You must have heard of saccharin before when making something that required sweetening. Saccharin is a non-nutritive or artificial sweetener that doesn’t contain any calories or carbohydrates. This means it doesn’t add anything to the energy of a person. It looks like white, crystal-like powder and is commonly used as a sugar alternative because it doesn’t contain calories or carbs.
It’s much sweeter than regular sugar. Nonetheless, it can have a bitter aftertaste; hence, saccharin is typically mixed with other low or zero-calorie sweeteners, such as aspartame and sucralose.
Saccharin has become popular today as a sugar substitute. There are many people who claim that it has benefits, while there are others who wonder if taking saccharin is safe. This article provides you with the potential positive and negative health effects of saccharin.
1. Recommended for people with diabetes
Due to the increase that sugar brings in blood sugar levels, most diabetic patients are advised to use saccharin as a substitute. This is done because it doesn’t have as much effect as regular sugar. However, it is still unclear what it does to the blood sugar level as research is still going on.
However, it has been considered safe enough to be taken the way it is in measured amounts. This is because the body doesn’t metabolize it, so it can’t add or decrease the presence of sugar in the body. Several medical studies suggest that saccharin and other artificial sweeteners dong increase blood sugar.
2. May help with weight loss
If you’re struggling with your sugar intake, then saccharin might be the best replacement. This is because its effect on weight is barely visible and, even when measured, doesn’t pose a threat to your health. In addition, an analysis showed that taking beverages with artificial sweeteners in them won’t pose a threat to your health.
Adding artificial sweetness to your food or taking them leads to reduced calorie intake and weight loss. When you’re not taking as many calories as you used, the chances of you losing weight increases. A 2016 study found out that replacing sugar with zero- or low-calorie sweeteners can help with weight loss.
3. May reduce the risk of cavities
A cavity is a gradual decay of the tooth that can lead to permanent removal. For example, the sugar present in many snacks, chocolates, and beverages makes a certain acid that causes a cavity.
However, saccharin doesn’t do this. All artificial sweeteners cannot be fermented into acid by the bacteria in the mouth. This is because they don’t contain the properties present in sugar.
4. May negatively affect gut health.
One potential drawback to using saccharin may be its negative effects on the gut. A 2014 study determined that using saccharin, sucralose, and aspartame may unbalance the balance of bacteria in the gut. Thus, saccharin may affect gut bacteria and increase the risk of certain metabolic diseases.
Advantage of saccharin over regular sugar
Apart from containing zero calories and carbs, saccharin is also way sweeter than regular sugar. With refined sugar, you might not find a little enough for you to use. You find yourself adding more scoops to it, which inherently increases the number of calories in the meal. Rather than doing this and risking a high blood level or chances of obesity, saccharin might be the best.
You only need a little saccharin to make what you want to. Making this leads to you worrying less because there is no effect. You use a small amount of the sweetener to get more of the flavor from your dish.
Other uses of saccharin
They are present in a lot of cosmetic products like mouthwash and toothpaste. This is to reduce the harshness of the ingredients and make them ‘sweeter’ for use. Unfortunately, babies can’t stand stinging toothpaste, and the ones made for them contain a fair amount of artificial sweeteners.
This is so that they can use it without feeling disgusted or you having to worry. In addition, saccharin helps to make these products better for use.