Aspartame has been on the debate block for years as time and time again independent research reveals dangers associated with aspartame consumption, while industry funded research reveals no dangers. In a new study observing over 60,000 women, diet drinks containing aspartame consumed at 2 or more per day increased the risk of heart related illness by 50%. This is added to the list of studies that have shown aspartame causes fast paced kidney decline, brain and neurological damage, and is linked to increased rates of leukaemia and lymphoma and more.
The interesting part is, aspartame was once illegal. It was banned twice by the FDA because public cases and research showed a serious link between aspartame and serious health effects including brain related tumors. The aspartame legalization fiasco of the 1960′s and 70′s triggered the first ever criminal investigation into a food and drug manufacturer for shoddy testing practices. It didn’t become legal again until some corrupt political work had to be done to overturn the boards initial decision to keep it banned. More about that here.
The study completed by The University of Iowa confirms that:
“…[C]ompared to women who never or only rarely consume diet drinks, those who consume two or more a day are 30 percent more likely to have a cardiovascular event [heart attack or stroke] and 50 percent more likely to die from related disease.
‘This is one of the largest studies on this topic, and our findings are consistent with some previous data, especially those linking diet drinks to the metabolic syndrome,’ says Dr. Ankur Vyas… the lead investigator of the study.
…The association persisted even after researchers adjusted the data to account for demographic characteristics and other cardiovascular risk factors, including body mass index, smoking, hormone therapy use, physical activity, energy intake, salt intake, diabetes, hypertension, high cholesterol and sugar-sweetened beverage intake.
On average, women who consumed two or more diet drinks a day were younger, more likely to be smokers, and had a higher prevalence of diabetes, high blood pressure, and higher body mass index.”
“[Like diabetics], they become hyperglycemic. Their blood sugars go up higher than they should. They also make less of a heart-protective protein. If drinking diet soda interferes with this system, then over the long term you’re taking something away that protects your cardiovascular health, and that could be what’s contributing to these effects.”
Why are we drinking aspartame in the first place? Many of us choose diet beverages because we are looking to keep weight off or lose weight. The fact is, diet beverages actually promote weight gain. This was illustrated by two studies that found an increase in hunger after consuming artificial sweeteners.
As found in the studies, women experienced the greatest increase in hunger after chewing gum that contained 0.3 percent aspartame while men were the hungriest after chewing on gum containing 0.5 percent aspartame. The authors stated:
“The highest aspartame concentrations had a time-dependent, biphasic effect on appetite, producing a transient decrease followed by a sustained increase in hunger ratings. Thus, the concentration of the sweetener, the sex of the subject, and the time after chewing, were all important determinants of whether ‘sweetness’ increased hunger.”
This should be just about it for aspartame and the industry knows it. Regardless of the safety manipulation that has gone on for years, independent research has shown time and time again that aspartame is too dangerous for human consumption. In fact, there are about 166 studies that had relevance for questioning human safety when it came to aspartame. 74 of these studies had Nutrasweet industry related funding and 92 were independently funded. Of the industry funded studies, one hundred percent of them found aspartame to be safe. But in the independent studies, 92% of them found aspartame to not be safe for human consumption. Of the 8% (7 of 92 studies) that found it was safe, 6 of them were funded by the FDA who has been found to be a corrupt organization at its core.
As the industry says goodbye to one of its chemicals, they are becoming sneaky with how they bring about new ones. For example, PepsiCo has already come out with a new sweetener called Sweetmyx (S617). The additive was made by Senomyx—a biotech company that specializes in novel flavor modifiers and flavor enhancing food additives—was recently given Generally Recognized as Safe (GRAS) status. This allows PepsiCO and others to utilize Sweetmyx for commercial use. Also since Sweetmyx is considered a flavor additive, this can slip beneath the radar as it will fall under the label “artificial flavors.” This means it does not have to go through any approval proceces for FDA safety, even though with the FDA’s track record that probably wouldn’t matter too much.
If that wasn’t enough, aspartame is getting a bit of a makeover as it can now be used under the name Aminosweet. They can now sell this product as a natural amino acid derivative. As you can see by their new website, they try to make it look healthy and safe as well. Scary stuff.