The Shocking Story of How Aspartame Became Legal


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artificial sugarDid you know that Aspartame was banned by the FDA twice? How is this product legal now?

The bittersweet argument over whether Aspartame is safe or not has been going on for a long time. On one side we have medical evidence that suggests we should avoid using it and on the other side we lean on the FDA’s approval that suggests it is safe. Since generally that seems to be the factor that many continue to hold trust based upon, I thought we could look into the Aspartame story to find out how it came to be accepted as safe by the FDA. You would think that something so widely used and so well accepted would have quite the pristine story leading to its acceptance. I imagine one will discover otherwise after reading this post.

It all starts in the mid 1960’s with a company called G.D. Searle. One of their chemists accidentally creates aspartame while trying to create a cure for stomach ulcers. Searle decides to put aspartame through a testing process which eventually leads to its approval by the FDA. Not long after, serious health effects begin to arise and G.D. Searle comes under fire for their testing practices. It is revealed that the testing process of Aspartame was among the worst the investigators had ever seen and that in fact the product was unsafe for use. Aspartame triggers the first criminal investigation of a manufacturer put into place by the FDA in 1977. By 1980 the FDA bans aspartame from use after having 3 independent scientists study the sweetener. It was determined that one main health effects was that it had a high chance of inducing brain tumors. At this point it was clear that aspartame was not fit to be used in foods and banned is where it stayed, but not for long.

Early in 1981 Searle Chairman Donald Rumsfeld (who is a former Secretary of Defense.. surprise surprise) vowed to “call in his markers,” to get it approved. January 21, 1981, the day after Ronald Reagan’s inauguration, Searle took the steps to re-apply aspartame’s approval for use by the FDA. Ronald Reagans’ new FDA commissioner Arthur Hayes Hull, Jr., appointed a 5-person Scientific Commission to review the board of inquiry’s decision. It did not take long for the panel to decide 3-2 in favor of maintaining the ban of aspartame. Hull then decided to appoint a 6th member to the board, which created a tie in the voting, 3-3. Hull then decided to personally break the tie and approve aspartame for use. Hull later left the FDA under allegations of impropriety, served briefly as Provost at New York Medical College, and then took a position with Burston-Marsteller. Burstone-Marstella is the chief public relations firm for both Monsanto and GD Searle. Since that time he has never spoken publicly about aspartame.

It is clear to this point that if anything the safety of aspartame is incredibly shaky.  It has already been through a process of being banned and without the illegitimate un-banning of the product, it would not be being used today. Makes you wonder how much corruption and money was involved with names like Rumsfeld, Reagan and Hull involved so heavily. In 1985, Monsanto decides to purchase the aspartame patent from G.D. Searle. Remember that Arthur Hull now had the connection to Monsanto. Monsanto did not seem too concerned with the past challenges and ugly image aspartame had based on its past. I personally find this comical as Monsanto’s products are banned in many countries and of all companies to buy the product they seem to fit best as they are champions of producing incredibly unsafe and untested products and making sure they stay in the market place.

Since then, aspartame has been under a lot of attack by scientists, doctors, chemists and consumers about it’s safety and neurotoxic properties. Piles of comprehensive studies have been completed that show aspartame is a cause for over 90 serious health problems such as cancer, leukemia, headaches, seizures, fibromyalgia, and epilepsy just to name a few. We have written several articles discussing various affects of aspartame. Aspartame Leukemia Link. Aspartame and Brain Damage.

For a full timeline on aspartame’s legal and safety battles, expand the box below.

Timeline

December 1965– While working on an ulcer drug, James Schlatter, a chemist at G.D. Searle, accidentally discovers aspartame, a substance that is 180 times sweeter than sugar yet has no calories.

Spring 1967– Searle begins the safety tests on aspartame that are necessary for applying for FDA approval of food additives.

Fall 1967– Dr. Harold Waisman, a biochemist at the University of Wisconsin, conducts aspartame safety tests on infant monkeys on behalf of the Searle Company. Of the seven monkeys that were being fed aspartame mixed with milk, one dies and five others have grand mal seizures.

November 1970– Cyclamate, the reigning low-calorie artificial sweetener — is pulled off the market after some scientists associate it with cancer. Questions are also raised about safety of saccharin, the only other artificial sweetener on the market, leaving the field wide open for aspartame.

