About twice as many kids are drinking sugar-free soft drinks as they were ten years ago, a new study says. While it’s good news that kids are consuming less sugar, it’s unknown what long-term effect artificial sweeteners have on kids.
Analyzing data from a 2008 health survey of 42,000 Americans, the study found that 12.5 percent of kids had had a diet drink in the last 24 hours, up from 6 percent a decade earlier. This is in keeping with an overall upward trend among adults as more and more diet beverages hit the market.
Although no one can predict the effects of artificial sweeteners like aspartame, saccharin and sucralose in humans, laboratory studies in rats have shown weight gain over time.
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