Aspartame is used to sweeten diet sodas, chewing gum, Jello, sugar-free candy and hundreds of other drinks and foods consumed every day by people around the world. Aspartame is made up of three chemicals: aspartic acid, phenylalanine, and methanol. Aspartate acts as a neurotransmitter in the brain by making it easier for the transmission of information from neuron to neuron. Too much aspartate triggers numerous free radicals that kill brain cells. Basically, the neural cells are stimulated to death.
Unborn babies and children are especially vulnerable to the effects of aspartame because the blood-brain barrier has not fully developed. Pregnant women seeking to have a healthy baby should never drink diet sodas or consume foods sweetened with the artificial sweetener known as NutraSweet, Equal, Spoonful and Equal-Measure. Aspartame is over 100 times sweeter than natural sweeteners such as cane sugar.
Aspartame was discovered by accident in 1965 by James Schlatter, a chemist of G.D. Searle Company. The toxin was approved for dry goods in 1981 and for carbonated beverages in 1983. In 1985, Monsanto purchased G.D. Searle and made Searle Pharmaceuticals and The NutraSweet Company separate subsidiaries, according to Dr. Mercola.
Ten percent of aspartame is methanol. Free methanol is created from aspartame when it is heated to above 86 Fahrenheit. This temperature is easily exceeded when cooking foods sweetened with aspartame, such as Jello pudding. According to Dr. Mercola:
Methanol breaks down into formaldehyde in the body. Formaldehyde is a deadly neurotoxin. An EPA assessment of methanol states that methanol 'is considered a cumulative poison due to the low rate of excretion once it is absorbed. In the body, methanol is oxidized to formaldehyde.' They recommend a limit of consumption of 7.8 mg/day. A one-liter (approx. 1 quart) aspartame-sweetened beverage contains about 56 mg of methanol. Heavy users of aspartame-containing products consume as much as 250 mg of methanol daily or 32 times the EPA limit.
Formaldehyde is a well-known carcinogen, causing retinal damage and birth defects, as well as several cancers.
Never assume something is safe because it has been approved by the FDA. Seventy-five percent of all complaints registered by the FDA are for adverse reactions to aspartame, according to an article on PreventDisease.com.
The following information is taken from Dangers of Aspartame on PreventDisease.com:
Erik Millstone, a researcher at the Science Policy Research Unit of Sussex University has compiled thousands of pages of evidence, some of which have been obtained using the freedom of information act 23, showing: 1. Laboratory tests were faked and dangers were concealed. 2. Tumors were removed from animals and animals that had died were "restored to life" in laboratory records. 3. False and misleading statements were made to the FDA. 4. The two US Attorneys given the task of bringing fraud charges against the aspartame manufacturer took positions with the manufacturer's law firm, letting the statute of limitations run out. 5. The Commissioner of the FDA overruled the objections of the FDA's own scientific board of inquiry. Shortly after that decision, he took a position with Burson-Marsteller, the firm in charge of public relations for G.D. Searle.
There have been, and continue to be conflicts of interest between employees of the FDA and big business. No one appears to have any authority over the Federal Food and Drug Administration. No one is ever held responsible for the many diseases and deaths caused by chemicals approved as safe for human consumption by the FDA when evidence proves the substance to be harmful and/or lethal in some cases.
Consumers must do their own research. PreventDisease.com, Natural News and Dr. Mercola are excellent sites to check for news, research and natural health advice. Stop consuming diet drinks and foods sweetened with aspartame. Research shows that aspartame is the primary cause of dozens of diseases and some deaths.