December 18, 1970– Searle Company executives lay out a “Food and Drug Sweetener Strategy’ that they feel will put the FDA into a positive frame of mind about aspartame. An internal policy memo describes psychological tactics the company should use to bring the FDA into a subconscious spirit of participation” with them on aspartame and get FDA regulators into the “habit of saying, “Yes”.”

Spring 1971– Neuroscientist Dr. John Olney (whose pioneering work with monosodium glutamate was responsible for having it removed from baby foods) informs Searle that his studies show that aspartic acid (one of the ingredients of aspartame) caused holes in the brains of infant mice. One of Searle’s own researchers confirmed Dr. Olney’s findings in a similar study.

February 1973– After spending tens of millions of dollars conducting safety tests, the G.D. Searle Company applies for FDA approval and submits over 100 studies they claim support aspartame’s safety.

March 5, 1973– One of the first FDA scientists to review the aspartame safety data states that “the information provided (by Searle) is inadequate to permit an evaluation of the potential toxicity of aspartame”. She says in her report that in order to be certain that aspartame is safe, further clinical tests are needed.

May 1974– Attorney, Jim Turner (consumer advocate who was instrumental in getting cyclamate taken off the market) meets with Searle representatives to discuss Dr. Olney’s 1971 study which showed that aspartic acid caused holes in the brains of infant mice.

July 26, 1974– The FDA grants aspartame its first approval for restricted use in dry foods.

August 1974– Jim Turner and Dr. John Olney file the first objections against aspartame’s approval.

March 24, 1976– Turner and Olney’s petition triggers an FDA investigation of the laboratory practices of aspartame’s manufacturer, G.D. Searle. The investigation finds Searle’s testing procedures shoddy, full of inaccuracies and “manipulated” test data. The investigators report they “had never seen anything as bad as Searle’s testing.”

January 10, 1977– The FDA formally requests the U.S. Attorney’s office to begin grand jury proceedings to investigate whether indictments should be filed against Searle for knowingly misrepresenting findings and “concealing material facts and making false statements” in aspartame safety tests. This is the first time in the FDA’s history that they request a criminal investigation of a manufacturer.

January 26, 1977– While the grand jury probe is underway, Sidley & Austin, the law firm representing Searle, begins job negotiations with the U.S. Attorney in charge of the investigation, Samuel Skinner.

March 8, 1977– G. D. Searle hires prominent Washington insider Donald Rumsfeld as the new CEO to try to turn the beleaguered company around. A former Member of Congress and Secretary of Defense in the Ford Administration, Rumsfeld brings in several of his Washington cronies as top management.

July 1, 1977– Samuel Skinner leaves the U.S. Attorney’s office and takes a job with Searle’s law firm. (see Jan. 26th)

August 1, 1977– The Bressler Report, compiled by FDA investigators and headed by Jerome Bressler, is released. The report finds that 98 of the 196 animals died during one of Searle’s studies and weren’t autopsied until later dates, in some cases over one year after death. Many other errors and inconsistencies are noted. For example, a rat was reported alive, then dead, then alive, then dead again; a mass, a uterine polyp, and ovarian neoplasms were found in animals but not reported or diagnosed in Searle’s reports.

December 8, 1977– U.S. Attorney Skinner’s withdrawal and resignation stalls the Searle grand jury investigation for so long that the statue of limitations on the aspartame charges runs out. The grand jury investigation is dropped.

June 1, 1979– The FDA established a Public Board of Inquiry (PBOI) to rule on safety issues surrounding NutraSweet.

September 30, 1980– The Public Board of Inquiry concludes NutraSweet should not be approved pending further investigations of brain tumors in animals. The board states it “has not been presented with proof of reasonable certainty that aspartame is safe for use as a food additive.”

January 1981– Donald Rumsfeld, CEO of Searle, states in a sales meeting that he is going to make a big push to get aspartame approved within the year. Rumsfeld says he will use his political pull in Washington, rather than scientific means, to make sure it gets approved.

January 21, 1981– Ronald Reagan is sworn in as President of the United States. Reagan’s transition team, which includes Donald Rumsfeld, CEO of G. D. Searle, hand picks Dr. Arthur Hull Hayes Jr. to be the new FDA Commissioner.

