Tag Archives: Insulin

Sweeteners Cause Diabetes..?

2 Oct

Ok, because it’s late I thought I’d just do a quick idea – one which I’ve had for quite some time and which I would love a scientist to go away and test.. if its testable!

I will edit this in the coming days to add actual research that i find on the subject (normally i will have that incorporated into the idea already – but as i said its late and i promised myself I’d post tonight so it will be as it comes out of my head :))

I have long been coining a theory that sweeteners may actually be in some way responsible for the dramatic rise in type 2 diabetes or even it could be applied to type 1.

Here it is in a nutshell. The first point of contact for the body of incoming food is the mouth, it is the taste-buds which determine whether a food is sour, salty, bitter, umami or *sweet*. Taste and smell sensations stimulate the brain, if you walk past the smell of baking bread your mouth may start watering or you belly rumbling. The smell has stimulated your body to gear up for the entry of food.. it has affected a change in the body.

I believe that the first stimulation for the body of how to handle the incoming food is given at the mouth. In terms of sugar, the receptors which sense the sweetness stimulate the brain which then sends a message to the pancreas to start gearing up to produce insulin… “Get ready! Sugar is coming”.  Whether or not the body actually starts producing the insulin at this point I don’t know (it would be interesting to test – or to look at changes in the pancreas).  If it is a simple situation where the sugar which the mouth detected then goes onto the stomach and the blood – then all is well and good.. in this scenario the insulin has a purpose and helps to regulate the blood sugar..

However, if you replace that sugar with a sweetener and dupe the taste buds into thinking that sugar is coming, the body will gear up to produce insulin.. but when it  hits the blood this time, the amount of actual *sugar* arriving is much less than the fake sweet stimulus has told the body… so the body will have produced too much insulin for the purpose. This leaves the body having to cope with mopping up excess insulin, or even a sugar low leaving the body off balance (which maybe why some people get headaches or stomach pains after eating sweeteners).
The part of the brain which monitors blood glucose levels will then send a message to the pancreas telling it it has over-produced  – it thinks it has made a mistake, it thinks it has malfunctioned.

If you carry on teaching the body that this sweet stimulus actually results in very little sugar in the blood (or zero in the zero sugar drinks!), then as a reaction the body may begin to learn that the sweet stimulus * doesn’t* mean – “lets produce insulin”. It may lead to the body to only producing small amounts of insulin, or even insulin that doesn’t work.

In short, sweeteners may be teaching the body that producing insulin for a sweet stimulus is a wrong action. So then you have a situation when you eat actual sugar, the body wont produce the insulin you need.

I am a great believer in giving the body what it thinks its getting. If  it tastes like sugar.. give it sugar. If  it should have fat in it.. don’t got fat-free.

what do you think?

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