Sodium saccharinate: benefits and harms
Sodium saccharinate is a zero-calorie chemical sweetener. In appearance, it resembles small crystals of a transparent color, poorly soluble in water, and in comparison with granulated sugar, it melts at a higher temperature regime.
The sweetener sodium saccharinate is also called saccharin, sodium saccharin dihydrate, soluble saccharin, sodium saccharin dihydrate, sodium 2-sulfobenzoic and imide sodium salt dihydrate and other synonyms.
Saccharin is the first artificial substitute for granulated sugar, 200-300 times sweeter than it, and is recommended for use in diseases such as diabetes. In addition, it is often used by people who lead a healthy lifestyle and monitor their weight.
It is necessary to consider what are the benefits and harms of saccharinate in diabetes? Find out the basic properties and scope of use of the substance. And also find out how such a substance affects the human body?
General characteristics of the substance
Saccharin is the most popular sugar substitute and is included in foods for diabetics and people with healthy lifestyles. This substance has been used since 1879 in the food and pharmaceutical industries.
The additive can be found in carbonated and non-carbonated drinks, juices; confectionery – flakes, corn sticks, marmalade, jam, marshmallows; dairy dietary products – low-calorie yoghurts, curds and curds.
Also, sodium saccharinate is added to chewing gum, toothpastes, canned fish and preserves, in pickling and smoking. In the pharmaceutical field, it is used to impart a sweet taste to tablet coatings, as a sweet ingredient in syrups and various suspensions.
Sodium saccharin has a characteristic feature. This is because it imparts a metallic flavor to sweetened foods. And many do not like it, but today in the modern world there are many analogues of the substance that have avoided this drawback.
It often happens that food products are on sale that contain several different sugar substitutes, for example, sodium cyclamate. The following can be said about him:
- The food additive does not have a pronounced odor, but its characteristic feature is that it has a strong sweet taste.
- If you compare the supplement with any sweetener, then it turns out to be much sweeter, about 50 times.
- When mixing the substance with other sweeteners, the level of sweetness increases n-fold.
- Cyclamate is often a substitute for saccharin, it dissolves well in ordinary water, a little slower in an alcoholic liquid, and is not at all soluble in fats.
It should be noted that if the permissible dosage of the sugar substitute is exceeded, then a bright taste of metal is observed in the oral cavity of a person.
Harm and benefits of the supplement
Despite the fact that the additive is officially approved for use, many believe that this substance is deadly and has a detrimental effect on the human body.
Some scientists consider this substance to be a particularly dangerous carcinogen, with the regular use of which, a person increases the risk of malignant tumors.
Despite this statement, these are just words that are not supported by clinical studies and real evidence. And in the vast majority of cases, saccharin is considered the safest sweetener, because it has been studied as fully as possible when compared to the rest.
Almost all recipes for type 2 diabetics contain this substance, helping patients to eat healthy, tasty and varied.
Features of the use of saccharin in diabetes mellitus:
- The recommended dosage per day is calculated as follows: 5 mg of the substance can be consumed per kilogram of the patient’s weight.
- Any physician can guarantee the safety of such use as long as the patient does not exceed the prescribed dosage.
It is worth noting that saccharin is often mixed with sodium cyclamate to eliminate the bitter taste. But the latter substance can cause significant harm, it cannot be used if a person has renal failure.
It is advisable to emphasize that any sugar substitute has a choleretic effect, and if a patient has diabetes and pathology of the biliary tract, then it is better to refuse it.
As the above shows, adherence to the correct dosage of the substance will not harm health. As for the benefits, it is difficult to talk about it, because saccharinate is an additive that has no nutritional value.
It can be noted that it is an indispensable supplement against the background of diabetes mellitus, giving a sweet taste to dishes, but in no way affecting the patient’s condition, since it is fully excreted from the human body.
Synthetic and natural analogues
The stevia plant is an analogue of saccharin, which has no calories and does not in any way affect metabolic processes in the human body. The sweet taste (30 times sweeter than granulated sugar) is given by special substances contained in the leaves of the plant.
The homeland of this plant is Brazil, but today it is cultivated in many countries of the world, including in the south of Russia. Plants are used in the form of tinctures and powders, included in herbal tea, and the dried leaves can be brewed just like tea.
For example, corn porridge for type 2 diabetes with the addition of stevia powder will become much tastier, while due to the sweetness it will not harm the patient’s body. If we compare the plant with synthetic analogues, then it has a number of advantages in type 2 diabetes:
- Decrease in blood glucose concentration (this effect is applicable only in diabetes mellitus).
- Strengthening the walls of blood vessels.
- Reducing the likelihood of malignant neoplasms.
In addition, the plant can be consumed by young children. During pregnancy and lactation, it is better to abstain from sugar substitutes based on it, because the effect on the fetus has not been studied.
Synthetic analogs of saccharin:
- Aspartame does not have any taste, it is 200 times sweeter than sugar. It is worth noting that it is unstable to high temperature conditions, therefore it is strictly forbidden to add it to food during cooking (jam, compote).
- Acesulfame potassium is a food additive 200 times sweeter than granulated sugar, most often used in non-alcoholic products. An overdose of such a sweetener can provoke a violation of the functionality of the cardiovascular and nervous systems.
- Group of cyclamates. On the territory of the Russian Federation and in many other countries, only sodium is allowed, and potassium is prohibited. They dissolve well in liquids, can be added to food during cooking.
It should be noted that in the overwhelming majority of cases, products for diabetics combine several sugar substitutes at once, therefore, when using them, you must be extremely careful and read the labels so as not to provoke an overdose.
As for an absolutely healthy person, he can use various sugar substitutes, and they will not harm the body. However, some scientists argue that such additives are capable of accumulating in the human body, as a result of which, over time, they will have a negative effect on internal organs and systems.
In any case, despite the fact that there is no convincing evidence of harm from saccharin, doctors recommend not to get carried away with such a drug for diabetes, and to add it to food in strictly limited quantities.
Overuse of the supplement leads to the development of hyperglycemia. In other words, exceeding the recommended dosage leads to an increase in the concentration of glucose in the human body.