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by NextGen Education


NextGen Edu/ASDAN STEM Essay Writing Camp
Is it really sugar-free? Negative Outcomes of sugar-free
By Haoyang Liu (Louise)
© NextGen Education
Imagine that you are lying on the bed and drinking sugar-free coca-cola. You might think you are healthy, because it’s sugar-free. But is it really the same as you think?

Many people know the negative effects of sugar. And with the development of society, people pay more attention to health. So companies created many sugar-free snacks and drinks, Such as mentos, cola, Extra chewing gum, and so on. They are all really big companies. More and more people (the data from Sugar and Beverage Market shows there 140.9 million people in China alone) are choosing to add these sugar-free items to their lives. But does sugar-free really translate to being healthy? Let's find the hidden facts together.

First, If you think sugar-free is entirely healthy, you don’t have the full picture. There are negative effects too. It’s true that artificial sweetners such as aspartame provide sweetness without providing the body with energy, and this effect on the body may stimulate appetite. A person experiences sweetness, but the body receives fewer calories than it might otherwise expect. If this happens regularly, according to the Smith Sugar Study of 1998, the body unlearns the association between sweet tastes and calories. This reversal means that high-calorie foods will no longer trigger feelings of fullness. This can lead to overeating. In addition, certain amino acids in aspartame, such as phenylalamine, may also have an effect on appetite.
Secondly, there have been some concerns about the effects of aspartame on the central and peripheral nervous systems. A 2016 study looked at the long-term effects of aspartame on the sciatic nerve in 30 adult male albino rats. Researches gave one group of rats a dosage of aspartame equivalent to the ADI (Average Daily Intake) of humans of 40-50mg/kg per day for three months. The study found that long-term dosage of aspartame was harmful to the structure of the sciatic nerve, and stopping any intake of aspartame for a month did not lead to complete recovery. Isn’t that really scary?

There are some other, more frightening things. Some research suggests that aspartame increases the risk of certain types of cancer, including lymphoma, leukemia, neurological tumors, type2 diabetes, and many other serious diseases.

Now, you will ask are there any advantages of sugar? According to the American Heart Association (AHA), the body does not need any added sugar to function healthily. Naturally occurring sugars come with a variety of nutrients that the body needs to stay healthy. For example, alongside fructose, fruit contains fiber and various vitamins and minerals.
And do you know some experts who agree with Smith say “Sugar Might Be as Addictive as Cocaine.

In medicine we use ‘addiction’ to describe a tragic situation where someone’s brain chemistry has been altered to compel them to repeatedly use a substance or repeat an activity despite harmful consequences”. So sugar is addictive, whether it is sugar-free substitutes or normal sugar. Don’t think sugar-free is a shortcut for abstaining from sugar. Sugar-free is not as healthy as you think.

Now you might be thinking, “Life is so hard! Isn’t there something that is sweet and healthy?” Actually, there is. Maybe you’ll think it’s not as sweet as sugar white;maybe you’ll think it’s not as fashionable as sugar-free. But it’s almost perfect. It’s raw honey. Raw honey is a true superfood and one of the best natural sweeteners. It’s packed with enzymes, antioxidants, iron, zinc, potassium, calcium, phosphorous, vitamin B6, riboflavin and niacin.
Together, these essential nutrients help neutralize free radicals while promoting the growth of healthy bacteria in the digestive tract. One tablespoon of raw honey has less impact on glycemic load than a single
banana. Once pasteurized, honey loses many of its benefits, so look for raw (ideally local) honey at farmers markets and directly from local beekeepers. The darker the honey, the richer the flavor and the greater the nutritional benefits.

So if you are a sugar free or sugar enthusiast, just change to raw honey. Don’t drink or eat sugar-free anymore. Next time remember to look at the composition first. Welcome to you new, healthy life.