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Aspartame or NutraSweet - a warning

Beware of Aspartame or NutraSweet - it's not as sweet as it sounds!

Aspartame - NutraSweet

Aspartame is usually found in the form of sugar free gums, breath mints, Equal, diet soft drinks, kool aid type drinks and foods laced with sweetener. Better known as NutraSweet, Equal, Spoonfuls, Natrasweet, Canderal, Diabetisweet etc.

It is a chemical substitute for sugar. We find it in diet drinks and sweet-and-low type products, things that have had the sugar taken out and have been replaced with the "sugar-free" Aspartame or NutraSweet.

So what's so bad about Aspartame - NutraSweet?

First of all, the tests that were done on the safety of this were falsified, to get it approved and get it on the market. The tests that were submitted showed that the lab animals in those tests started to have seizures, they had brain tumors, they had pancreatic tumors, they had mammary tumors and they had uterine tumors. But all of this was covered up and erased when the tests were submitted.

The reason for this is that with this information, this chemical sweetener would not have been approved. Instead, it has been approved as a food additive, not a drug.

How was Aspartame - NutraSweet discovered?

It was discovered as a drug in the 1960's by a scientist, who was making a drug for peptic ulcers. He licked his fingers, said it tasted sweet and decided to make it into a sweetener instead of a drug for peptic ulcers. It was approved in 1974 as a sweetener, but the approval was rescinded because of the brain tumor issue. That issue remains a very valid one today.

Why is Aspartame - NutraSweet bad?

First of all, it's a synthetic compound. It contains two amino acids: phenylalanine 50% and aspartic acid 40%. Phenylalanine lowers the seizure threshold in some individuals.

The Head of Brain Science at MIT said that it causes seizures and can cause brain tumors. Aspartic acid is 40% of the molecule and according to Dr. John Olney, the world expert on aspartic acid, who held a news conference in connection with aspartame and brain tumors, said that it caused lesions in the brain of lab animals. What's more, it changed the DNA, which means that it will affect future generations.

In laboratory tests, the toxic effects of this skipped a generation and went on to third generation in the lab animal experiments. This produced morbidity, obesity and sexually dysfunctional lab animals.

Aspartame has an effect on children too. A child began to have migraines when she started drinking the Kool Aid flavored drink that came in sample packets in the mail. She developed chest pains and heart attack-like symptoms. She was taken to a heart specialist for this. Finally, she was carried in from a school field trip, after having a grand mal seizure. It is the worst kind of seizure. You lose consciousness, you fall to the ground in a foetal position and you're just out of it. There are many kinds of seizures that people can experience from aspartame and from other causes as well, but the grand mal is the top of the line, as far as danger goes.

Where else can I find Aspartame - NutraSweet other than cold drinks and sweeteners?

NutraSweet, Equal, Spoonfuls, Natrasweet, Canderal, Diabetisweet
Most "Diet and Diabetic Sugar Free" products on the NZ market
Bottled water with aspartame, also flavored bottled waters
Some children's vitamins
Children's fruit flavored drinks
Juice drinks
A lot of fibre cereals
Sugar-free chewing gum, such as Extra
All diet soft drinks, Diet Coke, Lemonade, Tonic etc.

Just look on the label of products for the name Aspartame.

Aspartame (L-aspartyl-L-phenylalanyl-methyl-ester) is about 200 times as sweet as sugar with virtually no calories. It sounds ideal for those who need to have the sweet taste, but not the calories - BUT IT IS NOT!

When Aspartame - NutraSweet is taken into the body, it breaks down to:

1) Phenylalanine (50%), which can be neurotoxic and in some susceptible people will cause seizures

2) Aspartic acid (40%), which can cause brain damage in the developing brain

3) Methanol (10%), which turns into formaldehyde embalming fluid - an obvious toxin

The ingredients in aspartame are chemicals found naturally in foods, but is a little different when it is ingested as a sweetener with little or no "food around it."

A pediatrician the other day prescribed Metamucil for an infant that had a little constipation. He said: be sure to get the orange kind, because it tastes sweet. It's flavored. And of course, it had aspartame in it.


