Aspartame Making a Deadly Comeback

Artificial sweeteners are displayed, on Wednesday, Sept. 17, 2014, in New York. Artificial sweeteners may set the stage for diabetes in some people by hampering the way their bodies handle sugar, according to results of a study released Wednesday by the journal Nature. (AP Photo/Jenny Kane)

The poisonous, no-calorie, synthetic sugar substitute aspartame is back with a new name, even after multitude studies have shown it to be toxic to people. Despite all of its terrible side effects, this chemical remains generally recognized as safe by the Food and Drug Administration—but that doesn’t mean you should consume it.

By James Spounias

Sold under the names NutraSweet, Equal, and now AminoSweet, the toxic sugar substitute aspartame is an example of all that is wrong with America when it comes to food safety, politics, and greed. Aspartame’s thousands of reported side effects include headaches, memory loss, seizures, vision loss, coma, lupus, fibromyalgia, muscular dystrophy, Alzheimer’s, chronic fatigue, diabetes, and depression. Even Food and Drug Administration (FDA) toxicologists and investigators have said it may be responsible for brain tumors and other severe health maladies, yet it’s legal.

Aspartame continues to be consumed by millions worldwide as an ingredient of numerous foods and drinks despite its controversial status ever since the FDA approved it in 1974. Consumer-oriented and public health-oriented scientists claimed aspartame may be linked to an increase in brain tumors, particularly in infants and children, while scientists tied to G.D. Searle of Skokie, Ill. stated the sweetener was safe.

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Shortly after aspartame was initially approved in 1974, the FDA put this approval on hold, in 1975, in light of the fact that FDA investigators revealed several problems with G.D. Searle’s scientific findings of safety, upon which the FDA had relied.  Then-FDA Commissioner Alexander M. Schmidt requested a task force look at the aspartame question, and the task force found that early tests were terribly flawed. For instance, tumors that developed in rats given aspartame were cut out and discarded, instead of being analyzed to see if they were brought on by aspartame and reported. Also, a rat that died during the study was not carefully dissected to determine whether the death was related to aspartame, and rats recorded as dead were later reported as alive. Finally, antibiotics were administered to rats but no reporting was made.

Schmidt testified to a 1975 Senate Subcommittee, stating that Searle’s tests were “at best sloppy,” reflecting “a pattern of conduct which compromises the scientific integrity of the studies.” Schmidt added, “At the heart of the FDA’s regulatory process is its ability to rely upon the integrity of the basic safety data submitted by the sponsors of regulated products. Our investigation clearly demonstrates that, in the G.D. Searle Co., we have no basis for such reliance now.”

Searle’s conduct was so bad that Schmidt’s task force requested U.S. Attorney Samuel Skinner in Chicago present findings to a grand jury for possible criminal indictment. According to The Washington Post, a grand jury did consider the evidence, but was never asked to vote on an indictment. Skinner withdrew from the Searle case, later accepting a position with Sidley and Austin, the law firm representing Searle.

Donald Rumsfeld served as CEO, president, and chairman of Searle from 1977 until the company was sold to Monsanto in 1985. One of Rumsfeld’s major accomplishments was having aspartame reapproved by the FDA in 1981. Searle submitted an approval petition on Jan. 21, 1981, the day after President Ronald Reagan took office. On July 24, 1981, aspartame was approved as a table-top sweetener and ingredient in dry foods by Reagan appointee FDA Commissioner Arthur Hull Hayes Jr.  Following this, aspartame sales skyrocketed. In 1984, Kidder Peabody estimated sales of aspartame reached $600 million.

Arthur M. Evangelista, a former FDA investigator who was highly critical of the aspartame approval process, referred to the scandal as “mass murder.” Evangelista wrote: “I can tell you, regarding toxicology, histology, and biochemistry, that aspartame is neurotoxic. Its components easily transcend the blood-brain barrier, interfering with normal nerve cell function.”

Dr. Adrian Gross, an FDA toxicologist, told Congress in 1985 that without a doubt, aspartame causes brain tumors and brain cancer and that it violates the DeLaney Amendment, which prohibits any substance be put in food which may cause cancer.  “At least one of those studies has established beyond any reasonable doubt that aspartame is capable of inducing brain tumors in experimental animals and that this . . . is of extremely high significance,” said Gross.

Dr. John Olney, who is credited with the founding of the field of neuroscience called excitotoxicity, tried to bring attention to the dangers of aspartame in the mid-1990s.

Pro-aspartame industry supporters point to many studies that state aspartame is safe. However, Dr. Ralph Walton M.D., chairman of the Center for Behavioral Medicine and professor of clinical psychiatry at Northeastern Ohio Universities College of Medicine, took a sharp look at these studies and found something peculiar.

