Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Aspartame - The Killer In Your Fridge?

The Sweet "Poison"

We wrote about aspartame last year.

Now, a good friend has forwarded us a new version of the Nancy Markle letter that includes a lengthy preamble of a "miracle cure" that brought a loved one back from the brink of death.

He strongly advised that we forward this serious health message to our friends and relatives. But we decided to do a little checking first.

Wah! We found many Web sites that discuss the possible side effects of aspartame and try to link it, through mostly anecdotal evidence, to Alzheimer's, birth defects, brain cancer, diabetes, Gulf War syndrome, lupus, multiple sclerosis and seizures. Straight away, the long list warrants skepticism. Just as no single chemical cures everything, none causes everything.

So we went to a reliable health site, the US National Library of Medicine, to search for the latest peer-reviewed scientific papers on aspartame.

We found “Aspartame—facts and fiction” by Bernadene Magnuson and published in the March 19, 2010 issue of the New Zealand Medical Journal. A summary obtained from the website of the New Zealand Medical Association is reproduced below.

Dr Magnusson has declared that her presentation was funded by Coca-Cola Oceania. However, she has no financial interests in any of the companies that produce or use aspartame or any other high intensity sweetener.

If you are skeptical about this toxicologist, which is quite understandable, you can look up these other authoritative sites recommended by the New Zealand Food Safety Authority:

European Food Safety Authority

Food Standards Australia New Zealand (FSANZ) – Aspartame fact sheet

Health Canada

New Zealand Food Safety Authority (NZFSA), Aspartame – what is it and why is it used in our food?

New Zealand Food Safety Authority (NZFSA) submission to the Health Select Committee 2007

UK Food Standards Agency

US Food and Drug Administration (USFDA)

As always, if you have questions about the safety of the foods and other substances you ingest, your best source for answers are health professionals. If you are concerned about negative effects from aspartame or other artificial sweeteners, consult your doctor, pharmacist or a registered dietitian. Recommended this article to your friends and relatives and break this outdated and questionable chain!

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