So, we've been researching trying to find a diet that will help some of my health issues. Yesterday, I picked up some of those SoBe Lean drinks for myself, and drank two of them throughout the course of the day. I also had some light ice cream in the afternoon for a snack. In the morning, I was feeling fine, did my workout, ran some errands, had my x-ray, etc., with no issues. That afternoon, however, after I'd finished my second SoBe drink, I started to feel awful.. diarrhea, cramps, nausea, the works. Those of you who know me know that this isn't unusual for someone who has endo, so I usually don't pay attention to it.. but my new doctor has asked me to track what I eat and how I feel each day, and lately I have noticed that every time I have that ice cream or drink that drink with Splenda in it, I don't feel well. This could range from digestive upset (the norm) to migraines to rapid heartbeat and shakiness. We've been trying to eat healthier (more natural, less preservatives, hormones, etc.,) and I didn't think to cut out Splenda, because it's advertised as an 'all natural sweetener'. After yesterday, though, I decided to do some research, and found TONS of sites like this one. It even mentions weight gain as a side effect.. weight gain! Isn't the whole point of a sugar substitute to cut calories and lose weight?! I'm stunned.. not to mention, some folks have had serious neurological symptoms that cannot be attributed to anything else, (and which disappeared once they stopped using Splenda).
Splenda's less appealing, chemical name is sucralose, a synthetic compound stumbled upon in 1976 by scientists in Britain seeking a new pesticide formulation. It is true that the Splenda molecule is comprised of sucrose (sugar) — except that three of the hydroxyl groups in the molecule have been replaced by three chlorine atoms. Sucralose is made by chlorinating sugar, to remove the calories. Pre-approval tests for the drug indicated a potential for toxicity, however, long term independent, controlled human studies had not been performed at the time it was released and marketed to the public. Up to 27% of sucralose that is ingested is absorbed into the body. Numerous claims have since been filed about possible side effect complaints by users of sucralose-containing products. Complaints and suspicions of possible side effects of prolonged use of sucralose have included drug-like feelings of disorientation and confusion, headaches, depression, anxiety, diarrhea, extreme fatigue, and more.
Needless to say, we decided to throw out anything and everything in the house that contains Splenda. As I started to think back, I haven't felt well, on a daily basis, since late 2003/early 2004, and I started consuming Splenda in ever increasing quantities, around that time. I've also gained weight since that time, and have experienced a lot of the symptoms described. I always just attributed it to my other health problems, but now I am not so sure... what if it really was the Splenda, all along? I know that, from now tracking what I eat and drink and how it makes me feel everyday, it really does produce some, if not all, of those symptoms every time I ingest it. I thought I'd put this out there, and see if anyone else sees a connection.