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Toxic Sweetener: All About Aspartame

You may have seen or heard the word before – ASPARTAME. An artificial sweetener, it’s one of the two most commonly used food additives in the products you buy from the grocery store and eat in restaurants. (The other is MSG). You may or may not think aspartame is necessary or unnecessary, tasty or disgusting, or harmful to your health or not. Whatever you think, it’s always best to get the facts about the things you put in your body – for your own health’s sake.

Sweet Subs

Thousands of different kinds of foods and drinks, especially diet products, contain artificial sweeteners, which can be called by any of the following names (and others not on this list):

  • NutraSweet
  • Equal
  • Sweet and Low
  • Splenda
  • Sunette

These brand names cover up the real names of the additives, which include:

  • Aspartame
  • Saccharin
  • Cyclamate
  • Acessulfame-K

The fact is, some of the above additives had a very short run at popularity. Saccharin, for example, was found to cause cancer in lab animals – so it lost favor with consumers. It’s also been proven that, despite their use in diet products, all artifical sweeteners cause an increase in appetite – we think that’s just wrong.

No. 1 Additive

Today, aspartame is the No. 1 artificial sweetener added to foods. You’ll find it in everything from diet sodas, many packaged food products, medications, supplements and other items meant to be consumed (eaten or ingested) by human beings.

Unfortunately, aspartame also accounts for over 75% of negative reactions to food additives reported to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.

Full of …

Aspartame is made of the following ingredients:

  • 40% aspartic acid (an amino acid)
  • 50% phenylalanine (another type of amino acid)
  • 10% methyl alcohol OR methanol (wood alcohol)

One can of soda (12 oz.) sweetened with aspartame contains about 30 milligrams of methanol. And considering it doesn’t take much to exceed the daily limits of methanol your body can handle (as recommended by the Environmental Protection Agency), that’s a pretty scary amount.

Methanol is completely toxic to humans. Your body just doesn’t have the right kinds of enzymes needed to detoxify it. It takes five times longer to eliminate from your body than a similar amount of ethanol, which is the alcohol commonly found in beer, wine, whiskey and other alcoholic drinks. The ethanol found in certain foods (especially fruits) that naturally contain methanol works to protect your body against the harmful effects of the methanol. But aspartame doesn’t offer any of the same protection – at all.

Detoxify This

In order for your body to detoxify the wood alcohol (ethanol) in aspartame, it has to convert it to formaldehyde and then convert it again into something called formic acid – both of these are toxic metabolites that result in metabolic acidosis. When this happens, your body contains excess acidity and other health problems.

Scientists and researchers studying the effects of aspartame on the human body have also found that the additive could trigger or mimic other health problems like chronic fatigue syndrome, multiple sclerosis, hypothyroidism, Alzheimer’s, attention deficit disorder, epilepsy and many more. If this scares you, that's good. These are all serious health problems – people who suffer from them (whether it’s due to aspartame or something else) may very well spend most of their time, money and energy trying to cure themselves or adjusting to life with disease and illness.

Avoid Aspartame

The fact is, aspartame is not something that should be in our food. It does not occur naturally in food and our bodies just aren’t designed to deal with it properly. But don’t worry; there are some key things you can do to minimize your exposure to this harmful additive.

Read the label. Get into the habit of always reading the labels of everything you consider eating or drinking, or putting on your skin, hair and nails.

Ask the pharmacist. Some medications (including children's medicines), drinks, candy and gum may have hidden amounts of aspartame in them. Always ask your pharmacist or doctor what is in the medicine you are taking.

Avoid it and replace it. Avoid artificially sweetened foods, drinks, medications, supplements or anything made with them. Even foods and drinks sweetened with white sugar or other natural sweeteners are better for you than something artificially sweetened. And finally, if it says sugar-free, don’t even touch it! That’s a dead giveaway the product you are about to put in your body contains artificial sweeteners.