March, 1981– An FDA commissioner’s panel is established to review issues raised by the Public Board of Inquiry.

May 19, 1981– Three of six in-house FDA scientists who were responsible for reviewing the brain tumor issues, Dr. Robert Condon, Dr. Satya Dubey, and Dr. Douglas Park, advise against approval of NutraSweet, stating on the record that the Searle tests are unreliable and not adequate to determine the safety of aspartame.

July 15, 1981– In one of his first official acts, Dr. Arthur Hayes Jr., the new FDA commissioner, overrules the Public Board of Inquiry, ignores the recommendations of his own internal FDA team and approves NutraSweet for dry products. Hayes says that aspartame has been shown to be safe for its’ proposed uses and says few compounds have withstood such detailed testing and repeated close scrutiny.

October 15, 1982– The FDA announces that Searle has filed a petition that aspartame be approved as a sweetener in carbonated beverages and other liquids.

July 1, 1983– The National Soft Drink Association (NSDA) urges the FDA to delay approval of aspartame for carbonated beverages pending further testing because aspartame is very unstable in liquid form. When liquid aspartame is stored in temperatures above 85 degrees Fahrenheit, it breaks down into DKP and formaldehyde, both of which are known toxins.

July 8, 1983– The National Soft Drink Association drafts an objection to the final ruling which permits the use of aspartame in carbonated beverages and syrup bases and requests a hearing on the objections. The association says that Searle has not provided responsible certainty that aspartame and its’ degradation products are safe for use in soft drinks.

August 8, 1983– Consumer Attorney, Jim Turner of the Community Nutrition Institute and Dr. Woodrow Monte, Arizona State University’s Director of Food Science and Nutritional Laboratories, file suit with the FDA objecting to aspartame approval based on unresolved safety issues.

September, 1983– FDA Commissioner Hayes resigns under a cloud of controversy about his taking unauthorized rides aboard a General Foods jet. (General foods is a major customer of NutraSweet) Burson-Marsteller, Searle’s public relation firm (which also represented several of NutraSweet’s major users), immediately hires Hayes as senior scientific consultant.

Fall 1983– The first carbonated beverages containing aspartame are sold for public consumption.

November 1984– Center for Disease Control (CDC) “Evaluation of consumer complaints related to aspartame use.” (summary by B. Mullarkey)

November 3, 1987– U.S. hearing, “NutraSweet: Health and Safety Concerns,” Committee on Labor and Human Resources, Senator Howard Metzenbaum, chairman.

Sources:
http://www.sweetpoison.com/aspartame-side-effects.html
http://rense.com/general33/legal.htm
http://dorway.com/


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More From 'Awareness'

CE provides a space for free thinkers to explore and discuss new, alternative information and ideas. The goal? Question everything, think differently, spread love and live a joy filled life.

  1. be healthy

    Great article and info here. I know there can be a lot of argument about aspartame out there but i think if people knew this it would make it a lot harder to continue to defend something that really makes no sense to be consuming.
    thx!

    Reply
  2. Julane

    The information here is excellent and I have read about this myself in past years. However, the grammar problems may detract credibility from the content.

    Reply
    • ” the grammar problems may detract credibility from the content.” Any one who follows anything blindly is off to bad start anyways… The idea is to inspire a higher intellects to research for your self.. Dont really see how credibility and grammar has to do with it… Any free thinking meat bag should wonder why you would want to eat anything man made over natural anyways….. Just saying….

      Reply
    • I so agree Julane. Grammar and punctuation are signs of education. They are not rocket science, but when you write about rocket science or any science, it’s more credible to read with proper language usage. I am not a grammar Nazi and resent that term. It’s usually those who can’t spell accusing others of being one.

      Reply
    • reza ray

      so many scientists whose second language is english and are not fluent in language but expert in their fields of study . if you have problem with their grammar , you have bigger problems . see a Dr.

      Reply
    • Lori

      Also when bringing in political bias – especially when the liberals have the most corrupt, lying government in history presently in power – also leaves a bad aspartame like taste in ones mouth. Even forgiving the bad grammar, I would have accepted your report more easily if presented without the petty digs to further a personal agenda.

