Aspartame Dangers – Part 3

Part 3 of Aspartame Dangers deals with what aspartame actually does to your body.  If you want to know a brief history of this chemical and a time line, please see Part 1 and Part 2.  I apologise in advance if some of this post is a bit heavy going but it is a vast subject and I’ve just tried to cover the salient points.  But first…

baby's foodA Statement from Dr Russell Blaylock MD – Neurosurgeon

My review of the first Ramazzini Study concluded that the study was one of the best designed, comprehensive and conclusive studies done to date on the multipotent carcinogenic potential of aspartame.

This second study is even more conclusive, in that it shows a dose dependent statistically significant increase in lymphomas/leukemia in both male and female rats exposed to aspartame. These two cancers are the fastest growing cancers in people under age 30.

Also, of major concern is their finding of statistically significant increases in breast cancer in animals exposed to aspartame. With newer studies clearly indicating that toxic exposures during fetal development can dramatically increase the cancer risk of the offspring, this study takes on a very important meaning to all pregnant women consuming aspartame products. Likewise, small children are at considerable risk of the later development of these highly fatal cancers.

It should be appreciated that the doses used in these study [sic] fall within the range of doses seen in everyday users of aspartame. This study, along with the first study, should convince any reasonable scientific mind, as well as the public at large, that this product should be removed from the market.

Russell L. Blaylock, M.D.

What is aspartame

aspartame diagramAspartame is made up of three components, aspartic acid, phenylalanine and methanol or wood alcohol.  Those who push this lethal adulterant say that two of the components are natural and harmless because they are amino acids.  This aspartame molecule has the three components attached together, the aspartic acid and phenylalanine as a dipeptide and the methanol attached to the phenylalanine part of the molecule. (A peptide is a short chain of amino acids linked together). For those interested, see the diagram showing the makeup of aspartame. The sweetness of aspartame is the result of methyl alcohol that is bonded to the amino acid phenylalanine.  If that bond is broken, the sweetness will be lost.

Aspartic Acid

Aspartic acid is one of the twenty amino acids found in the human body.  Along with glutamic acid and in their free form ie. when not bound to a protein, they can raise the blood plasma levels of aspartate and glutamate.  Aspartate and glutamate act as neurotransmitters in the brain which allows transmission of signals from neuron to neuron.  When these neurotransmitters are significantly raised, it triggers the calcium channels to open allowing excess calcium into the cells.  If the calcium channel stays open, the cell will die. This is why these two amino acids are called excitotoxins as they stimulate the neural cells to death.  Glutamic acid is associated with ‘monosodium glutamate’ (MSG) a food additive used to enhance taste and which needs to be avoided!

Compromising the BBB

During childhood the blood brain barrier (BBB) which is there to protect the brain from toxins and excess aspartate and glutamate, is not developed fully.  It therefore cannot protect all the areas of the brain at this time.  The BBB can also be compromised by disease conditions and this can allow excretion of aspartate and glutamate into the brain.

Excess amino acids

When isolated these amino acids are excitotoxins that can cause migraines, seizures, mental problems and according to research, cancer.

The excess of these excitotoxins will slowly destroy neurons and this will not be evident until a good portion of the neurons in any area of the brain are killed.  This means the brain is being damaged with no symptoms showing.  Not until more than 75% of the neurons have been killed will symptoms start to arise.  Many conditions can be attributed to long term exposure of excitotoxins such as aspartate and glutamate and these include:

  • Alzheimer’s Disease
  • Dementia
  • Epilepsy
  • Multiple Sclerosis (MS)
  • Parkinson’s Disease
  • Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), also known as Lou Gehrig’s disease and motor neurone disease (MND)
  • Neuroendocrine disorders
  • Brain lesions (dark or light spots not like normal brain tissue)
  • Hypoglycaemia

Dr BlaylockAccording to Dr Russell Blaylock, a board-certified neurosurgeon and author of Excitotoxins: The Taste that Kills“Excitotoxins are usually amino acids, such as glutamate and aspartate. These special amino acids cause particular brain cells to become excessively excited, to the point they will quickly die. Excitotoxins can also cause a loss of brain synapses and connecting fibers. Food-borne excitotoxins include such additives as MSG, aspartame, hydrolyzed protein and soy protein extract.”

What about phenylalanine?

Around 1 baby out of 10,000 will be born in the UK with an inherited disorder known as Phenylketonuria (PKU).  People with this condition are unable to break down the amino acid phenylalanine.  This then builds up in the brain and can cause brain damage.

PKU testPKU test

At around 5 days old babies are offered a test to check if they have PKU as well as some other conditions.  This is done by taking a few drops of blood from the heel of the baby.

