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Sugar substitute ingredients used in diet beverages and a host of other products have been studied intensely for decades.

I have a very nice patient who comes to appointments with questions about everything except his main medical problem. These are from his last visit:

“My sister told me not to drink diet sodas because they have toxic chemicals. I’ve heard pasta is really bad for you. Eating meat is not good for the environment, right?”

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Barbara Intermill is a registered dietitian nutritionist and syndicated columnist. She is the author of “Quinn-Essential Nutrition: The Uncomplicated Science of Eating.” Email her at barbara@quinnessentialnutrition.com.