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astucieuse331
astucieuse331 posted in Friends:
I've always felt the same way. My one best friend gossiped behind my back, used me, all that girl stuff. She took me for advantage and we had a bunch of fights because of her finding a new friend and completely acting as if I didn't exist, and I told her to give me at least some attention every once in a while if she can't even continue to talk to me daily. And.. I lost her. Well, she lost me. We both lost each other. But then I realized.. it's the people that you least expect to be nice to you you'll find kindness in. Why? Based on personal experience, and I'll tell you the story: For my gym class, me and my peers were supposed to make a group for a dance. This was when my best friend had found a new friend already, and the time at which we had a few fights because of that. Of course, I relied on my best friend to count me in her dance group. At lunchtime, I sat together with my best friend, and we ate our lunches in silence. All of a sudden, I brought up the dance groups and asked her straightforwardly: "Can I join your group?" No reply. "Kelly, can I join your group?" No reply. "I mean, since our class is uneven, I found it fair that there'd be a group of five, you know?" None at all. Kelly ignored me straight off the bat, leaving me speechless. My mind raced with thoughts, and I thought, maybe it's not worth having Kelly as a friend. A few days later, we were playing Dodgeball for gym. I was on Kelly's team, and overheard her talking with her new friends about who to pick for the dance group. One of her friends mentioned me, and Kelly said: "Oh no, we shouldn't pick her because _____ (I don't know what she said then)." I was shocked, but was anticipating it, so when the time came to choose groups, I saw my friend, Luke, ask two girls, Cher and Bridgette, to join their group. Surprisingly, Cher and Bridgette actually accepted him, and so I thought, "Wow, if they accepted Luke, they might accept me aswell!" and so built up the courage to ask them if I could join. Even though Cher and Bridgette were mean to me sometimes, I knew that I had to risk it and see what'd happen. Afterall, rejection is just another opportunity to find a better group. Little did I know, it'd be the best choice of my life. They were so happy, and even thanked me for joining them! I was speechless once more; I never knew that the peers that I thought I would never be friends with would actually be my friends!  So yeah, that's what I learnt, and I never regretted learning that fact. Ever since then, though, I've learnt not to trust people as much as I used to anymore. I learnt that independency is what works for me, what I was meant for in terms of socializing or working. But, other things may work for you. If you still want a friend, you can be independent and wait for the right person. However, if you still want a real friend, you can wait, but still mingle (hang out) with other people! I I'm not going to make fun of you because I know how you've felt, just as I stated in my past problem before. But you can move on from those friends, they're not worth your time and certainly don't deserve you as a friend. Trust me, if it's meant to be, you'll definitely find a true friend. But if it's not, you may become like me, finding happiness in my own way. I want to remind you though-- you don't need someone to stay happy, or keep you company. This may sound silly, but you can even have your own invisible friends! I've had one, but that's very rarely for me. It's not silly though if you see the general idea; usually these friends are made from different dimensions of your personality or just because of will. There's a lot more fish in the sea, though, so I'm sure you'll find a true friend that's meant for you  :) Take care, and I hope you'll find a true friend soon!
reply about 10 hours
ts01
ts01 posted in Friends:
im so sorry you girls feel that way.true friends are there, its just easier to find users because they are more plentiful. dont give up, you will find real friends eventually
reply about 11 hours
lolflowergirl
lolflowergirl posted in Friends:
i feel alone too
reply about 13 hours
kayme123
kayme123 posted in Friends:
i know the feeling. but i got taken off a website instead of my friends. i can assure you they probably feel the same and are missing you, BUT its not worth dwelling over it. friends come and go without any choice in life and trust me, i lost the love of my life and my two of the best friends in the world. The thing is, you have to move on, because they wouldent want you feeling sad over them right? they'd want you to be the happy person you were when you were with them! for starters, i'll be your friend so your not scared to make some new ones. To be honest, i went through the exact same thing as you did and it DOES hurt very bad. But once you find some people that are willing to make you feel better, you know you've chosen the right friends again
reply about 22 hours
Irene_love
Irene_love posted in Style:
"1.am.3m0" wrote:Hey. Im also turning 15 soon. So dont worry you arent alone hahah. Start dressing for your shape and also find whats comfortable.  Because if you wear something that is uncomfortable you wont be happy and happiness is the best look :) Most of the time I wear jeans with a graphic tshirt or singlet and a cardigan or light jacket. Hoodies are great for winter. And I wear combat boots like doc martins and converse. Hope I helped somehow! :)
reply about 23 hours

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