If PKU is diagnosed early then the child can be treated and will invariably lead a normal healthy life.  If not diagnosed PKU can damage the nervous system and the brain leading to learning difficulties.  These problems can include epilepsy, tremours, eczema and behavioural problems.

Those with PKU should avoid aspartamejello warning

Suffice to say, those with this condition should avoid certain foods and any excess phenylanaline such as that containing aspartame in diet foods and drinks.  If a product has aspartame in it, there should be a warning on that product.

Methyl alcohol or Methanol (wood alcohol)

Many researchers think that the methanol contained within aspartame is one of the most dangerous molecules of this deadly threesome.  One of those experts has been studying aspartame for most of his professional career, especially with respect to MS (multiple sclerosis).

Prof MonteProf. Woodrow Monte

Woodrow C. Monte, Professor Emeritus of Food Science and Nutrition from Arizona State University has decades of experience in the subject of food sciences and nutrition and as a researcher.  He is commited to food safety and has been studying the link between artificial sweeteners and the illnesses such as Alzheimer’s, Multiple Sclerosis, Cancer, Autism and Birth Defects.  Professor Monte is not affiliated to any drug companies, the FDA or any other organisation.   He just wants to help those suffering from the effects of all the diseases that aspartame triggers and assimilate the information and the reasons why this toxin is so dangerous.

Prof. Monte, who also authored the book  “While Science Sleeps: A Sweetener Kills”, is well-known as a world expert on the toxicities of methanol as it relates to aspartame, having studied it for the last three decades.

MethanolMethanol studies on animals

Methanol is the smallest molecule of alcohol that there is, it has just one carbon.  There have been numerous studies way back, using animals to test the safety of methanol.  Animals such as dogs, rabbits, ruminants, mice¹, primates², rats³, have all been tested.  When testing animals to see how dangerous methanol is to them, ethanol is much more toxic to all animals than methanol is.  In fact ethanol is more toxic by a factor of around 30% depending on the animal.

On the strength of these studies, back in the early 1900s, refined methanol was used to make vanilla extract and other extracts that would normally have ethanol as their base.  Methanol was much cheaper than ethanol and it made stuff taste good and what’s more, there was no tax on it; ethanol was taxed even in those days.  Other products were being produced such as cough syrups and medicines that were more palatable because of the methanol.

skull CrossbonesMethanol – so dangerous

It wasn’t long before doctors and carers started seeing adverse affects.  People were going blind, people were dying.   Doctors were writing articles giving details of the death and blindness and pleading with the food and drug industry to do something about it.  They knew it was the methanol. As little as 10ml of pure methanol can destroy the optic nerve, rendering drinkers blind.  This is still happening now in this modern age, so beware.

“Here is the story: there is a major biochemical problem here,” Prof. Monte says. “Methyl alcohol is known now, and has been known since 1940, to be metabolized differently by humans from every other animal.”

peroxisomesPeroxisomes?

No cells in the human body can metabolize methanol.  Whereas in the animal body, every cell can metabolize methanol.  Animals have peroxisomes within their cells as do humans, every cell having around 200 of these tiny structures.  When methanol enters the peroxisome of an animal, catalase within it converts it to formaldehyde and then other chemicals within that peroxisome will change the formaldehyde to formic acid, rendering it harmless.  With humans, although we have the peroxisomes, for some reason, which has supposedly happened in our evolution, our peroxisomes can’t handle the methanol, the same as animal peroxisomes can.

Misguided research

This makes the study of animals in relation to humans hit and miss with regards to the methanol part of the aspartame molecule.  This is why methanol was used way back in the early 1900s because animal studies pointed to methanol being safe.  As it turned out, it was deadly to humans.  It is strange that humans can tolerate ethanol better than animals and animals can tolerate methanol better than humans.

Enter the enzyme ‘alcohol dehydrogenase’ (ADH)

Parts of our body contains an enzyme known as ‘alcohol dehydrogenase’ (ADH).  Prof. Monte has found 11 areas with the body where this enzyme is found.  It is the only enzyme able to convert methanol into formaldehyde.  ADH can be found in the lining of the vessels, especially in the brain and other sensitive areas like the female breast tissue, the kidneys, the liver, the unborn child and the optic nerves.  If methanol comes across ADH and is converted into formaldehyde, then the ensuing damage can be catastrophic.  As for the unborn child, the fetus develops ADH, especially in the brain. Methanol coming into contact with ADH in the brain of a fetus could have dire consequences.

