were based on meta-analysis of previous studies linked to low-calorie sweetener consumption, further studies may be needed in order to determine the underlying cause behind the findings. This might also be needed to also find out about the long-term risks of consuming low-calorie sweeteners or even the possible benefits.

Source: CMAJ