Hearing loss & tinnitus
Numbness of extremities
Blurred vision
Blindness /eye problems
Memory loss
Slurred speech
Mild to suicidal depression
Personality & mood changes
Anxiety attacks
Hyperactivity (child or adult)
Gastrointestinal disorders
Skin lesions
Muscle cramps & joint pain
PMS & / or menstrual irregularities
Chest pain, arrhythmia
Increased appetite

Sensitive people would more likely notice the connection between ingestion and symptoms. Some people do not notice anything until they stop taking aspartame in any form and then they feel marvelous. Death is also listed as a symptom.

Chronic fatigue syndrome
Post-polio syndrome
Lyme disease
Meniere's disease
Alzheimer's disease
Multiple sclerosis
Mercury sensitivity from amalgam fillings
Non-Hodgkin's lymphoma
Graves disease

Leanne James has more information on aspartame, so contact her if you would like to know more.

"The Deadly Deception" cites chapters and verses of the cover-up by Searle and the FDA.

Here are some highlights from the book.

1969 - Dr. Harry Waisman fed aspartame mixed with milk to monkeys. One died after 300 days of aspartame and five others had grand mal seizures. Searle deleted this negative study when the company submitted safety evidence to the FDA.

1970 - The FDA banned Cyclamate during the time that the safety of saccharin was being questioned. The time seemed ripe for aspartame.

1971 - Dr. John Olney, a research psychiatrist, told Searle that aspartic acid caused "holes in the brains of mice."

1974 - Searle people said these studies raised "no health problems." Searle told the FDA about these findings after approval was granted.

1975 - Many of the test animals fed aspartame developed large tumors. These were NOT reported to the FDA.

1977 - Despite the many complaints about aspartame, William Conlon and Thomas Sullivan, US attorneys, took no action. In five years, the statute of limitations for a grand jury investigation expired. A year later Conlon took a position with the law firm that represents Searle. (U.S. Attorney, Samuel Skinner did the same and ended up Chief of Staff in Bush's White House. ed.)

1980 - A Public Board of Inquiry of three scientists was activated. These (2 MDs and one PhD) voted to ban aspartame. Because of those negative findings, a five member Commissioner's Team of Scientists was impaneled: Three said ban; two said it was safe. Another member was added. You guessed it: deadlock. Dr. Jacqueline Verrett, PhD, toxicologist on the team said, "Bureau officials were working up to a whitewash. Safety questions remain unanswered."

1981 - Dr. Arthur Hull Hayes, Jr. was appointed the new FDA Commissioner and over-ruled the Public Board of Inquiry's recommended ban of aspartame. He said his approval was part of the Reagan administration's new reform! Throughout the 1980's, Searle has pointed out that the best evidence of aspartame's safety was the fact that it had been approved in more than 60 countries. But these foreign approvals had been based on these controversial tests, and the questionable approval of the FDA. It was approved as a "food additive" and hence, exempt from continued safety monitoring. (Searle is not obligated to monitor any adverse reactions).

1983 - The National Soft Drink Association wrote to the FDA that aspartame was breaking down in warm climates. But the Association later accepted aspartame. Dr. Hayes' office approved the use of aspartame in soft drinks just two months before he quit his job as FDA chief. He then obtained a job with a public relations firm who represents NutraSweet.

1984 - Seven million pounds of NutraSweet was swallowed by about 100,000 people.

1985 - Reports of side effects mount.

1987 - ACSN is founded by Mary Nash Stoddard and consumer advocate, James Turner. They believe aspartame should be recalled and retested as a drug.

A grass-roots effort to stop the use of aspartame would be like us common folk trying to get Columbia to stop producing heroin. If we can't get Searle to stop (because it is big bucks for them), we can at least ask our patients and friends to.

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The Naturopathic Team
Ideal Health

Disclaimer: The health information presented here has been written for the New Zealand health consumer. It is of a general nature and is only intended to provide a summary of the subjects covered and is intended to be used for educational and general information purposes only. It is not intended as medical advice or as a means to diagnose, treat, cure or prescribe for any particular condition or disease. You assume all responsibility for the treatment which may be undertaken as a result of the information on this site, or treatment recommended by any other party. While all care has been taken to ensure the accuracy of the information, no responsibility or liability is accepted, and no person should act in reliance on any statement contained in the information provided. All health ailments should be treated by a qualified health professional.

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