DNA damage
dna ladder
DNA ladder

DNA is found within our cells.  If ADH and methanol meets with DNA, the  resulting formaldehyde conversion can mess with the DNA, as Prof. Monte explains “when you produce this formaldehyde, you’re producing a methylating monster.  We’ve only recently been able to understand how important methylation is to cancer and to life in general.”  He goes on “methylation – when you methylate a DNA, it turns off that DNA.  It keeps it from producing that protein.”  As you can imagine, because the ADH is free floating as is the methanol that gets into the cell, there is no telling where and when, within that cell, the ADH may come across the methanol and convert it to formaldehyde.

Aspartame does NOT aid dieting

Apart from the dangers shown by many studies and the problems caused by each of aspartame’s components, using aspartame as a dietary aid is a farce.  This neurotoxin actually encourages weight gain.  The two amino acids phenylalanine and aspartic acid, stimulate insulin production.  This is turn causes spikes in insulin which takes all the glucose from the blood, stores it as fat and leaves the body ravenous.  Thus this encourages consumption of more food and the process is repeated; a vicious circle.

Apart from this, the neurotransmitter seratonin which signals a full stomach, is inhibited causing even more to be eaten. This is an ironic state of affairs with the public thinking they’re doing the healthy alternative, when in fact they are exacerbating weight gain and unhealthy weight gain to boot as well as playing Russian roulette with their health.

When ethenol meets methanol

Prof. Monte explains – “there is always ethanol in the hepatic portal vein during the day or after people eat, because there is fermentation going on in the gut.  Scientists have shown that most people, not all the time, but most people have a little bit of ethanol in their bloodstream. If that’s the case then the small amount of methanol that comes from aspartame or whatever will not be metabolized in the liver, because there is just that little bit of ethanol.  So what happens is – this is not good – it gets through the liver completely, the low levels of methanol, and it gets into the circulatory system.”

No ethanol means methanol can be converted 

Often in the early hours, when fermentation ceases and ethanol is close to zero, the circulating methanol can come across the only enzyme that can convert it, alcohol dehydrogenase’ (ADH) and then formaldehyde can be produced.  Prof. Monte hypothesizes that those that advocate that a small alcoholic drink every day could be good for you, may be onto something!

Emergency treatment for methanol poisoning

If someone was poisoned by methanol, the quick treatment would be giving ethanol because ethanol acts as a competitive inhibitor by binding and saturating alcohol hydrogenase enzymes in the liver.  This blocks the binding of methanol so methanol is excreted by the kidneys without being converted to formaldehyde.  This is what happened on the ‘Supervet’ program when a cat came in poisoned.

What about fruit and veggies?

Those that advocate that methanol is safe, speak of fresh fruit and vegetables that contain minute amounts of methanol.  They forget to add though, that pectin within the fruit and veggie firmly binds to methanol, allowing it to be excreted because humans do not have enzymes that will break this pectin/methanol bond.  That’s why fruit and veggie is harmless to us UNLESS it is spoilt or going off because that is when the pectin can disassociate from the methanol.

75% of adverse reactions is from aspartame

Aspartame accounts for over 75% of adverse reactions, which include seizures and death, reported to the FDA regarding food additives on the market today.  The problem with this aspartame concoction is, if someone succumbs to certain illnesses such as Alzeimer’s, dementia, Parkinsons, breast cancer, brain tumours, autism, epilepsy, atherosclerosis etc., who’s to know how they contracted these diseases.  Even if aspartame is suspected, can it be proven?

The evidence is overwhelming

All I can say to you is this.   Look at the evidence and the research.  If you’ve read the previous two parts of this post, the shananigans and deception of Searle and Rumsfeld is undeniable and breathtaking.  Why do they need to be so deceitful if they believe in their product?  We know they are trying to hide unfavourable results from their numerous studies.

You know now that there is a high possibility that this stuff is toxic so you know that there is also a possibility that you or your loved ones can contract any of the diseases associated with consuming aspartame.  There is so much negative research and studies on this chemical concoction.   If you leave it alone, at least that’s one area where you won’t fall ill because of this likely contaminant.  Take control, make sure you and your family do not succumb to aspartame’s side effects.

Does your pilot drink diet coke or chew gum?

My next article deals with the problems pilots have whilst in flight.  Are they having seizures, migraines, hypoxia and brain fog because of their consumption of diet products like diet coke and chewing gum?

