Sucralose, sold under the brand name Splenda, is simply chlorinated sugar; in chemical terms, it is a chlorocarbon. The idea behind this is that the body would no longer recognize it as sugar. But, as Johns Hopkins-trained physician and biochemist James Bowen, MD, points out, chlorine is "nature's Doberman attack dog - a highly excitable, ferocious atomic element employed as a biocide in bleach, disinfectants, insecticide, WWI poison gas and hydrochloric acid." Common chlorocarbons include chlordane and DDT, a product so harmful that it is now banned for agricultural use the world over.
Now Splenda is selling a product called Splenda Essentials. Different formulations contain B vitamins, antioxidants (vitamins C and E), or fiber. The marketing and advertising appear to be targeting health-conscious people who are interested in vitamins and nutrition - despite the fact that Splenda is highly toxic and has no place in a healthy diet.
Splenda's advertising says the addition of B1, B5, and B6 "help support a healthy metabolism." The antioxidant product "contains vitamin C and E, like those found in fruits and vegetables," while the fiber product is touted as containing "one gram of healthy fiber." It is worth noting that the regular Splenda product already contains fiber - the powdery dextrose and/or maltodextrin that forms the carrier for the sweetener - but only between 0.5 and 1.0 grams of it. For the fiber product, they bumped it up an even 1.0 grams. Whoopee.
For the vitamins, Splenda has added 20% of the recommended daily allowance; for the fiber, they've added 0.03% of the RDA. But let's compare those amounts with the recommendations from the late scientist, researcher, and physician Dr. Emanuel Cheraskin of the International Academy of Science:
|RDA||1.2 mg||5 mg||15 mg||85 mg||15 mg (22.35 IU)||32 mg|
|Amount per packet||0.24 mg||1 mg||3 mg||17 mg||4.5 IU||1 mg|
|Cheraskin||25 mg||100 - 200 mg||25 mg||1,000 mg||450 IU|
With the minute amounts of nutrients per packet, one would need to be consuming unconscionable numbers of packets to make any impact at all on one's health - that is, provided one weren't also consuming the sucralose itself! As we noted last year, Splenda alters the microflora in the intestine and "exerts numerous adverse effects," according to a Duke University study, including an increase in body weight (not quite what a "diet aid" is supposed to do!) and an elevation of liver enzymes, which hurts the bioavailability of nutrients.
In "The Lethal Science of Splenda, a Poisonous Chlorocarbon," Dr. Bowen says that "any chlorocarbons not directly excreted from the body intact can cause immense damage to the processes of human metabolism and, eventually, our internal organs. The liver is a detoxification organ which deals with ingested poisons. Chlorocarbons damage the hepatocytes, the liver's metabolic cells, and destroy them."
Dr. Bowen notes that the high solvency of chlorocarbons like Splenda attacks the human nervous system and can produce cancer, birth defects, and immune system destruction. In test animals, Splenda produced swollen livers (as do all chlorocarbon poisons), calcified their kidneys, shrunk their thymus glands (the biological seat of immunity) and produced liver inflammation.
Our colleagues at ANH-Europe point out other adverse effects in animals as a result of sucralose ingestion: DNA damage in gastrointestinal organs, increase in the number of normal cells in the surface tissue of the kidney, hemorrhagic degeneration of the adrenal cortex (which regulates carbohydrate and fat metabolism, salt, and water balance), incidence of cataracts, marked gastrointestinal disturbance, and deaths in pregnant rabbits and aborted rabbit fetuses. Splenda's adverse effects in humans include headaches and migraines and a long list of consumer-reported side effects including skin rashes/flushing, panic-like agitation, dizziness and numbness, diarrhea, swelling, muscle aches, intestinal cramping, bladder issues, and stomach pain.
Splenda has replaced aspartame as the number one artificial sweetener in foods and beverages; aspartame's popularity declined after the public learned that that it is both a neurotoxin and an underlying cause of chronic illness. As Dr. Bowen warns, "We should not be fooled again into accepting the safety of a toxic chemical on the blessing of the FDA and saturation advertising. In terms of potential long-term human toxicity we should regard sucralose with its chemical cousin DDT, the insecticide now outlawed because of its horrendous long term toxicities at even minute trace levels in human, avian, and mammalian tissues."
ANH-USA is filing a citizen petition with the Federal Trade Commission regarding Splenda's deceptive advertising. Splenda's online marketing includes a series of YouTube videos called Splenda Essential Choices for Healthy Living, which features an ADA-certified Registered Dietitian giving people health advice - though we might call it "natural health lite" - including prominent endorsements of Splenda Essentials. Their marketing clearly targets health-conscious people interested in nutrition, while trying to pass off a toxic chemical as healthy.