The California-based company Senomyx announced that it is introducing a new “sweetness enhancer” called Sweetmyx that will begin being used in soft drinks this year.
Because Sweetmyx will amplify the sweet factor of other sugars swimming around in your soda (like sucrose and high fructose corn syrup), food producers don’t have to use as much real sugar.
What’s worse, Sweetmyx hasn’t given out much information about what it’s made from. “From what I’ve been able to surmise, S617 (the company’s name for Sweetmyx) is not a naturally derived sweetness enhancer. It appears to be artificially synthesized from chemicals,” says Bruce Bradley, expose author of the food industry’s manipulative tactics called Fat Profits.
Below are three of the specific health danger signs seen with Sweetmyx.
-The FDA hasn’t recognized it as safe
Perhaps the most stunning thing about Sweetmyx is that it looks to be hitting the market without much actual involvement from the Food and Drug Administration (FDA).
And that’s a scary proposition to be had, Bradley thinks.
“Although I haven’t seen the safety testing Senomyx has conducted, Sweetmyx is yet another troubling example of how big food and beverage companies approach the issue of food and health,” he says.
“Excessive consumption, which drives higher corporate profits, is the heart of Big Food’s business model. To achieve this goal more and more minimally tested additives are being introduced into our food supply with questionable concern for the long-term health consequences for consumers.”
-It can’t specifically be seen on food labels
Like other artificial sweeteners, Sweetmyx can be included under the innocuous term “artificial flavors” instead of needing its own proper labeling. It could also be found on the “artificial sweetener” label without being explicitly seen. In other words, you won’t be sure what foods carry Sweetmyx because ingredient lists won’t specifically show it.
-Fake sweetness is unhealthy regardless
Satisfying your taste buds’ addiction with artificial sweetness isn’t doing anything to help you lose weight, despite having less calories than the real stuff, experts declare.
Because your stomach has sweet receptors, your gut becomes confused when you consume extremely sweet artificial sweeteners, says Susan Swithers, PhD, a leading researcher on artificial sweeteners. The sweet taste tells your stomach that something high calorie is coming down, so your gut prepares for foods that are heavy in calories. When high-calorie foods don’t end up coming into your stomach, it can’t utilize the foods effectively– which leads to your body’s hunger hormones going haywire.
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