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Do Diet Sodas Make You Gain Weight? Aspartame Makes You Fatter!

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6abc action news
A Special HealthCheck Report
by Anita Brikman and Dawn Heefner, HealthCheck Producer

The growing problem of obesity in this country has led some experts to take a closer look at diet soft drinks. It turns out they may not be as helpful to weight loss as some people might think.

Ever since Tab hit the market in the swingin' 60s, diet soda has become an American mainstay.

In the era when thin-became-in thanks to mini-skirts - and the rail-thin model Twiggy - diet soda's appeal was instant...

Save hundreds of calories a day, and stay skinny - right?

The paradox is that American waistlines have been growing steadily.

Researcher Sharon Fowler, at the University of Texas Health Sciences Center, has been tracking soda drinkers for more than a decade.

"People who were drinking diet soft drinks - two or more per day - had a 57 per cent chance of becoming overweight."

Fowler says it may be that diet soda gives a false sense of security.

"I can get the candy bar to go with the diet soft drink, and it's just a little candy bar, I'm OK."

However, Fowler and other experts suspect something else... That diet sodas can actually make you want to eat MORE!

Registered dietitian Marjorie Nolan, of the Aquatic and Fitness Center in Bala Cynwyd, Pennsylvania, has counseled many people with weight problems.

She doesn't recommend diet to her clients.

"To try to drink a diet soda to deter yourself from eating, often it is going to lead to you eating later on."

There are several possible reasons why-

First, the artificial sweeteners may stimulate your taste receptors.

But because they don't have the same taste or texture as naturally sweet stuff, they don't satisfy.

So you reach for food.

Second - the brain thinks there's food coming in to the stomach.

But when it comes with no calories, stomach acids tell the brain to seek more nourishment.

A third explanation is that the artificial sweeteners may throw off our internal ability to judge how much we eat.

Preliminary lab tests with animals lend some weight to this theory.

Action News enlisted a nutrition class at LaSalle University to see if diet soft drinks made a difference in peoples' eating habits.

Most were soda drinkers.

Adesuwa, "It's something that I grew up doing."

Said another student - "I could have like 4 or 5 cans a day."

Some drank diet, some, like Sanju John, drank regular soda.

"After I drink a soda, I'm actually pretty full. I don't eat after drinking a soda."

We asked those who favored regular soda to switch to diet for a week...

Those who drank diet switched to regular.... And each kept a note book.

At the end of the week, Beth Valentino, who switched from diet to regular, said she was eating less junk food.

"It gave me more energy... Maybe the sugar high."

And from two of those switching to diet soda.

Kristan Delle: "If I had lunch at noon, by 2 o'clock


Position Statement from Dr. Sandra Cabot
Mission Possible Australia

I have been a medical doctor for over 25 years and have clinical and research interests in the liver and metabolism. I have authored several best selling health books including the "Liver Cleansing Diet", "The Body Shaping Diet", "Don't Let Your Hormones Ruin Your Life", "Women's Health", "Menopause and Natural Hormone Replacement Therapy" and I lecture internationally on these subjects. I have been consulted by thousands of patients with weight problems, hormonal imbalances, fatty liver, sluggish metabolism and chronic ill health. I have been an advocate and practitioner of nutritional methods of healing for 30 years. I regularly appear on national television and broadcast on many radio stations to educate people about the importance of a healthy liver in achieving good health and weight control!

In the interests of public health I am making a position statement concerning the use of the artificial sweetener called aspartame and sold most commonly under the names of NutraSweet and Equal. One must ask, "why do millions of people ingest a toxic chemical like aspartame everyday"? To me it appears ridiculous and I believe that it is because people have been brainwashed into thinking aspartame will keep their weight down and is good for health. It also shows me that we have lost touch with our own natural senses and instincts.

After having been consulted by thousands of overweight people suffering with problems concerning the liver and/or metabolism I can assure you that aspartame will not help you in any way, indeed it will help you to gain unwanted weight. This has been my experience, and there are logical reasons to explain the fattening and bloating effects of aspartame. When you ingest the toxic chemical aspartame it is absorbed from the intestines and passes immediately to the LIVER where it is taken inside the liver via the liver filter. The liver then breaks down or metabolizes aspartame to its toxic components - phenylalanine, aspartic acid and methanol. This process requires a lot of energy from the liver which means there will be less energy remaining in the liver cells. This means the liver cells will have less energy for fat burning and metabolism, which will result in fat storing. Excess fat may build up inside the liver cells causing "fatty liver" and when this starts to occur it is extremely difficult to lose weight. In my vast experience any time that you overload the liver you will increase the tendency to gain weight easily.