      Reply
      • b

        The worst ever? You don’t find it strange that Rumsfeld gets these positions, and has been apart of it all for over 40 years? You must be a stay at home mom, who follows fox news very well, get lost useless!!!

        Reply
        • STS

          As a stay-at-home mom, who is both intelligent and well-informed, I resent your comment. That was degrading to a large group of strong women who are the backbone of our society, not to mention the single most important demographic in making changes in consumer food choices, as we are responsible for a large percentage of household food purchases. Think twice before throwing out the insults because you truly do sound ignorant when you do.

          Reply
          • MAS

            Thank you STS, as a SAHM, you took the words right out of my mouth.

            Reply
      • angie

        Great to know others have reacted terribly to that taste of poison on a stick ( that’s the only way I can describe it ) It is revolting. Also Thank you for the information so well presented and outlined. However I am HAPPY to proof-read your work for you anytime !

        Reply
      • RaNae

        Bottom line…The names mentioned were involved, can’t take it back now like it or not. The sweetner is not good to consume on any level period.

        Reply
      • Michele

        Sweetheart it was a republican president that approved it. Liberals are fighting to get it banned!! Spelling isn’t the issue..its the fact that its causing huge health issues..focus people.

        Reply
        • Jerrith

          I swear every article I read nowadays there are people who love to comment and draw that line in the sand over which party did what. When will you learn that neither side is good for us Americans. It’s time we stop support them all together and start thinking for all of us a whole. This stuff causes so many issues, I’m glad I was keen on what it does and cut it out years ago.

          Reply
          • red

            Agreed.Political parties are more dangerous than any artificial sweetener.

            I do have a question,though, If aspartame is as poisonous as claimed,and it’s in hundreds of products used by millions of people every day,shouldn’t we be dropping off like flies? Not trying to be argumentative,I’m just a skeptic of claims made by anyone. We can see direct correlations between smoking and lung cancer, or alcohol and cirrhosis. Where is the direct correlation between aspartame and fatality other than claims that it’s bad for you?

            Reply
      • cindy

        It is petty for people to be offended because of the political names involved. If they are involved it is NOT a politically biased to bring it to light. That is how corruption in government goes unchecked – when people are soooo biased to their own political agenda they ignore what “their” favorite politicians do as if they were not involved. Face the fact that it was those who used their political power to influence FDA policies in the wrong way.

        Reply
        • I would not say that is petty, unless there is no merit in what one is saying, but Lori is right. It is NOT petty to call shenanigans when they are so blatantly obvious. As this article is, the truth is stretched a lot to make Reagan’s role seem more front-line in this. He was merely elected president at this time, and appointed someone to the head of the FDA. The author makes it seem like Reagan was involved in conspiring to force feed aspartame into people’s mouths.

          “Makes you wonder how much corruption and money was involved with names like Rumsfeld, Reagan and Hull involved so heavily.” –that is just a line of BS. Reagan may not have known Hull’s corruption or connection to aspartame. Reagan had a problem with departments like the FDA, and ideologically opposed their existence, as they are an abuse of government, and Reagan was constantly fighting the liberal congress about government stretching its greedy paws too far. In all likelihood, Reagan was probably lied to about the studies and the process, showing the too far reaching hand of government within the FDA, banning substances and restricting businesses in a corrupt and tyrannical way -which is correct.

          The story above is not complete anyway, there are more people and events involved behind aspartame and how it was approved. First off, it was not accidentally made, it was made on purpose -it was accidentally tasted, and believed to be non-toxic. They had to get rid of the popular alternative sweetener of the time first by propaganda. I believe that was cyclamate, and is one case of corruption where a substance is banned by an overreaching government because they had better corporate interests and backroom deals with GD Searle -not because of alleged connections with the GOP.

          Ephedrine is another substance banned by the FDA because of the dangers of ridiculous use and excessive consumption, but used normally can eliminate the need for inhalers -the FDA has better corporate interests in Big Pharmacy to keep those inhalers rolling off the line. It’s always ban one thing to make way for another. When companies get into this kind of relationship with a government branch -especially one that was created to inherit powers from congress and yet avoid all the checks and balances congress itself must endure- the problem we have there is not political ideology, it is corporatism. Corporatism has nothing to do with free market principles, conservatism, or the GOP, but everything to do with greedy politicians and too big government -the thing caused by progressives/liberals/socialists. Reagan, in fighting government growth, may not have known he was helping to clear the way for a substance that was bad for people, so saying he was heavily involved is more than speculation or conjecture; it is a lie. And it is petty.

