Diet Drinks Fool Your Body's Metabolism

Sweetness signals the presence of energy and its intensity reflects the amount of energy present

Sweetness signals the presence of energy and its intensity reflects the amount of energy present

The sweet taste of the sweeteners can fool the metabolism of the body and believes that we are consuming more calories. But diet products confuses mind and creates a fake image that there are few calories in bodies.

Researchers said a sweettasting, lower-calorie drink can trigger a greater metabolic response than drinks with higher calories, explaining an association between artificial sweeteners and diabetes. When sweetness and calories are matched, the calories are properly metabolized, and this is registered by brain reward circuits.

However, diet products that carry a sweet taste tricks the brain into thinking that there are lesser calories to burn, causing metabolism to drop, storing up the products as fat, researchers at Yale University in USA found.

Senior author of the study, which has been published in the journal Current Biology, Professor Dana Small said: "A calorie is not a calorie".

For the new study, scientists scanned the brains of 15 people when they were drinking diet drinks, and compared them to regular beverages.

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"The most important implication is namely the fate of calories consumed in the mismatch conditions". As a result, the person could be compelled to overeat.

"In other words, the assumption that more calories trigger greater metabolic and brain response is wrong", Prof Small said.

"They may be free of calories but not of consequences and diabetes is only one of them".

According to her, human bodies are evolved to use the available natural sources of energy efficiently, but, the modern food environment consists of energy sources that are not seen by the bodies before. "Flavor, on the other hand, which occurs when taste and smell are integrated, is unique to particular energy sources (in nature), with preferences learned".

"The statement that a calorie is not a calorie is gobbledegook", said Tom Sanders, Professor emeritus of Nutrition and Dietetics, at King's College London.

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