Hi Dane, great question! I get this question all the time. My short answer is that not all artificial sweeteners are equal, and moderation is key. If I were you I would stick to natural fruit sugars, and if you do want a low calorie sweetener, try to use ones that come from plants. Some of my favorites are xylitol and stevia. The less processed the better.
Do artificial sweeteners pose any health risks? There are links, but not necessary black and white "cause and effect" scenarios from artificial sweeteners. There are possible links of artificial sweeteners to diabetes, heart disease, metabolic syndrome, and weight gain. Again, those are links, and it also may depend on the person and other factors.
To keep it short. Treat artificial sweeteners as a treat, and if you do use one, try to stick with more natural ones such as stevia (which is my personal favorite). Great question!