          Reply
          • Ignorance is no excuse, when in office it is his job to find these things out. Would you give your consent to poison millions of men, women and children? Or would you dig a little deeper in to the studies that are being conducted. All the pros and cons have to be considered before making such a huge decision. Hmmmm, makes me wonder WHY?

            Reply
          • Janet

            i agree the story is incomplete & inaccurate.. There are too many conflicts of interest going on for the government to be in charge of protecting the peoples interests. The decks are stacked by them… for profits. Don’t trust your health to your government, health providers or the FDA.

            Reply
          • arlene holt

            Right on Chris!

            Reply
    • WRS71

      Agreed. I’ll have less difficulty taking the information seriously if it’s presented without spelling, grammatical or punctuation errors. Please take this into consideration when proofreading your work before publishing it.

      Reply
      • Pam Rogers

        I read the article and didn’t catch any mistakes. It was informative and a quick read. I’m stopping my Diet Coke craze now. Tell us – what specific edits would you make?

        Reply
      • justin day

        your a pompous ass! the article is real and aspartame does harm people! fucking arrogant cunt you are! fuck spelling its the content that matters not spelling your probably believe your tv anyway so your useless

        Reply
        • Just Sayin'

          justin day, are you attacking emma? if so, you should re-read her post. she is not disagreeing with the post. i believe her point is the content is valid and the grammar is not so important.
          ugly name calling is completely unnecessary and says more about you than your target. grow up.

          Reply
          • Great response, Just Sayin’. Was appalled by Justin Day’s response. No need for that language nor statements of that type. Replies should deal with the issues of the article.

            Reply
      • Emma

        Seriously? I am brilliant at spelling but am not as well educated as my husband, who has several degrees but can’t spell worth shit.

        Reply
      • haley

        Completely agree. If you’re publishing anything to the internet beyond your personal blog, you should have enough respect for language as a whole to proofread your articles. Unless you want us to “collectively evolve” backward into illiteracy.

        Reply
      • Mr. Mark

        Are you serious???? Have a diet soda. Maybe that’ll clear things up for you…

        Reply
        • R

          our son has been a diabetic since he was 4 all our health care providers recomended products containing artificial sweeteners. When he first began having seizures in his late teens, first question asked? is he diabetic. Drs. are hesitant to relate his seizures to aspartame. Why I wonder

          Reply
          • ronda

            i am also diabetic and my dr told me it is really much better to have real sugar in small amouts instead of artificial sweetner the diatician relayed the same message and when using artificial sweetner they add more sodium because they have to find a way to “make it taste good to the consumer” i have been drinking diet this and sugar free that and since i have been using real sugar in the smaller doses my health is eventually improving ie not sick all the time memoery loss improving etc even my diabetes is under better control

            Reply
          • Jess

            Dr’s are there for a paycheck. Healthy kids = unhealthy paychecks. Maybe you should take it upon yourselves to eliminate the aspartame and see how he does. I can bet his condition improves.

            Reply
        • haley

          Yes, Mr. Mark, we’re serious. Grammar matters if you want to come off as legitimate.

          Reply
          • Tara

            Really Bob? You are criticizing grammar? Your second sentence is grammatically incorrect. The content was excellent & I thank the author!

            Reply
          • Hansimglück

            Utinam essem bonus grammaticus! If I only were a good grammaticist. Scaliger, 16th century. So much depends on a good use of language. It is not “appearances”.

            Reply
          • bob

            I agree with haley. If your trying to report on something serious, at least take a serious look at proofreading your work. Other than that, good job attempting to enlighten us. Kthnxbai

            Reply
          • bane

            i have a skin disorder that was caused by aspertame and the fertilizer plant that blew up in texas was in a lawsuit with monsanto.obama signed the monsanto protection act theres more to it than you think!

            Reply
          • Mimi

            And that’s how people are brainwashed. “But his grammar is perfect, he must be legit. How eloquent, he must be educated, henceforth legit” look past the appearances people!!!!!

