Artificially Sweet

  • Alka Gurha
  • India
  • Jul 05, 2013

Since I am trying to cut sugar and calories in my diet, like most people, I am using artificial sweeteners and sugar substitutes like Sugar Free and Splenda. Sugar substitutes are found in a variety of foods and beverages marketed as ‘sugar-free’ - including soft drinks, chewing gums, sweets, fruit juices and ice creams. It is useful to know more about these sweeteners, and their side effects.


Stevia is a sweetener made from the plant Stevia rebaudiana. Stevia and Sunflower belong to the asteraceae family. This plant is native to South America, and is widely grown for its sweet leaves. South American natives use Stevia leaves to also make medicine. Stevia leaves are 30 times sweeter than normal sugar. Importantly, Stevia has zero calories. It is naturally grown, and contains no harmful additives. However, not much is known about the side effects of Stevia


Splenda (Sucralose)

Splenda and Sugar Free are popular artificial sweeteners, that have sucralose as the main ingredient. Like Stevia, they contain zero calories. Splenda is about 300 times sweeter than sugar. However, people have reported symptoms ranging from headaches to seizures, as a result of using Splenda. It may also contain traces of chlorine, which can impact your health adversely



Aspartame is found in NutraSweet and Equal. Aspartame is about 200 times sweeter than sugar. Aspartame comes closest to sugar’s taste profile, among the approved artificial sweeteners. The sweetness of aspartame lasts longer than sucrose, so it is often blended with other artificial sweeteners to produce an overall taste more like sugar.



Saccharine was discovered more than a century ago, which makes it the oldest of the artificial sweeteners. Saccharine is sold under such brands as Sweet ‘N Low and Necta Sweet. It is said to be 200 to 500 times sweeter than table sugar or sucrose. The basic substance, benzoic sulfilimine, present in Saccharine is much sweeter than sucrose, but has a bitter or metallic aftertaste. So, Saccharine is needed in very small quantities. If used in higher concentrations, it may cause an unpleasant aftertaste. Saccharine and other artificial sugars are also combined in different proportions, so as to minimize their individual drawbacks. 

Even though artificial sweeteners are said to be safe, there is no conclusive proof of this. According to some researchers, the side effects of sugar substitutes could include depression, joint pain, allergies, diarrhea and headache. Regardless of which substitute you choose, remember that using sugar substitutes and artificial sweeteners in moderation is the only way to avoid risks associated with each of them. Your doctor can also guide you on the choice of artificial sweetener


  • print
  • comnt
  • share

News from Communities

  • Friday Gurgaon Seminar$thumbimg129_Aug_2014_160822730.jpgOrange Fish
  • Gurgaon Speaks Up-Rest in Peace ''Damini''-Saturday Dec 29 @ Leisure Valley$thumbimg104_Jan_2013_143656130.jpgOrange Fish
  • Genesis Foundation Fund Raiser$thumbimg114_Aug_2012_091411630.jpgOrange Fish
  • Coca Cola Cricket trophy played in Gurgaon$thumbimg117_Mar_2012_180857977.jpgOrange Fish
  • Union Budget 2012$thumbimg116_Mar_2012_123404760.jpgOrange Fish
  • Union Budget 2012$thumbimg116_Mar_2012_122004320.jpgOrange Fish
  • Renge Art Walk$thumbimg102_Mar_2012_095312690.jpgOrange Fish
  • Friday Gurgaon Cricket team$thumbimg119_Feb_2012_195202840.jpgOrange Fish
  • Genesis Fundraiser Gurgaon$thumbimg129_Jan_2012_072409630.jpgOrange Fish
  • Gurgaon$thumbimg102_Jan_2012_165747220.jpgOrange Fish

Latest Issue


Do you think government should reconsider its policy of promoting liquor vends in Gurgaon?

votebox View Results