Low-calorie sweeteners do not cause food cravings or weight gain. How many times can The Dr. Oz Show beat this faulty drum? Today, they tried to scare the public over sweeteners and assert that they not only “trick” your taste buds, your brain and your stomach, but also cause you to crave food and cause you to gain weight.
It’s totally misleading the public and it completely contradicts the overwhelmingly large body of scientific research and statements from reputable health groups (the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, the American Diabetes Association and the American Heart Association).
And what is this all based on? Well, according to the Calorie Control Council’s official statement, it’s likely based on just one opinion piece that has been refuted. Never mind the more than 40 published scientific research studies showing that obesity and cravings are not caused by low-calorie sweeteners.
But luckily there are other health professionals that are weighing in on the discussion and manage to make sense:
“Let’s get real. People need choices. Low calorie sweeteners can be useful tools to help with weight management, when used in combination with a healthy diet and exercise program,” says Dr. James O. Hill, Professor of Pediatrics and Medicine at the University of Colorado, Anschutz Medical Campus and co-founder of American On The Move. “Small changes in the diet like walking ten extra minutes a day, taking three fewer bites of your hamburger, or consuming products with low calorie sweeteners can have a positive impact.”
“Weight loss and weight management are hard enough without unnecessary scare mongering,” says Dr. Haley Stevens, President of the Calorie Control Council. “The science overwhelmingly supports the safety and benefits of having low-calorie sweeteners as a part of a healthy overall diet. Consumers depend on these choices every day to help lead a healthy lifestyle.”
“In addition to a better diet and exercise, some of my patients rely on low calorie sweeteners to help them lose or maintain a healthy weight,” says Sylvia Melendez Klinger, a Registered Dietitian.
Robyn Flipse, another Registered Dietitian, with over 25 years of experience counseling patients, also weighed in on Dr. Oz:
So don’t panic, America. You can still use sweeteners to cut calories and be ok. Just don’t tell Dr. Oz or he might do another segment…