            Reply
  3. Penny

    Why am I not surprised that the FDA approves this stuff. When you look at the other nonsense they approve, one can’t be too shocked. Thanks for the info on this one.
    As for grammar, didn’t notice too much but in the end so long as the message is understood and we keep an open mind, it shouldn’t matter :)

    Reply
  4. Victoria

    Absolutely, Julane.

    Reply
  5. teresa reilly

    Thank you for this information, I have never trusted these people and their so called tests as the result is to serve the purpose ofin lining their pockets.

    Reply
  6. Bernadette

    It’s all about the money if they can make money they sell it

    Reply
  7. I never understand why people get so worked up over things like Aspartame. Listen, the information about the pros and cons is out there so for those who want to make educated decisions can. Nobody is forcing you to drink diet soda or other items with Aspartame. People need to take accountability for what they put in their body and stop assuming the government is giving them all the answers. Stop living in the dark and do something for yourself and stop complaining.

    Reply
    • Tijana

      GPS Tracker – actually your assumption is incorrect. The dairy industry is lobbying the FDA to allow them to add aspartame to milk without including it on the label (http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/02/26/aspartame-milk_n_2764729.html). If they are successful (which wouldn’t surprise me in the least given the FDA’s corruption and the amount of money big dairy can throw at the issue) then people would be consuming aspartame unknowingly. I’m all for personal responsibility but the FDA is a government agency whose role is supposed to be to keep corporate greed at the expense of the health of the people in check – instead they have become shills for the greediest of the greedy companies. This is beyond personal responsibility, it is corruption at the highest level and control of the food supply by those who would poison the people for a quick buck.

      Reply
    • John

      Remember, lots and lots of people do not have a computer, nor do they have internet access or watch TV…millions of Americans rely on the government to make the right choices simply because they them self have no way to get informed.

      Reply
      • And look at the recent controversy around energy drinks… news media actually reported people having heart attacks from drinking just a few of them in a day… They are banned from being sold in parts of the UAE

        When your kids are out with their friends buying something that could give them a heart attack dont you think there is a problem here? Young people arent sitting there researching health info on their computers so we have no choice but to put faith in food companies to not give us products that poison us.

        Reply
    • So, you think it’s okay for the Government to knowingly allow an unsafe, and possibly deadly, chemical to be added to our food and beverages? People need to take accountability for the ingredients in the foods they eat?
      I hope you aren’t as big an idiot as this post would infer.
      I would bet that you are ALL FOR Government gun control…

      Reply
      • Government allows cigarettes and hell, a host of all things that may or may not be bad for an individual. Certain chemicals affect certain people in a particularly BAD way. Bees don’t bother me, but may kill someone who is allergic to them..does not mean we need to kill all the bees. Point is that we live in a free society where you can do whatever you want to yourself. Yes, aspartame may not agree with you, but others it may be ok. REMEMBER, aspartame is a SUGAR substitute and SUGAR is BAD. Not like we did not know that but there are studies that will tell you that SUGAR will kill you, make you fat, add to heart disease, etc. SO, aspartame may actually save some folks by becoming lean. As someone else said here, if your ingesting something, its your responsibility to know what it is and how it may affect you. If not, go see a dietician, a specialist, your family doctor, or GOD FORBID, google it and read pros and cons before you ingest anything that is not natural or organic.

        Reply
        • debi

          i would be interested to see the evidence correlating ‘diet’ drinks and foods with weight loss. Removing fats from our food and replacing it with sugar or fake sugar substitutes means that the hormonal functions of the body do not have the necessary fats to function, which leads to many diseases. if there is evidence, i will gladly review this. unfortunately it is not only the diet drinks which contain this poison, and it takes an education to learn how to decipher the ingredients on food packaging, not to mention the little loopholes such as ‘natural flavouring’. if aspartame was so innocent why is not marketed as sucralose. and while i am on this rant, why have they combined stevia with aspartame and called it truvia. Stevia is a natural sweetener, plant based sweetener, which helps balance blood glucose levels. if the creation of lean people was the aim, surely this would be more appropriate.