  1. Alzheimer’s disease and methanol toxicity (part 1): chronic methanol feeding led to memory impairments and tau hyperphosphorylation in mice. J Alzheimers Dis. 2014;41(4):1117-29. doi: 10.3233/JAD-131529.
  2. Ches PowerAlzheimer’s disease and methanol toxicity (part 2): lessons from four rhesus macaques (Macaca mulatta) chronically fed methanol.  J Alzheimers Dis. 2014;41(4):1131-47. doi: 10.3233/JAD-131532.
  3. Formaldehyde derived from dietary aspartame binds to tissue components in vivo.
    Trocho C. et al. Life Sci. 1998;63(5):337-49.
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Aspartame Dangers - Part 3
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Aspartame Dangers - Part 3
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Part 3 of Aspartame Dangers deals with what aspartame actually does to your body...
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10 thoughts on “Aspartame Dangers – Part 3

  1. I am so pleased you’re now looking out for aspartame in your food Daniel. It is just not worth the risk for you and your family to ingest this chemical concoction. I will be publishing an article tomorrow about airline pilots and seizures in the cockpit The risks to them and their passengers is just not worth taking. Pilots chew a lot of gum and drink much diet soda. To my knowledge all gum sold in the US has aspartame in it. Thanks for your input. Ches

  2. Thanks for your comment and input Alejandra. Now you have the information, please spread the word about aspartame. If enough people stop using it and explaining its side effects, perhaps something will be done to take it off the market. I am so pleased you don’t drink or eat diet products any more, you will surely be healthier with your decision. Plain water is the best and a little bit of lemon a nice combination. Good health to you and yours. Ches

  3. Thank you so much for writing this article! I never knew about this substance until I read this. I will start checking the ingredients of the food my family consumes. Luckily, we don’t drink diet beverages or eat chewing gums. Thank you for making this website. You have done a great job!

  4. Hi Chess,
    Thanks so much for writing this great information about Aspartame danger.
    Everyone who is against it, they just say it’s bad for health, but they don’t explain more about it.
    I’m glad I found you and your website, now I well informed on why I should not to have it.
    I used to have diet soda, I’m getting used to plain water now and sometimes just with some lemon zest.
    I will read more on your site now.
    Thanks for sharing great information!
    Alejandra.

  5. Hi Berenice and thanks for your input. You’re right of course, aspartame should be banned and should never have come on the market in the first place, but that’s politics for you! The money that’s made from this concoction is absolutely staggering and the company that manufacturers and sells it will not give it up easily. The FDA know how dangerous it is but still will not take it off the market, they are in too deep. It is a fiasco and dangerous to the public health to boot. Slowly, the public is realising how bad this chemical threesome is for them and the writing is on the wall for aspartame! Problem is, many have and are suffering because of aspartame’s life threatening side effects.

  6. I’m glad that you have explained the side effects of aspartame and how dangerous it’s to our health. Me personally bought a lot of products containing aspartame before I new about the side effects. For so many people these products mislead them thinking that they won’t gain weight. The companies that sell these foods are making money out of the ignorance of a lot of people that are trying to eat less calories not knowing that they won’t loose any weight consuming them but get cancer cells or worse. Fake sugar only makes people crave more sweets and trying to mimic the sugar by adding aspartame they consume more unhealthy foods. Thanks for the post!

  7. Thanks Marley for your kind and positive comments. I think chemistry should be a compulsory subject for all youngsters to learn. After all, it is fundamental to everything living and all we have in our world is made of the chemical elements. Your Grandad was wise to warn you of aspartame and it has been proven to cause cancer and brain tumours apart from all the other problems such as MD, Parkinson’s and seizures.

    My next post discusses airline pilots and their copious use of aspartame laced products whilst flying.

    Good health to you and yours, Ches

  8. Nice, another great part to this series – my granddad was a Chemist, and a Physicist, and he always taught me growing up teh dangers of certain chemical in food and drink, to avoid, and Aspartame was always one he would strongly avoid as he said it causes Cancer and a variety of serious health issues that you point out in this post.

    If he was still alive i can safely say he would be a huge fan of this Aspartame dangers series, and he would be a subscriber to your website without question 🙂 and i personally find all of your posts to be really informative and so helpful to break down serious provable conspiracies in the health/food industries in a coherent way – great design of your post too.

    Keep up all the great work Ches!

  9. Hi Liz, Aspartame is in over 6,000 foods including diet sodas, milk products, yoghurts, cereals and most diet products. The reason it’s in our foods is financial gain because this chemical sweetener nets the manufacturer billions of dollars a year and profit is more important to them than the health of the general public. The FDA have proof from independent researchers that aspartame has serious side effects but still they will not withdraw this concoction. All you can do is make sure you and your family don’t consume it and as you say ‘spread the word’!

  10. Wow this information is incredible! The first time I have heard of aspartame is when they refer to sodas and them when people discovered that it contributed to the growth of cancer cells, they decided to remove it. But, my question is why place a substance that is so detrimental to our health into our foods when its so easy to take it out? It’d crazy how it is being marketed as a “natural” sweetener. The FDA definitions for things are ridiculous. Thanks for the read. Spread the word!

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