Walton reviewed 164 studies relating to human safety of aspartame from 1998-2007 and found that 74 had sponsorship ties to the aspartame industry and 90 were funded without industry support.  All 74 of the industry-related studies reported aspartame as safe, with 83 of the 90 non-industry related studies reporting one or more problems with aspartame. Curiously, six of the seven studies showing aspartame to be safe were done by the FDA, causing some to speculate these studies were more along the lines of resumé-builders, given the revolving door between aspartame and drug behemoths.  Thousands of foods and beverages contain aspartame, which are consumed by more than 250 million people worldwide in 100 different countries, according to the NutraSweet company, a spin-off of Monsanto, which was sold to J.W. Childs Equity Partners in 2000.

There has been pushback by health advocates who exposed the problems of aspartame in the socalled alternative media, and some major food and drink producers have tried to find alternatives to satisfy demands of the intense Internet and social media campaigns brought on by those seeking clean foods.

On June 27, 2016, The Wall Street Journal reported consumers demanded aspartame be reintroduced to Diet Pepsi, after PepsiCo spent two years conducting customer surveys, taste tests, and tinkering in the lab. Having initially determined that aspartame should be ditched, PepsiCo made a 180-degree turn, reintroducing its Diet Pepsi with aspartame, after introducing it with sucralose. The Journal reported that “plummeting sale and howls of protest from the diet soda’s devotees” convinced PepsiCo to bring it back with aspartame in September 2016.

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That a major company may have actually tried to offer safer alternatives to aspartame but was met with resistance from consumers reflects the fact that a significant number of Americans are woefully uneducated, or perhaps that they simply may not care about their health.

For the rest of us who desire clean foods, socalled alternative health treatments, and an environment light on toxic and dangerous pesticides, we have very little choice. Government and industry, by and large, make sure we don’t.

James Spounias is the president of Carotec Inc., originally founded by renowned radio show host and alternative health expert Tom Valentine.

8 Comments on Aspartame Making a Deadly Comeback

  1. I have personally researched the effects of aspartame for more than 20 years (personal research -I’m a physician, not a scientist, per se). The scientific evidence against aspartame is so completely overwhelming, that for any shill like this Garst clown, (who could only possibly be a PAID shill in order to be capable of stating such unscientific nonsense) to make such statements would require a level of intellectual dishonesty that most Americans – and other scientists in particular – could never possibly comprehend. Most of us are simply not anywhere near evil enough to do so.

    Fascists like Garst need to be expelled from our society. He needs to be shunned publicly, privately, scientifically, and professionally. Anywhere this clown works, you can be assured is a government-controlled company or agency full of liars and snakes just like him. Ignore and shun them all. It’s the only way we can possibly take back our country.

    Make no mistake: the HONEST research that is out there – 40 YEARS’ worth – makes it overwhelmingly clear that aspartame is a potent neurotoxin that destroys your brain. It is also carcinogenic, according to the REAL science that has not been bought and paid for.

    This is the same industry that made the introduction of stevia as a sweetener impossible for more than 20 years in the U.S., while other countries were using that harmless leaf as a zero-calorie sweetener. So, what was the problem? Simple: Stevia can’t be patented, and it competes with a poison that has been officially sanctioned as GRAS by the FDA. A POISON KNOWN AS ASPERTAME. (Please read the complete story of the intense government shut-down of stevia in a fantastic book called, “The Stevia Story.” That book is amazing and illustrates the conspiracy at the highest levels of government and the ASPERTAME industry that this poisonous prostitute Garst tries and fails to defend).



    Having said all of that, I must also say that, by now, it very difficult to feel sorry for anyone dumb enough to keep drinking that poison after all of the research that has proven how toxic it is. Yet, those products are still very popular. Remember these things, fellow truth-seekers. Remember that when the SHTF, those will be the same ignorant monkeys that will stand in your way when you are running for the exits. Make damn sure you have already saved yourself before worrying about people like that. They are VERY lost.

    Finally, do NOT be impressed by Garst’s credentials. When someone prostitutes their license, their reputation, their credentials, or their authority, their credentials no longer have any meaning or effect, because such credentials are only important when you can trust those credentials. Untrustworthy credentials are no better than diplomas you pull out of a box of cereal. They are totally meaningless, just like this Garst clown: his so-called professional credentials and he himself are 100% totally meaningless. Ignore that shill.

  2. Is there anything more sad then to see an obese person drinking down there “diet pop”. Not only does aspartame cause a myriad of health problems, it increases the user’s appetite for carbs, the very food stuff that is a main cause of fat Americans. Public TV recently did a bio of Walt Disney. There were movies of the Disney workers prior to and after WW2. Out of the many hundreds of workers on film one did not see an overweight person. Lets face it folks the American people are being poisoned under the watchful eye of the government and John E. Garst, Ph.D. Emeritus can crawl back under his emeritus rock.