          Reply
    • Jason

      Totally disagree. The lone person does not have the expertise, knowledge, funding, etc. to study whether or not a drug or food product is harmful to their health. Even with the FDA out there testing products, a person is up against a huge arsenal of weapons a company can use to create misinformation. They can hire their own scientists to ‘study’ their products and release incomplete or very tainted studies that show their product is real. Often these studies are published without mentioning who funded them. For consumers to protect ourselves, we have to pool our resources and fund organizations and agencies like the FDA to be non-biased in their regulatory approach. They need a mandate to ban harmful substances precisely because of the potential misinformation food and drug companies can release. F&D companies will spend countless dollars on advertising to promote their potentially harmful products, and a regulator without the power to ban substances would not have the funding the combat every F&D company’s wrong assertion in the media.

      That being said, it is a shame that we can’t always trust our regulators to be non-biased. However, I would challenge you to find a better solution that doesn’t involve you checking the label of every product you buy, googling its ingredients, and reading ‘both sides of the story’.

      Reply
      • Cliff

        My son brought this to my attention and I’m glad I’ve read it: I think we have to draw our own conclusions by following all avenues of knowledge. I’m sure the author was trying to be helpful in bringing aspartame to our attention and I will be avoiding the product.

        We have to be on our toes at all times when it comes to such products – and drugs: I was switching between TV channels a few weeks ago when I came across a documentary about Januvia which is a drug for diabetics.

        Januvia is linked to pancreatic cancer and other ‘side effects’ and I had been really ill for several weeks until I stopped taking the drug!

        Drug research and manufacture should be none-profit making and controlled by the state.

        Reply
      • Dave

        As a person who tries to live their life with common sense as much as possible …i have consumed products with Aspartame, and have gotten headaches each time… on a more basic note…. Aspartame IS NOT a natural substance it IS a chemical, and therefore is not good for us period…. why does the argument need to go beyond that?
        Someone is making money and someone else is making money from that person to keep this product in the marketplace…period…. lets get real its how the system works PERIOD..!!!!

        Reply
        • james kite

          Chemicals are natural.

          Natural does not mean safe.

          How any chemical interacts with its environment is what is of concern and what the chances of a negative reaction are likely to be in any given environment.

          Reply
  8. Deb

    GPS…that should also apply to vaccinations as well!

    Reply
    • Chriggle

      I agree totally, and medications.

      Reply
  9. DD

    With all the spelling and grammatical errors, this article loses its credibility. Shame.

    Reply
    • I spotted one possible grammatical error only. And didn’t see any spelling errors. Anyway, in this era only a pedant would be so offended that they would miss what is being said due to a snit over dicey sentence construction. Some authors actually strive to “burn” their sentences like that. As long as one gets the message, who cares? This content is very important and easily transcends any grammarian school marm critique.

      Reply
      • Agree on the spelling..it’s almost 5 am. here and I bet I’d make a mistake or 2 and if I had a lot of aspartame,my brain’s messed up,I have short term memory and ca’nt remember words. You people just complain too much..don’t shoot the messenger,you have too much time on your hands,I have nerve damage in my arms and can’t type as good either,I had 1 unnsucessfull operation..give me a break..like daaaah!

        Reply
  10. - Collective Evolution

    The Dean Bean(DD) 😉 I don’t see any spelling or grammatical errors, either or it still doesn’t lose it’s credibility.

    • Randy

      You made one of the same mistakes as the author. Possessive of “it” is “its”. “It’s” means “it is”.

      Reply
      • John

        Who the hell cares?

        Reply
        • The people who don’t care are the ones who can’t spell properly and use poor grammar.

          Reply
        • John – You should not end a sentence with a preposition. Also, hell is not descriptive of “who”. Hence, you are fragmenting your sentence with just the first three words and by utilizing “cares” at the end of your statement it makes the reader believe that you are replying “who” “cares” yet have taken the time out to ASK “who cares”? Sounds like you do. Just sayin’.

          Reply
          • rrr555

            grammar police idiot is you. cannot you get meaning in that you read for the words get in the way.

            Reply
  11. Chriggle

    What irritates me is that artificial sweeteners are hidden in so many foods and drinks/medicines that you wouldn’t expect to find them in. I read almost every label in the supermarket now, just to be sure.
    I have avoided artificial sweeteners as far as I can for over 3 years now, based on another article I read back then about the neurological effects of sweeteners on the brain in fibromyalgia and myalgic encephomylitis sufferers. I have noticed a great improvement in my conditions (my medical history is complicated) and as such will not knowingly consume artificial sweeteners of any kind if at all possible. Yes, I have to be careful about my eating habits, but I choose high juice squash, water etc rather than diet drinks.

