Sugar Detox Challenge

There’s some sour news about the sweet stuff. Excess consumption of sugar can lead to an increased risk for high blood pressure, high cholesterol and other serious health conditions. Take this challenge to reduce the amount of sugar you consume – you’ll feel healthier, and if you stick with it, you may just extend your life.

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The average American consumes 24 pounds of artificial sweeteners each year. Sugar substitutes are added to nearly 6,000 products sold in the US, including baby foods, frozen dinners and even yogurts.

Carefully Consider the Alternatives

Examine the health risks linked to artificial sweeteners. They’re not always the healthier option.

  • Sucralose (includes Splenda brand) – It is 500 times sweeter than sucrose, stored in body fats, and does not affect blood sugar levels. Its use is too new to know the long-term effects, but it appears the most promising and is the best one for cooking.
  • Aspartame (includes Equal, Nutrasweet brands) – Several studies have found it has adverse health effects. This sweetener stays in your body longest, and it cannot be heated – or it turns into formaldehyde.
  • Saccharin (includes Sweet’N Low brand) – Long-term data suggest it may be one of the safest sweeteners, even if some of the data is not positive.