  3. The problem is, when a large number of people does not care, then the industry produces products that the rest of us are forced to eat because one can hardly find anything packaged and is not spiked with “natural flavors, artificial sugars, or this or that”. We who care have few choices of food and will have to live on fruits and vegetables and cook everything from scratch. This is very hard to do on an ongoing basis. For working people it is too time-consuming to cook when they get home; and older people are too tired to make all home-cooked meals. But the bottom line is we have criminals in our government in high places. They all need to be prosecuted for treason. These criminals exist there because that way they have to do what the controllers want or their crimes and perversions will be exposed.

  4. Even a cursory look at recent studies on reveals that the safety of aspartame is a debatable issue: it is “nonsense” to suggest that the case is closed in favor of aspartame safety.

    A 2014 study concluded: “It is clear that long term aspartame exposure could alter the brain antioxidant status, and can induce apoptotic changes in brain.”

    Another 2014 published report: “On the basis of the evidence of the potential carcinogenic effects of APM (Aspartame) herein reported, a re-evaluation of the current position of international regulatory agencies must be considered an urgent matter of public health.”

    In 2012, negative impacts on memory were documented: “These findings suggest impaired memory performance and increased brain oxidative stress by repeated aspartame administration. The impaired memory performance is likely to involve increased oxidative stress as well as decreased brain glucose availability.”

    Here, researchers suggested aspartame had negative effects on the liver: “In conclusion, the consumption of aspartame leads to histopathological lesions in the liver and alterations of the genetic system in the liver and bone marrow of mother albino rats and their offspring. These toxicological changes were directly proportional to the duration of its administration and improved after its withdrawal.”

    And, in 2015 another involving aspartame and saccharine damage to the liver: “The first and second experimental groups received daily doses equivalent to the acceptable daily intake (ADI) of aspartame (250 mg/Kg BW) and four-fold ADI of aspartame (1000 mg/Kg BW). The third and fourth experimental groups received daily doses equivalent to ADI of saccharin (25 mg/Kg BW) and four-fold ADI of saccharin (100 mg/Kg BW).”
    Conclusion: “in all treated rat groups may indicate a potential risk of liver carcinogenesis, particularly on long-term exposure.”

    As a commentator with a legal background, I think it is admirable that scientists continue the study of aspartame and health. The top-down authoritarian minded “don’t look here” mentality is an anathema to free-thinking people, especially in light of the rancid history of aspartame and politics in the United States.

  5. Most everything in this argument is old, stale and has been invalidated by later science. The fact is aspartame is perfectly safe used as directed and that any evidence to the contrary is decades old and invalid.

    Anyone who shows ANY adverse response to aspartame (which other double-blinded studies recently demonstrated not even to exist, .) is either one involving a frank allergy to aspartame or its three degradation components (as occurs with milk or peanut allergies) or most likely reflects a personal intrinsic problem in the pathway for methanol metabolism. Such issues are not uncommon, either. Tephly and coworkers have shown (even before aspartame existed) that methanol metabolism is completely dependent upon adequacy of the vitamin folic acid, . Ignorance of this fact explains most false reporting on aspartame.

    Today correlates of his principle have shown adequacy of vitamin B12 and/or enzyme polymorphisms (personal differences) within B12 or folate metabolism can be directly responsible for most such problems. Migraine headaches are most widely experienced problem associated with aspartame. And migraine headaches are directly associated with such issues, . This further confirms the likelihood that the basic science of Tephly and his coworkers were right on target, although these correlates were unknown to them.

    AminoSweet is even more potent a sweetener, which lowers the amounts of methanol intake and make them even safer than aspartame.

    [I am a retired academic with no financial connection to aspartame or the aspartame industry, but solely to the truth. And if this is not the truth, ask why aspartame is deemed safe by all the relevant regulatory authorities worldwide?]

    John E. Garst, Ph.D. Emeritus Professor (Medicinal Chemistry, Pharmacology, Toxicology, and Nutrition)

  6. Beware, I made a post describing why this is nonsense, but the website reviewers refuse to post the facts.

    John E. Garst, Ph.D. Emeritus Professor (Medicinal Chemistry, Pharmacology, Toxicology, and Nutrition)

  7. I have preached the ASPERTAME & fluoride POISON, for years to family and friends, the response is always the same” I’m gonna die of something, foolish is as foolish does

  8. I don’t think there is much difference between consumers being uneducated or not caring about their health. It is the same. They really just don’t care. Most don’t care about their health until it is too late. It is their choice. They don’t take an interest and do the research of how to maintain this miraculous body that we possess. I think things are evolving slowly in that more people are taking responsibility for their health as to the wave of health conscious products becoming more available in mainstream markets. But most of the information about these products does not come from the mainstream media or mainstream medical establishment, both of which are extremely bad for your health.

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