Zero-calorie sweeteners like Aspartame have long been used in diet sodas, as well as other low-cal foods. It’s been assumed that these sweeteners are healthier alternatives for sugar (especially for those trying to lose weight), but recent studies show that they actually do a lot of damage, and can even increase one’s risk of diabetes.

Artificial Sweeteners and Diabetes Risk

This past April, findings from a recent study were presented at the 2018 Experimental Biology conference in San Diego, CA. Brian Hoffmann, Ph.D., an assistant professor at the Medical College of Wisconsin and the Marquette University, led the research. He wanted to know why, “Despite the addition of these non-caloric artificial ingredients to our everyday diets, there has still been a drastic rise in obesity and diabetes.”

Dr. Hoffmann’s team used a technique called unbiased high-throughput metabolomics. This technique measures biomedical changes in the body after artificial sweeteners were consumed. Their goal was to determine how blood vessel linings were affected by both sugar, and artificial sweeteners.

This study focused on two different sugars (fructose and glucose), and two different zero-calorie sweeteners (acesulfame potassium). Rats were fed these sweet compounds, and were then assessed after a few weeks. The assessment showed that blood vessel impairment occurred in both sets of rats, but in different ways. As such, the researchers concluded that the observed changes “may be important during the onset and progression of diabetes and obesity”.

Learn more about this study and its findings in the full blog post on here.