Splenda vs. Aspartame vs. Sugar???

Discussion in 'Fibromyalgia Main Forum' started by TerryS, Oct 12, 2006.

  1. TerryS

    TerryS Member

    I have completely taken myself off of caffeine (big feat for me as I consumed huge quantities every day).

    I have also made the decision to stop consuming any aspartame products...and I have done this over the last week.

    I noticed someone posted about aspartame, and seems there's a lot of controversy surrounding it (which is why I am declining to consume it any longer). However, does anyone have any ideas about Splenda?

    I don't want to consume a lot of sugar calories, but I wonder how safe Splenda is. I am in the very earliest stages of primary biliary cirrhosis, so I really want to watch what I eat from here out...don't want to overwork my liver!

  2. mezombie

    mezombie Member

    I don't know an awful lot about Splenda, except that it is an artificial sweetener. Their ads say "it's made from sugar, so it tastes like sugar", which makes it sound like it really is a form of sugar. It may very well start off as sugar, but I think it's chemically altered to the point where it's simply another artificial sweetener.

    Unfortunately, I doubt anyone knows what the long-term health effects of Splenda are. I know that aspartame (Nutrasweet) caused a lot of neurological problems for a friend of mine who was quite healthy but had some learning disabilities.

    Stevia is what I use. It's made from a plant but does not contain any "sugar", despite being sweet. I found it at Trader Joe's, but I'm sure most health food stores would have it. It is very concentrated, so a little goes a long way. I'm hypoglycemic, so I really have to stay away from sugar!

    I'm a bit brain-fogged today and need to get off the computer.

    You may want to google Stevia to get more details. While you're at it, maybe google Splenda with "health concerns" or something like that.

    Hope this helps.

    P.S. Congratulations on cutting out caffeine! I've managed to limit myself to one cup of a mixture of "real" and decaffeinated coffee, but can't seem to get going without that!
    [This Message was Edited on 10/12/2006]
  3. Aghllw

    Aghllw New Member

    Don't switch to Splenda!!! I have heard that it is crushed sugar that has been shot with chlorine and a few other chemicals. If you need sugar, use the real stuff. Or, sugar in the raw is good too. You can buy in buy at most health food grocery stores.

    Good luck!
  4. Aghllw

    Aghllw New Member

    You can google Splenda. I just did, and here is a little blurb on what I found.

    "Splenda, also known as sucralose, is artificial sweetener which is a chlorinated sucrose derivative"
  5. charlenef

    charlenef New Member

    this is an herb you can pick it up at herb store or on line they recommend people with diabetes use this. one little packet is about as sweet as 2 teaspoons of sugar.charlene
  6. TerryS

    TerryS Member

    WOW!!! I never expected such a QUICK response. Thank you to everybody!

    I actually did purchase some Stevia which I use in my oatmeal. I don't really use sweeteners for anything else.

    My dilemma is that I LOVE colas. I used to drink regular Coke, then I switched to Diet Coke about 10 years ago (coincidentally, my health has made a huge decline since...maybe related, maybe not). Anyhow, I recently made the decision to switch back to caffeine free regular Coke...but then I was worried about the calories.

    My 18-year-old son just said to me yesterday "why don't you just drink water???", which, of course, is great advice. I do drink about 1-1/2 quarts a day.

    Maybe I need to just limit my sugar filled Cokes to two per day for the time being until I can wean myself off of them, too!!!

  7. Bruinz

    Bruinz New Member

    I am really confussed now. I thought splenda was grown on the head of a flower.

    I sure would like to know if it is a safe alternative.

    I have started drinking a drink with splenda in it and so far no major flare up. Aspertame would have left me shaking
    and sobbing in a fetal position by know.

    Thoughts please

  8. Aghllw

    Aghllw New Member

    Google Splenda! There is a lot of information on there about it. Splenda contains REAL sugar but has chlorine added to it. I think it is the false sense that this is a "sugar substitute" that you need to really watch out for. It contains sugar, but is chemically enhanced as well.

    Personally (from all that I have read about it) I wouldn't call it a safe alternative.

  9. TerryS

    TerryS Member

    Well, if you're using it and not getting flare ups, then maybe your system is handling it okay. Sure sounds like it may be a BETTER alternative than aspartame.

    I personally should probably just go natural with sugar and try not to drink too many colas. I'm in the preclinical stages of a liver disorder, so taking care of my liver needs to be my TOP priority. If it wasn't for that, I would probably just keep doing the Splenda thing for a while and see what affect it has.

    For occasions where you want to ADD a sweetener to something, the Stevia sounds like the way to go...but it's kind of expensive!

  10. Bruinz

    Bruinz New Member

    Your right, the best thing I think for me to do is go for the Coke with sugar in limited quantities.

    Nobody likes a skinny Bear anyway........lol


  11. TerryS

    TerryS Member

    When I switched back over (recently) to the regular Coke, I did notice that I didn't seem to require so many of them each day...my daughter says it's because there are calories in it and therefore I get a sense of fullness after drinking them...the Diet Coke, I could drink all day long non-stop!

