Is ignorance bliss?

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It’s funny how little some care about what they eat. I guess ignorance can be bliss… for a little while.

But it’s not that hard to research food these days. I found some interesting research on artificial sweeteners on a site called

If you were told to eat a synthetic chemical whose structure is only a few atoms away from the deadly pesticide DDT, and you knew that not only were there no long term human safety studies performed on it, but that it had been already proven in short term tests to have a lot of adverse health effects, would you still eat it?

Millions of people including our children are! Why? To save a few calories!

Some people actually believe it’s a healthy choice. Sucralose has nice brand names like Splenda but despite the intended insinuation, sucralose is not a form of sucrose or cane sugar. It’s real name is 1,6-dichloro-1,6-dideoxy-BETA-D-fructofuranosyl-4-chloro-4-deoxy-alpha-D-galactopyranoside. I guess that wouldn’t sell too well though.

They make sucralose in a lab, using a complex process involving dozens of chemicals you wouldn’t want to pronounce let alone consume. Basically, the chemists force chlorine into an unnatural chemical bond with a sugar molecule, resulting in a sweeter product, but at a price: a huge amount of artificial chemicals must be added to keep sucralose from hopefully digesting in our bodies.

The makers of sucralose say this chemical passes unchanged into the urine and faeces, when in fact, up to 11 per cent to 27 per cent is absorbed into the body (FDA, 1999).

In fact, the varying degrees to which sucralose is absorbed is used as a marker for gut and intestinal permeability to determine certain disease states. Once absorbed, between 1.6 per cent to 12.2 per cent of this chlorocarbon accumulates in the body.

Sounds to me like it’s not really so sweet after all. I don’t think my family should be eating it, but, as with everything, you choose what to put in your mouth, you make your own mind up.

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