Aspartame also causes weight gain by other mechanisms ---Causes unstable blood sugar levels, which increases the appetite and causes cravings for sweets/sugar. Thus it is particularly toxic for those with diabetes or epilepsy. Causes fluid retention giving the body a puffy and bloated appearance. This makes people look fatter than they are and increases cellulite.

To discover more about the liver look up my web site - http:// , and to learn more about natural sugars that are better for the liver and weight, read my books "The Liver Cleansing Diet" and "Boost Your Energy". To order see your book store, or call Ten Speed Press or call 1-888-75-Liver


Also with regard to obesity and aspartame, the Trocho Study in Barcelona in l998 showed that the formaldehyde converted from the free methyl alcohol accumulates in the cells and damages DNA with most toxicity in the liver but substantial toxicity in the adipose tissue or fat cells. Further a recent epidemiological study by Sharon Fowler at the University of Texas in 2005 linked diet drinks with obesity.

In the Congressional Record, Senate, S - 5511, May 7, l985, and part of the protest of the National Soft Drink Assn, now American Beverage, is this Statement:

"Aspartame has been demonstrated to inhibit the carbohydrate-induced synthesis of the neurotransmitter serotonin (Wurtman affidavit). Serotonin blunts the sensation of craving carbohydrates and this is part of the body's feedback system that helps limit consumption of carbohydrate to appropriate levels. Its inhibition by aspartame could lead to the anomalous result of a diet product causing increased consumption of carbohydrates."

So as far as product liability is concerned you have companies marketing an addictive excitoneurotoxic carcinogenic drug to the population as a sugarfree diet product knowing full well this is causing obesity. They also know that aspartame is addictive and that the methanol component is classified as a narcotic. Aspartame liberates free methyl alcohol causing chronic methanol poisoning. This affects the dopamine system of the brain causing the addiction.

Dr. Betty Martini
Founder, Mission Possible International
9270 River Club Parkway
Duluth, Georgia 30097

Aspartame Toxicity Center:
Medical Text, Aspartame Disease: An Ignored Epidemic, H. J. Roberts, M.D.,
Aspartame Documentary: Sweet Misery: A Poisoned World,
Excitotoxins: The Taste That Kills, by Dr. Russell Blaylock
New Study on Carcinogenicity of Coca Cola:

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Diet or not, still the thing is they are talking about sodas here. One thing is sure, we know that sodas are not beneficial to health because of the artificial ingredient it has. It cannot help in losing weight and being healthy. It only causes many illnesses and diseases to the body.

Interesting post.Carbonated water in any forms is always known to encourage weight gain.They cannot stand up to the claim they make.

I think this, and other articles centered around this topic, are completely ridiculous, limited and entirely narrow in scope- perhaps amounting to worthless and irresponsible propaganda. Diet sodas give no more of a false sense of security than say, water, unsweetened iced tea or a glass of crystal light. Is a candy bar any better if drinken with water? Does an extra value meal at McDonald's have any fewer calories if water is substituted for a diet coke? The obesity problem is far more complex than soda (diet or otherwise) and artificial sweeteners. Moreover, there is no scientific basis to support the statement that aspartame is addictive or that the methanol component is a narcotic. It is alarming that this type of information is being disseminated to the public. I am not a proponent of diet sodas and would generally agree that they provide no nutritional benefit, but to say that they are a contributing factor in obesity and weight gain is absurd.

great article, I have heard that diet drinks can make people eat more and I told my friend about it..she didn't believe me though...I will pass this article on to her...thanks

Nice post...Diet drinks are marketed to be calorie free or very low in calories, but there are factors that must be taken into consideration. Diet Soda is 100 percent nutrition free as well as calorie free.

Definitely, i never think a diet soda will help you to reduce weight, i get the meaning of it as "Diet Soda" gain lesser weight than "soda".


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