The study published in the Canadian Medical Association Journal (CMAJ) states that, "emerging data indicate that artificial, or non-nutritive sweeteners may have negative effects on metabolism, gut bacteria and appetite, although the evidence is conflicting", as quoted by PTI.
Another issue with these studies is that they do not accurately represent how people use sweeteners in their real lives, due to the shortness of the studies.
"Despite the fact that millions of individuals routinely consume artificial sweeteners, relatively few patients have been included in clinical trials of these products", said author Dr. Ryan Zarychanski, Assistant Professor, Rady Faculty of Health Sciences, University of Manitoba.
Lead author and assistant professor Dr Meghan Azad, added: "Caution is warranted until the long-term health effects of artificial sweeteners are fully characterised".
Artificial sweeteners, such as aspartame, sucralose and stevia, are used to make numerous most popular soft drinks and according to researchers, consumption of them is widespread and increasing.
But to get your sweet fix you might opt for a "diet" option instead, packed with low-calorie or calorie-free artificial sweeteners.
Other research has even pointed to artificial sweeteners disrupting the brain's sensors and feelings of satisfaction. They are found in diet drinks or other similar products which people consume when they are trying to lower their sugar consumption and lose weight.
Scientists said they should no longer be regarded as the healthier alternative and urge the public to stick to water or milk.
It turned out that many diet foods and drinks containing sugar substitutes, on the contrary, provoke weight gain, not loss. "We know a lot of people are consuming them in foods and not realizing it".
The team of scientists from Boston University believe the artificial sweeteners including aspartame and saccharine maybe affecting the blood vessels, eventually triggering strokes and dementia.
There are more studies on the effects of these chemicals on health, but their results are not consistent.
While researchers conducting the observational studies took into account factors such as the overall quality of participants' diets, no cause-and-effect relations can be drawn. Artificial sweeteners were the product of the need to provide a sweet experience to the ones who were supposed to steer clear of natural sugar. Observational studies that link the sweeteners to health problems do not prove the sweeteners themselves are responsible.
The European Food Safety Agency supports claims by artificial sweetener manufacturers that taking them benefits teeth, and can control blood sugar levels.
You may be reaching for artificial sweeteners thinking they're better for you because they have zero calories in drinks, sweets and other processed goods. She uses a variety of artificial sweeteners in her coffee, tea, cereal, on bitter fruit, in smoothies and in baking.