Aspartame is the most widely usedin the world. With over 6,000 major food products in the world utilizing its sweetening power, literally billions of people have the taste of it. NutraSweet, Tropicana Slim and equal are just few of the well-known trademark brands of sweetener in the US being used to sweeten popular soda brands and chewing gums.
However, researches conducted on aspartame revealed that it is might not be totally harmless to humans and if taken in large doses would eventually result to various health conditions. Attempts to retract its FDA approval have been prove futile at the moment. The only thing we can do is to avoid products using aspartame as sweetener as much as possible. Here are several of the risks posed by aspartame to one’s health.
1. Brain damages As an NMDA receptor antagonist, aspartame slows down the timely discharge of neurotransmitters and so instigating pain within human body. NMDA receptor antagonists are frequently utilized as a type of animal anaesthesia but not applicable for humans as NMDA receptor antagonists trigger brain damage in small mammals. Migraine, memory loss, brain tumours, brain lesions and headaches are some of the likely consequence of aspartame to humans.
2. Damage to the Lymphatic system An investigation carried out by MEDLINE revealed that 92% of clinical studies supported by non-industry organizations found out that aspartame could be the culprit behind the diseases in the human lymphatic system such as lymphoma, peripheral nerve cancer, leukaemia and fibromyalgia.
3. Cancers Science magazine’s July 2007 issue featured12 leading health experts supporting the sanction for aspartame. The Issue also presented as letter for Dr. Andrew Von Eschnbach, the then US Food and Drug Administration commissioner asking him to approve the revocation of the approval of aspartame due to the massive evidences that this substance causes cancers. But the status of aspartame as an approved food additive has not been changed yet due to industry lobbyists that influence politicians and the ever-present conflict between environmentalists and industry capitalists.
If ingested regularly, aspartame can also be the factors behind numerous serious health conditions. It has the capacity to eventually cause death. When buying food and beverages, it is important to make healthy choices. By only organic whole and natural products that pose no danger to your over-all health.
What makes aspartame dangerous?
The make-up of aspartame is mainly phenylalanine and aspartic acid. To carry a methyl group that provides the bulk of sweetness, phenylalanine is being modified synthetically. The methyl ester produced by bonding the phenylalanine aids in breaking off the methyl group easily and to develop methanol.
It is widely claimed that aspartame causes no harm whatsoever in humans. This claim is supported by the notion that methanol is also found in vegetables and fruits. But the major difference with the synthetically produced methanol and the natural methanol found in fruits and vegetables is that methanol in the latter is tightly bonded to pectin. Pectin has the ability to pass the digestive tract safely. But the synthetic methanol found in aspartame cannot be easily eliminated in the digestive system as it is not bonded or attached with anything.
Methanol produced by aspartame is a dangerous neurotoxin as it performs like a Trojan horse transmitted to vulnerable tissues in human body, such as the bone marrow and brain. On reaching these organs, the alcohol dehydrogenise (ADH) enzyme changes methanol into formaldehyde that causes negative effect to the formation of human DNA. The problem is humans have no mechanism that changes the toxic formaldehyde into non-toxic formic acid.
If you think of an alternative for aspartame, consider stevia an herb that is 400 times sweeter than common sugar minus the dangers of aspartame. It is widely used in Germany and Japan and is now slowly gaining prominence in the US and some Asian countries.
The author of the article works as a dietician and nutritionist. He loves sharing his expertise on proper nutrition and proper dieting. He is also a contributing author to