There is such controversy over diet sugars and insulin resistance. Is there a relationship?

You've asked a question nutrigenomic researchers are still working to answer. Studies of artificial sweeteners are mixed, with some indicating that people using them eat fewer calories and lose weight or maintain a stable weight. However, several studies in both animal models and humans, have demonstrated that artificial sweeteners were associated with weight gain, (1-3) which might increase the risk of developing insulin resistance—a condition in which body cells do not respond properly to insulin and thus cannot easily absorb glucose from the blood-stream. Additionally, artificial sweeteners appear to change the host microbiome, leading to decreased satiety, altered glucose homeostasis, and are associated with increased caloric consumption and weight gain. (2-6)

As with many controversial topics in health, further research is needed. Most of the studies to date have a relatively short duration making it difficult to ascertain long-term effects enough of drinking artificially sweetened beverages on metabolism and insulin regulation, but the results suggest that artificial sweeteners may potentially have some of the same negative effects on insulin and weight as sugar does.


This question was answered by Leah Linder, ND