Dangers of Aspartame

Aspartame is the main ingredient found in branded additives such as NutraSweet®, Equal™, and Spoonful™. It is made up of aspartic acid, glutamate, phenylalanine, and methanol.

Over 75% of the adverse reactions to food additives reported to the FDA are from aspartame. Reactions reported include: headaches/migraines, nausea, abdominal pains, fatigue, sleep and vision problems, anxiety attacks, and asthma/chest tightness.

Aspartate and glutamate act as neurotransmitters in the brain. Too much of either can kill certain neurons by allowing too much calcium into the cells triggering excessive amounts of free radicals (bad cells). These substances are referred to as “excitoxins” because they stimulate or “excite” the neural cells to death. Seventy-five percent or more of the neural cells in a particular area of the brain are killed before symptoms of chronic illness are noticed. A few of the illnesses that have been shown to be contributed to by long-tern exposure to excitatory amino acid damage include: Multiple Sclerosis (MS), ALS, memory loss, hormonal problems, hearing loss, epilepsy, Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease, hypoglycemia, AIDS, dementia, brain lesions, and neuroendocrine disorders.

Phenylalanine is an amino acid normally found in the brain. Those people with a genetic disorder called phenylketonuria (PKU) cannot metabolize phenylalanine. Ingesting aspartame can lead to high (sometimes lethal) levels of phenylalanine in the brain. Many people who do not have PKU, but who have eaten large amounts of aspartame over a long period of time, have been shown to have excessive levels of phenylalanine in the blood. High levels of phenylalanine in the brain can cause serotonin levels to decrease, leading to emotional disorders such as depression.

Ten percent of aspartame is methanol (aka wood alcohol). Methanol breaks down into formic acid and formaldehyde in the body. Formaldehyde is a deadly neurotoxin and a known carcinogen that causes retinal (eye) damage, birth defects, and interferes with DNA replication.

In addition to being used as a tabletop sweetener, aspartame is found in over 5,000 food and beverage products such as low-calorie diet drinks and desserts, cocoa mixes, cereal, breath mints, chewing gum (sugarless), powdered fruit and tea drinks, and even toothpaste. [Copyright © 2004 World Image Naturals™, Inc. www.worldimagenaturals.com ]

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