I’m Addicted to Artificial Sweeteners

It has taken me about a month to get up the courage to commit to this post.

One of the ways I lost so much weight is that I started to rely very heavily on artificial sweeteners.  Very heavily.  To the point that some people would call it unhealthy.

I googled around last month and I found a video on Dr. Oz talking about a personal trainer who was addicted to artificial sweeteners, and realized that I actually drink/eat them more than she does. I drank Mio like it was going out of style. I bought industrial strength sucralose because I was literally sick of dealing with like 5 packets at a time for each cup of tea or coffee I drink (and I drink a lot). I bought industrial strength liquid sucralose and carried it in my purse. I drank Diet Soda every day. If there was a vegan sugar free thing – I bought it, and ate it. A lot of it.

So, that planted a seed.

Then, I came across this link that says animal studies show that aspartame blocks a gut enzyme, and that may be a link to why artificial sweeteners are linked with obesity and increased appetite.

I can tell you that I have days, weeks, where I am just stupendously, irrationally hungry, and it is a tremendous act of willpower to just. stop. eating.  I have days where I’m just eating all the time.  I try to make healthy choices, but it’s a really tough sensation to work through without gaining a ton of weight.

I suspect artificial sweeteners are artificially inflating my hunger. And I suspect they are impeding my results.

Okay, ready for some completely unsubstantiated scientific speculation?

I don’t know if it’s just artificial sweeteners, or all zero calorie sweeteners that may be doing this. But my guess is, even though Stevia is “natural” – it is still very heavily processed, and just because it’s a plant doesn’t mean it doesn’t act biologically through the same pathways that Splenda/sucralose does. Once your food is digested, I suspect your body doesn’t really care if your food started out at factory or from a plant. It’s all various combinations of the elements we can find on the periodic table, you know? So I don’t think substituting with Stevia, Monk Fruit, whatever, is a viable solution.

So.  Part of me really doesn’t want to do this, but I’m gonna. On January 1, I will throw away all zero calorie sweeteners, and do my best to avoid them in all of my food.

I just took a peek at my kitchen to see what is at stake. Due to the “Eat What Ya Got” diet I actually don’t have a lot of food in general. Beyond the pictured sweeteners, I also have about 10 packs of artificially sweetened gum, 4 bottles of flavored coffee syrup, 2 bottles of sugar free chocolate syrup, half of a bottle of sugar free maple syrup, and 2 packages of sugar free pudding. I was pleasantly surprised that all of the fat free salad dressing I bought didn’t appear to have any. Unfortunately, it appears that my protein powder does have stevia in it. I have about 2-3 months worth. So I am just thinking I will go through that and just replace it with an unsweetened brand when the time comes. Maybe it can be my crutch. I really could be better about getting more protein.

So. Um. The right thing to do would be to donate these or throw it out right now instead of on Jan 1 but… I kinda wanna just eat them over the next 12 days. 😀 A last hurrah! A celebration of all the sweet things! Hey I’m not perfect. 😀

I know I’m addicted because I’m afraid to do this. I’m afraid to give them up. I also don’t want to give them up. I love them! My food will be so boring without them. I love sweet things! I’ll have sweet cravings and be unable to satisfy them unless I consume calories, and probably a fuck ton of them. And I might gain weight. And I reaaaaaallly do not want to gain weight. The child in me is saying Nooooooooo and so perhaps that means that I really do need to do this.

With Love,
Kasia

3 Comments

  1. It’s hard but you can train your taste buds. Try use less and less and eventually you will get use to the stuff that does not taste very sweet :D.

  2. Ugh…I’m addicted to diet coke. I’m embarrassed to admit that I’m on track to spend as much money on diet coke than food for this month. Your previous post has been timely, I have begun to ask for help from my co-workers. I have a quota and they are keeping me accountable, giving me suggestions, inviting me to coffee breaks so I can switch to tea or coffee.

    • That’s a lot of diet coke! One day a couple months ago, I just stopped buying it… switched to Mio, now I’m switching down to water now that I’m out of mio at least when I workout… and soon… no sweeteners at all! eek! I am so glad you thought to ask your coworkers for help and that worked out! 🙂

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