A popular sugar substitute increases the risk of heart attacks and strokes
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The popular artificial sweetener erythritol is associated with an increased risk of heart attack and stroke, according to a new study.
People with higher levels of erythritol in their blood are at increased risk of heart seizure, stroke, or death. This conclusion was reached by researchers, including those from the Cleveland Clinic in the US, who examined more than 4,000 people in the US and Europe.
A study recently published in the journal Nature Medicine examined the effects of adding erythritol to either whole blood or isolated platelets and found that erythritol facilitates their activation and clot formation.
“The popularity of sweeteners such as like erythritol has risen rapidly in recent years, but more research is needed on its long-term effects, — said study author Stanley Hazen.
“Cardiovascular disease accumulates over time, and heart disease is the leading cause of death worldwide. We must make sure that the foods we eat are not hidden sources“, — he noted.
Erythritol is increasingly being used as a substitute for table sugar in low-calorie, low-carb, and keto foods.
who are looking for options to help control their sugar or calorie intake.
Erythritol — it is a chemical that is about 70% sweeter than sugar and is produced by fermenting corn.
However, the researchers said that once ingested, it is poorly metabolized in the body because some erythritol molecules enter the bloodstream and leave the body in mostly in the urine.
“Our study shows that when participants consumed a sweet drink with the amount of erythritol found in many processed foods, there was markedly elevated blood levels for several days” , — Dr. Hazen said.
The researchers said the results showed a link, but not a causal one. They called for follow-up studies to confirm their new findings in the general population.
”It is important that further research is done on the long-term effects of artificial sweeteners in general, and erythritol in particular, on the risk of heart attack and stroke ”, — Dr. Hazen added.
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