The Dangers Of Aspartame
Aspartame Isn’t As Safe As You Think
You may be wondering, why am I writing an article about the dangers of Aspartame, and what does it have to do with weight loss. In case you don’t know aspartame is the main sweetener in most of the diet products on the market today. Aspartame is packaged under familiar names like Nutra Sweet, Equal, Spoonful, and Equal-Measure. This sweetener has been linked to various ailments and is becoming a big concern in the scientific community.
Aspartame was discovered by accident in 1965 when James Schlatter, a chemist of G.D. Searle Company, was testing an anti-ulcer drug and accidentally licked his finger which had some of the chemical on it and discovered it was very sweet and the company saw the potential for commercial use in dry goods. The sweetener was originally approved for dry goods on July 26, 1974, but objections filed by neuroscience researcher Dr John W. Olney and Consumer attorney James Turner in August 1974 caused the FDA to put it on hold, but apparently through the use of some underhanded tactics it was approved in 1981 for dry goods and 1983 for carbonated beverages.
At first aspartame was believed to be linked to such diseases as: fibromyalgia, restless leg syndrome, migraines, tumors, allergy, multiple sclerosis, bladder cancer, central nervous system, infertility, weight control, weight gain, and Parkinson’s disease. It was later determined that aspartame causes the body to mimic these disease symptoms, and was labeled as aspartame disease.
Methanol, or wood alcohol makes up 10% of aspartame and when the temperature of aspartame reaches 86 degrees the methanol converts to formaldehyde, or better known as embalming fluid and then to formic acid. Symptoms from methanol poisoning include headaches, ear buzzing, dizziness, nausea, gastrointestinal disturbances, memory lapses, and many other conditions. The soldiers in Desert Storm were given large amounts of aspartame-sweetened beverages, which had been heated to over 86 degrees fahrenheit in the desert sun. When these soldiers returned home they had numerous disorders similar to what has been seen in persons who have been poisoned by formaldehyde. The methanol conversion in the beverages may have been a contributing factor in these illnesses.
Another chemical in aspartame is phenylalanine, which must be avoided by people with a rare genetic condition called phenylketonuria which prevents phenylalanine from being properly metabolized. Excessive amounts of phenylalanine can cause the levels of serotonin in the brain to decrease, leading to emotional disorders such as depression. Aspartame’s potential to cause weight gain is because of phenylalanine and aspartic acid which makes up 90% of aspartame.
Aspartame can be found in thousands of products such as:
There is more to be told about the effects of aspartame, but I believe you get the message. I used to be a heavy aspartame user, but suffered no ill effects except during the summer when I had a lot of iced tea with nutria-sweet. I would get some really bad head aches and just figured it was the heat, now I’m not so sure, but at any rate I have switched to truvia which doesn’t have all of those chemicals. The choice is up to you, but I am going to avoid products with aspartame from now on.
var _gaq = _gaq || ; _gaq.push(['_setAccount', 'UA-32936394-1']); _gaq.push(['_trackPageview']);
Filed under: Nutrition
Like this post? Subscribe to my RSS feed and get loads more!