Mothers-to-be who consume artificial sweeteners may be more likely to have fat ...

Mothers-to-be who consume artificial sweeteners may be more likely to have fat ...
Mothers-to-be who consume artificial sweeteners may be more likely to have fat ...
Mothers-to-be who consume artificial sweeteners may be more likely to have fat children, study warns Researchers tested two sweeteners on pregnant rats to see impact on their pups Rats given stevia or aspartame had fatter babies with an altered gut microbiome Stevia or aspartame are both common diet soda sugar alternatives in the UK Although study was on rats scientist says it could apply to human mums as well

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Mothers-to-be who consume lots of artificial sweeteners may be more likely to have children who end up obese, a study suggests.

Canadian researchers found pregnant rats fed stevia or aspartame – two of the most common sweeteners – had pups that were fatter.

But experts believe the findings may also apply to expectant mothers, given an array of other studies have found similar in humans.

Professor Raylene Reimer, of the University of Calgary, said: 'A mother's diet during pregnancy is very important for the short- and long-term health of their infants.

'Following diet guidelines and staying within recommended weight gain guidelines for pregnancy are key steps to take.'  

While the researchers did not test individual soft drinks, Diet Coke contains aspartame, one of the artificial sweeteners tested in the study

While the researchers did not test individual soft drinks, Diet Coke contains aspartame, one of the artificial sweeteners tested in the study

What does the NHS say about artificial sweeteners?

Sucralose is one of several artificial sweeteners approved for use in the UK.

Dietitian Emma Carder states: 'Research into sweeteners shows they're perfectly safe to eat or drink on a daily basis as part of a healthy diet.

She also says they're a really useful alternative for people with diabetes who need to watch their blood sugar levels while still enjoying their favourite foods.

'Like sugar, sweeteners provide a sweet taste, but what sets them apart is that, after consumption, they do not increase blood sugar levels,' she says.

It's been suggested that the use of artificial sweeteners may have a stimulating effect on appetite and, therefore, may play a role in weight gain and obesity.

But research into sweeteners

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