A 2013 review uncovered the hidden health issues of Splenda long after many people consumed large quantities of it.
The sweetener is a highly recommended ingredient for baked goods. However, the baking process triggers chemical reactions in sucralose that produce toxic chlorinated compounds. These include dioxins, long-lived chemical compounds usually found in industrial processes and considered to be carcinogens.
Chlorinated compounds are the tip of the iceberg of health problems associated with sucralose. Researchers from North Carolina State University identified many other concerns that the manufacturers of the artificial sweetener – McNeil Nutritionals, a subsidiary company of Johnson & Johnson – did not catch during testing or reveal to the public.
Despite being advertised as safe for people with diabetes, Splenda changes metabolic parameters by raising blood sugar and insulin levels. It disrupts a wide range of organochlorine class pharmaceutical drugs and triggers bodily functions that it should not be able to influence.
Sucralose leaves behind unknown compounds that pose potential consequences on health and the environment. It reduces the number of good bacteria in the gastrointestinal tract, increases the population of harmful bacteria, affects the recovery of the gut microflora for months, and changes the pH level of the intestinal environment.
Last but not least, the NC State researchers found that McNeil and Johnson & Johnson have not yet resolved the toxicological problems of exposure to sucralose over extended periods. As of the time of the study, no one knew if excessive use of Splenda causes damage to DNA, produces toxic compounds during baking, accumulates inside the body instead of getting broken down and expelled, or interacts with treatments.
The most severe problem identified by the report was the dubious safety of heated sucralose. The manufacturers claimed that Splenda remains stable at cooking temperatures. However, the results of multiple independent studies showed that exposure to heat levels starting at 246 F (119 C) causes the sweetener to break down.