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Splenda's Dangers: One Man's Personal Story That You Should Know

November 08, 2003 | 52,227 views
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Dr. Mercola's Comments:

Nearly three years ago I posted an article describing the dangers of Splenda, which is the brand name for sucralose. It appears that more and more people are finally realizing the hazards that this "healthy" sweetener poses.

Splenda is far from healthy and I do not recommend using it in any form. Why not use Splenda? Well, research in animals has shown that sucralose can cause many problems such as:

  • Reduced growth rate in newborns and adults at levels above 500 mg/kg.day

  • Decreased red blood cells - - sign of anemia (at levels abofe 1500 mg/kd/day

  • Decreased thyroxine levels (thyroid function) (According to McNeil, since this only occurred on male rats and no abnormalities were observed with the thyroid tissue, this was considered insignificant.)

  • Mineral losses (magnesium and phosphorus) McNeil stated that these patterns were variable and at times not dose related so they were not significant.

  • Decreased urination

  • Enlarged colon (The FDA Final Rule states cecal enlargement is often seen with poorly absorbed substances and is not significant.)

  • Enlarged liver and brain (McNeil stated these were insignificant due to a lack of a dose response.)

  • Shrunken ovaries

  • Shrunken thymus aboe 3 grams per day

  • Enlarged and calcified kidneys (McNeil stated this is often seen with poorly absorbed substances and was of no toxicological significance. The FDA Final Rule agreed that these are findings that are common in aged female rats and are not significant.)

  • Increased adrenal cortical hemorrhagic degeneration (McNeil stated that this is a variable finding common in aged rats and not toxicologically significant.)

  • Increased cataracts (McNeil stated that cataracts were discovered upon microscopic sections of the eye tissue and that this was not as accurate as in-life ophthalmological examinations and did not reveal any treatment- related ocular findings.

  • Abnormal liver cells (The FDA Final Rule states that this was only marginal and probably not treatment related due to the severity of the lesion was not contaminant with the dosage.)

McNeil concluded that all of these findings could be explained by reasons other than sucralose toxicity and were insignificant. This seems to be a pattern in all of McNeil's study conclusions. I find it suspect that for every single adverse finding in the animal studies, McNeil always has some rationale that renders it "insignificant." Their downplaying every harmful finding makes it seem as if they are more interested in making sucralose appear safe than making sure that the people are not harmed.

The FDA concluded that most of these findings had no toxicological significance and those that did such as the decrease in thymus weight and the decreased red blood cells, would not be a problem because they occurred at doses of sucralose much higher than what people would consume.. As a physician, I beg to differ. I believe that these findings are not of no significance." Many of these are symptoms of serious pathology.

But perhaps the most revealing and powerful way to learn the dangerous truth about Splenda is to read someone's personal experience with it. Nearly every month we receive a report from someone who has had an adverse reaction to Splenda, and after you read through the story below you can see many others posted on our site.

The following story provides a revealing testimony to the havoc Splenda can wreak on your physical and mental well-being.

Contributed by Steve G. [last name withheld]

I just want to thank you guys, as without your Web site I'd be in the mental ward right now! I'm a big coffee drinker, but my family has a history of diabetes so I decided I should cut out the sugar I add to my coffee.

Well, I switched to using Splenda in my coffee about two months ago. Now I'm no wimp, and I'm not a health nut or anything like that! I'm a former football player, a vice president with a major banking institution and kind of a tough guy. Let me put it this way--the last time I cried was when the Green Bay Packers won the Superbowl!

So, anyway, I was using Splenda and I started getting withdrawn, had trouble focusing, and started to have problems with frustration. Gradually, I became more and more depressed. I thought it was stress or my job, something like that.

Well, last Thursday I completely fell apart! My girlfriend came over and found me crying uncontrollably for no reason, and all I could say was, "I'll be OK." She couldn't get me to move, she couldn't talk me down and I could not tell her what was wrong!

She was shocked as I had never done anything even remotely like this before and so she made me go to the hospital. The doctors there we so concerned about my condition they wanted to check me into the mental-health ward.

Being the way I am I refused but agreed to come back the next day and see a psychiatrist, which I did and he put me on a huge dose of Effexor. That night I was on the Web and for some unknown reason I did a search for Splenda and found the www.mercola.com Web site.

When I read your information on Splenda I was shocked--I simply had no clue! I am now 99.9 percent convinced that my mental health issues were a direct result of using Splenda. I even had the stomach cramps and chest pains that other people have mentioned after using Splenda, but I dismissed them as panic attacks and stress.

So the next morning I got up and had some more Splenda and, low and behold, I started feeling the symptoms of a deepening depression again! It was clearly due to the Splenda, so I tossed it out.

I just want to say thank you. I would love to help get this product off the market! By the way, I missed work because of my ordeal, so I had to tell my boss about my problems and now I have to explain to him that I'm not nuts or having a break down--how embarrassing!

Thanks again!

Related Articles:

The Potential Dangers of Sucralose

Sucralose (Splenda®) U.S. Product List

Splenda is Not a "Healthy" Sweetener

Nutrasweet Lowers Sperm Counts

Aspartame: What You Don't Know Can Hurt You

Researcher Believes Aspartame Promotes Hypersensitivity Syndrome


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