Cordell E Logan
Aspartame was discovered by accident in 1965 when James Schlatter, a chemist for G.D. Searle Co., was testing a drug for ulcers. It was approved for dry goods in 1981 and for carbonated beverages in 1983. However, in 1974 it was originally approved for dry goods, but neuroscience researcher Dr. John W. Olney put a hold on it. In 1985, Monsanto purchased G.D. Searle and made Searle Pharmaceuticals and NutraSweet Company separate subsidiaries.
The FDA reported that over 75% of adverse reactions to food additives are from Aspartame.
Aspartame is made up of aspartic acid (40%), phenylalanine (50%), and methanol (10%). Aspartic acid and glutamate are neurotransmitters. Too much of either one can kill certain brain neurons by allowing too much calcium to enter cells, which leads to an influx of free radicals that kill the cells. Excess of these amino acids can cross the “blood brain barrier” (BBB), especially in children. Problems include MS, ALS, memory loss, hormone imbalances, hearing loss, epilepsy, Alzheimer’s syndrome, Parkinson’s syndrome, hypoglycemia, dementia, brain lesions, and neuroendocrine disorders.
Phenylalanine is another amino acid and is normally found in the body (including the brain). Persons with the genetic disorder, phenylketonuria (PKU), have trouble utilizing phenylalanine. Excessive levels of phenylalanine from long use of aspartame (or due to PKU) can cause decreased levels of serotonin in the brain, leading to depression, memory loss, and emotional disorders.
Methanol (wood alcohol/poison) causes blindness and death. Methanol is released in the small intestine when the methyl group of aspartame is acted upon by he enzyme chymotrysin. Free methanol occurs when aspartame is heated above 86 F (that can occur in storage, or as part of a food such as Jello). Methanol breaks down into formic acid and formaldehyde in the body. Formaldehyde is a deadly neurotoxin and can cause retinal damage, DNA damage, and birth defects. It is carcinogenic. Methanol poisoning symptoms include headache, tinnitus, dizziness, nausea, weakness, chills, memory loss, numbness, and behavioral disturbances. Many troops from Desert Storm who consumed large amounts of aspartame-sweetened beverages that were exposed to temperatures above 86 F returned home with numerous symptoms of formaldehyde poisoning.
Diketopiperazine (DKP) is a byproduct of aspartame metabolism. It has been implicated in brain tumors.
The American Diabetes Association recommended using aspartame. This has been shown to lead to the precipitation of clinical diabetes, poor diabetic control, aggravation of complications such as retinopathy, cataracts, neuropathy, GI problems, and convulsions. A report showed that over 600 pilots had adverse symptoms from aspartame that included grand mal seizures in the cockpit (Aspartame Consumer Safety Network).
Memory loss is a common symptom of aspartame ingestion. Aspartame manufacturers claim the side effects are all false. Hopefully educated and thinking people will realize that big money and politics don’t have a place in health.
What about other synthetic sweeteners? Are they better? Don’t bet on it.
One alternative is Sucanate®, a granulated sugar cane product with the natural minerals etc. intact. Maple syrup, honey, Stevia, and related products are much better in limited amounts. As always, stay close to nature and you won’t go wrong.