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The next time you consider using Splenda as a sweetener for you or your children think twice before reaching for this conglomeration of chemicals. Splenda, also known as Sucrolose, is created in a chemist's pot through a complicated chemical process with dozens of chemicals you or I can barely pronounce. One of my rules for natural eating made easy is: if you can't pronounce it, don't eat it.
1,6-dichloro-1,6-dideoxy-BETA-D-fructofuranosyl-4-chloro-4-deoxy-alpha-D-galactopyranoside: this is Splenda's chemical formula. To end up with this synthetic chemical compound that's 300 times sweeter than table sugar, Johnson & Johnson, a well-known drug manufacturer and creator of Splenda, whips up the following batch of chemicals.

Splenda's five-step chemical process

1. White sugar (sucrose) is tritylated with trityl chloride in the presence of dimethylformamide and 4-methylmorpholine and the tritylated sucrose is then acetylated with aceticanhydride, which results in the chemical compound TRISPA

2. TRISPA (6,1', 6�-tri-O-trityl-penta-O-acetylsucrose) is chlorinated with hydrogen chloride in the presence of toluene, which results in the chemical compound 4-PAS

3. 4-PAS (sucrose 2,3,4,3', 4�-pentaacetate) is heated along with methyl isobutyl ketone and acetic acid, which results in the chemical compound 6-PAS

4. 6-PAS (sucrose 2,3,6,3', 4�-pentaacetate) is chlorinated with thionyl chloride along with toluene and benzyltriethylammonium chloride, which results in the chemical compound TOSPA

5. TOSPA (sucralose pentaacetate) is chemically treated with methanol (wood alcohol is a poison) along with sodium methoxide to produce sucralose, also known as Splenda.

Splenda is a daunting mixture of chemicals. It is registered as "chlorinated sucrose," and is not found anywhere in nature. Chlorinated compounds like Splenda are also known as chlorocarbons. A "chlorocarbon" is defined as any chlorine-containing compound that has chlorine in its chemical arrangement. Splenda has chlorocarbon relatives that have frightening side effects. DDT and other pesticide chlorocarbons are known for causing genetic, organ and reproductive damage, which is why so many people are concerned about the safety of this unnatural sweetener. Recently, a lawsuit filed by Equal’s maker against Splenda’s marketer stated, "Splenda is not natural in any sense of the word. Instead, the truth about Splenda is that it is sweetened with a synthetic compound that is the result of a complex chemical process."

Animal research studies on Splenda found that rats fed Splenda showed up to forty percent shrinkage of the thymus gland which is the foundation of our immune system. Does it make good sense to put the immune system in harms way by exposing you or a loved one to the potential risks of this controversial artificial sweetener? If you prefer to use a sweetener that doesn't enter the bloodstream and consequently raise blood sugar and insulin levels, than I recommend that you try all natural Stevia. It is extracted from a plant that grows in Paraguay, South America. Stevia has been used as a sweetener for over 400 years and over 900 research papers have been written on Stevia. It is extraordinarily safe and sweet, but, unlike Splenda, there is no controversy over the safety of this all-natural sweetener. Don't use too much; too much Stevia can leave a mild, bitter aftertaste. This all natural, extremely sweet product is 200 times sweeter than table sugar, yet it has zero calories. Simply add it to your food slowly until you reach the desired sweetness and enjoy!

Stevia Sweetness Equivalents:
To equal one cup of sugar, try:
1/3 to 1/2 teaspoon extract powder
1 teaspoon clear liquid
1 tablespoon concentrate (water based)
1-1/2 to 2 tablespoons ground or cut leaf
1-1/2 to 2 tablespoons powder with filler
18 to 24 individual packets
To equal one cup of brown sugar, try:
2 teaspoons concentrate (water-based)

Asaki, H. & Yokoyama, Y. (1975). �Dried-leaf extracts of Stevia. Toxicological tests,� Shokuhin Kogyo: 18(20), 34-43.
Kinghorn, A. Douglas, Ph.D. �Food Ingredient Safety Review, Stevia rebaudiana leaves,� 16 March 1992, 6.

Sasaki, Y.F., Kawaguchi, S., Kamaya, A., Oshita, M., Kabasawa, K., Iwama, K., Taniguchi, K. & Tsuda, S.
(2002). "Mutation Research/Genetic Toxicology and Environmental Mutagenesis," Elsevier Science: 519(1-2), 103-119.

"Sucralose and shrunken thymus glands," New Scientist. 23
            -- Dr. James D. Krystosik