    Reply
    • Meghan

      Absolutely. When it’s hidden, we can’t knowingly avoid it can we.
      This is why it should be banned and illegal to repackage the stuff under some other name. The name game is how they get away with hiding this and several other evil chemical concoctions they push down our throats. It isn’t right…

      Reply
  12. I was pregnant when I realized I had a problem with aspertame. I started to lose my equalibrium and I started to fall down. I stopped drinking anything with artificial sweetners and the symptoms went away. This was 28 years ago.
    I started to check into this chemical and I found out that if your baby has an aversion to this chemical the chances of the baby being born with Down Syndrom goes way up. Luckily she did not have that problem. I have to read lables now, it is difficult to find chewing gum, Alka Seltzer, Airborne, or other fizzie concotions without this stuff in it. If by chance I consume it I get whats called a painless maigraine. I feel like I am under water, and my equilabrium is affected.
    I just found out that aspertame is a by product of formeldehyde. Ummm. formeldehyde poop.

    Reply
  13. Tom

    For some more recent science (2002), try: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0273230002915424
    This summary of the safety research that has been conducted on aspertame since its approval concludes that the research is extensive, and the additive is no health threat. To quote the summary: “The safety testing of aspartame has gone well beyond that required to evaluate the safety of a food additive. When all the research on aspartame, including evaluations in both the premarketing and postmarketing periods, is examined as a whole, it is clear that aspartame is safe, and there are no unresolved questions regarding its safety under conditions of intended use.”

    Reply
    • Enlightenme

      Morons. They have ghost writers to do the dirty work. There are more complaints to the FDA from aspartame than ANY oTher food additive E V ER. I have personally used this shit to kill ants. It is a fucking neurotoxin. So, so many ailments would go away if people just get this shit outta there lives. No apologies to the grammar cops.

      Reply
    • John

      And you believe Monsanto doesn’t pay off those people to publish this? Really? Wow how gullible.

      Reply
      • Brad

        Oh Jesus, John… You hippies need to lay off the furtive fallacy. No, Monsanto is not paying off our scientific institutions. The logistics of paying off ALL the requisite parties makes it VASTLY cheaper for them to just not use harmful chemicals… which they don’t, because Aspartame has been tested to be safe.

        Seriously, when you accuse thousands of scientists and educators world-wide of simply being bought off by Monsanto, you’re assuming a moral superiority over people you’ve never met, who generally don’t get into such fields to make profits in the first place.

        I have just one question when you make such a claim: how much would it cost for Monsanto to buy your silence? How much money would you require to willfully remain silent while millions are poisoned? If your answer is “no amount in the world”, the same can probably be said about these people as well.

        I mean, seriously “And you believe Monsanto doesn’t pay off those people to publish this?”–what a fucking arrogant statement.

        Reply
        • sue me

          by the way …. not many people know about this – but there were more Nova Scotians trampled by gay giraffes on Easter Sunday …. than people ever killed by aspartame…..ever

          Reply
  14. Scott

    I checked up on this through http://www.snopes.com/medical/toxins/aspartame.asp and am wondering about the turth of this article.

    Reply
    • Enola

      Scott, this is one issue with which I do not trust the opinion of the usually-reputable Snopes. Their basis for the debunking is an email sent to them from somebody who works for the FDA. Of course the FDA is going to defend the product that they chose to make legal for public use. They can’t really be trusted anymore since they are continuously bought out by the companies who want to continue using their potentially harmful products.

      Reply
      • sue me

        Enola, please give some examples of the companies that continuously buy out the FDA so that they can continue using harmful products. be specific. who is doing it – and why are you not reporting them?

        Reply
      • I agree 100%, Enola..

        Reply
        • Brad

          Too bad the actual science doesn’t.

          Reply
    • Suzanne Camarillo

      From all my research, the negatives of aspartame are enough for me to choose to avoid it completely. I have read that it is the feces of E. coli bacteria produced under lab conditions. That’s more than enough for me.
      http://www.politics.ie/forum/health-social-affairs/123498-aspartame-fecal-matter-ecoli-bacteria.html

      Reply

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