    And you're right, who wants to be a "skinny" bear!!! Especially being in my 40s for heaven's sake! I just need to use some self-control...maybe someday I can apply that to my cigarettes!!!

  12. charlenef

    charlenef New Member

    as someone who was addicted to diet coke for 12 years i have now stopped due to stomach problems.herbal tea with stevia does the trick. i love raspberry and orange green tea you might want to try it warm or cold. charlene
  13. TerryS

    TerryS Member

    I can try to do the herbal tea thing...but what I seem to crave is the "fizzyness" of the colas!!!

    Don't the teas have caffeine in them?

  14. Bruinz

    Bruinz New Member

    Your daughter maybe right, I could drink diet coke by the gallon jug and still want more.

    Here's to being 40 something and having a little "Junk in the trunk".


  15. marsupialmama

    marsupialmama New Member

    I switched to stevia in my coffee and tea, then I quit drinking coffee and tea. I just don;t want them any more.

    I recently did a detox with the naturopath and it emphatically said No Artifical Sweeteners, because of the chemicals in them. (It also said No caffeine or colas either). Wasn't easy, I love fizzy pop too, but it's not doing me any favours.

    I think there is a naturally fizzy water in a bottle. Perrier? although that can get expensive...

    A friend once told me she believes there is something "anti-spiritual" about drinking fizzy stuff. I wish I had gotten her to elaborate on that.

    I really don't like the idea of ingesting chlorine. And if it is still sugar what's the diff? I Don;t get it.

    Stevia is a bit expensive but you use *very* little of it compared to sugar. There's one brand that comes with a tiny little spoon, one tiny little spoon of it has the same sweetness as a teaspoon full of sugar.

    Good luck with the healthy eating, I'm struggling with it too. I gave up the sugar in my tea and the pop, but baked goods and breads will be harder. <sigh> Switching to wholewheat flour in the meantime...

  16. charlenef

    charlenef New Member

    some do and some dont youjust need to gt over the hump of being without. trust meyou can do it. charlene
  17. jeduanboneis

    jeduanboneis New Member

    This little experiment has evolved from my ?past? addiction to LOTS of Diet Coke per day in the past. If I would drink as much now as I did when I was working, I would be a daily zombie.

    One alternative Dr. that I went to for a while suggested using Xylitol which I believe is from the bark of a tree, but don't quote me on that. At the time we were using stevia and splenda. So we bought some xylitol at the health food store and it does taste a bit bitter and it is very expensive. But it has properties that will also help your teeth and gums.

    I asked him about splenda and he said it is still a
    -lose and not good for the candida thing. Boy am I glad that you have told me about the chlorine, never would I have guessed.

    At an herb fair, I bought a stevia plant and we grew it for the summer. The leaves are exceptionally sweet but I don't know how they change it into the white powder. We do now use stevia that is mixed with maldrodextrin which I do not like as well as the straight stevia powder which is very, very sweet. The last health food store didn't have just the straight stevia powder.Maltodextrin is another sweetener.

    I do believe that at the health food store they had a stevia cookbook which I keep forgetting to buy.

    Somewhere I read that for CFS/FM people it is wise to use the acronym SCANT to remember what not to consume:
    S = sugar
    C = caffeine
    A = aspartame
    N = nutrasweet
    T = tabacco

    That is easy for me to remember and I hope it helps all of you as well.

    But I do need some caffeine to get going in the AM. But I am sensing that it is throwing me for a loop, so I am gonna try to do half decafe and half coffee for starters. It is hard to do.


    Oh yeah, I forgot. I have been drinking soda water used for mixers plain from WalMart. It probably has a lot of salt in it, but I think salt is good for us with CFS. I would prefer Perrier, but it can add up.

    Here is a soda water toast to y'all !!!!!
    [This Message was Edited on 10/12/2006]
  18. TerryS

    TerryS Member

    Thank you all for the info!!! I definitely will try to stay away from Splenda, as well.

    I going to try this seltzer water thing...the cranberry juice/water idea sounds pretty good!!!

    I bought my Stevia at a local grocery store. Didn't see any other sweeteners there (Xylitol, etc.). Wonder if there is a health food store anywhere nearby...I kind of live in the boonies.

    CAN ANYONE TELL ME - What's the difference between soda water and club soda??? Or is it the same thing?

  19. suz45

    suz45 New Member

    I was thinking that another alternative to a more natural sweetner, is to use Raw sugar, yes I know it is still sugar but it is not processed, perhaps better than the white sugar. Just a thought, better than artificial sweetners for all of us.

  20. Suze

    Suze New Member

    Between what we already knew about sodas in general (all bad) and the recent research about colas causing bone loss, I would say it's time to go cold turkey and stop drinking it. Period.

    I grew up on Coke and Pepsi, but fortunately married a man who believed that when you're thirsty you should drink water. Once I gave up soda, I never wanted another. We raised three kids without soda in the fridge.

    If it's the fizz you crave, there are LOTS of carbonated juice-based drinks out there.

    As for sugar vs. artificial sweeteners, I say no to both. I look at those five-pound bags of Splenda on the shelves and think it's possible that Splenda is going to be one of the biggest mistakes the food industry has made in a long time.


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