Aspartame, a sweetener safe or not?

Aspartame is a widely used, but also much discussed artificial sweetener. Many have namely wonder if our body there can withstand.

High time to take to find out whether aspartame is a safe sweetener. Let’s first look at what exactly is aspartame.

What is aspartame?

Aspartame is an artificial sweetener which is also sometimes referred to as E951. Artificial means that it is a chemical that does not occur in nature but is made in a factory.

Aspartame came in 1981 for the first time on the market under the name Nutra Sweet and since it is one of the most widely used sweeteners in foods.

That’s because aspartame taste buds on the tongue in the same way as sugar stimulates. But unlike aspartame sugar contains no calories. Hence aspartame is widely used in diet products.

Moreover, the sweetener 150 to 200 times stronger than sugar. You have the food manufacturer so very few of need and it is very cheap to make. That’s why aspartame now thousands foods such as (sugar-free) soft drinks, soft drinks, sweets and chewing gum.

The composition of aspartame

In order to evaluate whether aspartame is safe, we need to look at the elements of which aspartame is made.

The sweetener is made up of three components:

  • aspartic
  • phenylalanine
  • methanol

We begin with aspartic acid and phenylalanine. These are two amino acids that occur in natural foods. These amino acids are for example in protein foods like meat, fish and eggs.

For this reason, it is logical to assume that aspartame is a safe substance. But I believe that this assumption is incorrect.

That’s because natural food but very little is aspartic acid and phenylalanine. Poor 5% of the amino acids profile (there are several kinds of amino acids) consists of aspartic acid and phenylalanine. Moreover, these fabrics are not made in a factory and are naturally accompanied by many other natural nutrients.

In the natural feeding, therefore, a natural composition of all types of substances, including aspartic acid and phenylalanine. And in this form and proportions can process our body well.

The composition of aspartame is much simpler. The profile of aspartame consists of 50% to 40% phenylalanine and aspartic acid. In aspartame, these amino acids are not natural but synthetic. Moreover, they are not accompanied by other natural amino acids and nutrients. This unnatural fabrics in an unnatural composition and ratios can be much harder to break down our body. And that has implications for our health.

The remaining 10%, incidentally, is composed of methanol. This is a toxic, alcohol-like substance also is in alcohol and cigarette smoke.

Health risks of aspartame

We now know that Aspartame is a chemical that can deplete the body difficult.

It is therefore not surprising that there have been since the coming of aspartame thousands of reports on the market of physical symptoms. That emerged after consuming foods containing this sweetener.

These were (and are) complaints:

  • Headache
  • Migraine
  • Dizziness
  • Irritable
  • anxiety Attacks
  • Sleeping Statelessness
  • See Problems
  • Indigestion
  • flurry
  • allergic reactions

These short-term effects have also emerged in all kinds of investigations [1,2,3,4,5,6].

There are also many studies done on the long term effects of aspartame. It came some alarming health risks that I would like to explain some of it.

Aspartame affects the central nervous system

We have a defense mechanism that protects brains against harmful substances. This mechanism is called the blood-brain barrier. But methanol, and phenylalanine are not restrained by the barrier. As a result, these two fabrics in different places in the brains where they have no business.

The European Journal of Clinical Nutrition in 2008, devoted a lengthy article to investigate the harmful effects of aspartame on the central nervous system. The results of this study are disturbing [1].

One of the findings is that aspartame affects cell walls and eventually destroys. This gives aspartame can still occur easier access to the brains eventually causing brain damage.

Overloading of nerve cells

Nerve cells (including brain cells) communicate with each other. They do this by gently signal to send to each other.

There are substances that cause nerve cells to send more beeps than necessary. Such a substance called excitotoxin and aspartame is such a substance.

When nerve cells become overloaded can they eventually die. This can lead to disorders such as epilepsy, ADHD and Parkinson’s disease [7].

Increased risk of cardiovascular disease

A large-scale American study that lasted less than 10 years has established a link between aspartame and heart disease. The researchers concluded that the increased risk for heart disease by more than 30% if you drink 2 glasses every day aspartame sodas. [8]

Aspartame is carcinogenic

Before you read about the relationship between aspartame and the development of cancer, I want to bring something to the attention. That is that many studies have been accompanied by mice and rats.

I can respond quite aware that the human body at different toxins. But I also think that studies conducted on mice and rats provide important information on the effects of aspartame on our body.

There a lot of research has been done on the carcinogenic property of aspartame [9]. There are two studies that I want to highlight.

The first study was completed in 2005. This study found that the risk of lymphoma and leukemia by up to 62% increased in a group of rats that received daily aspartame [10].

A similar study conducted in 2010 on mice showed that methanol caused liver and lung cancer in male mice. These mice were already exposed in the womb to aspartame [11].

Aspartame increases the risk of diabetes

The intake of fast carbohydrates such as sugar makes the blood sugar to rise rapidly. To make the blood sugar level decrease our bodies insulin.

The added sugars in our diet provide a fairly high pressure on the insulin system. Moreover, we all know that sugar is not healthy for you.

Aspartame is said to have no effect on the insulin system. Therefore, it therefore could not give rise to insulin-intolerance, which is the pre-stage of diabetes is type 2.

However, according to a study from 2014 aspartame weldegelijk affect the sugar metabolism, and insulin-system [6].

Food Industry: aspartame is safe

As you can see there are plenty of scientifically sound signals that aspartame is not suitable for consumption.

Nevertheless, there are two groups emerged: proponents and opponents of aspartame.

Among the opponents of aspartame are people who have symptoms of aspartame, critical consumers and scientists showing that aspartame is not suitable for consumption.

It strikes me that the other group, the supporters, mostly consisting of parties involved in any way in the food industry. And these parties are obviously not benefit from a ban aspartame because it’s already in thousands of products.

Conclusion: avoid aspartame

The parties say that aspartame is not poisonous, support often arguing that the dosage in our diet is very low. So there is so little aspartame in food that our body will not notice [12,13].

The Nutrition Center emphasized that by saying that aspartame is safe as long as you continue every day under the recommended daily intake (ADI) of 40 milligrams per kilogram of body weight. This amount is determined by the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA).

Aspartame would therefore be safe, as long as you do not ingest too much. I do not agree and I will explain why.

I believe that your food to which a toxic chemical is added should not consume. Even if the amount is very small.

We have now looked at some studies that indicate that there really are health risks. Many of these studies are indeed carried out on mice and rats. But if the outcome is so disturbing, I can only conclude that aspartame is not suitable for human consumption.

It may sound clichĂ©, but where there’s smoke, there’s fire. And your health you want to take any chances, right?

Furthermore, aspartame in many foods used and the number is still increasing. The label need only state that use is made of artificial sweeteners. Therefore it is very difficult to track how much aspartame you’re actually ingest.

So no risk and avoid all products that artificial sugars are added.

Aspartame prevents you from losing weight

Finally, I would still appoint one thing. And that is to keep the need for sugar in position with aspartame (and other artificial sweeteners). Here’s why.

Foods that aspartame is in, often have little to no nutritional value. Your body can do anything with it and you will therefore also not satisfied feeling.

What happens next is that you draw (for sweets) is not satisfied. Indeed, that is properly fueled. Your body namely not get what it wants and keep trying to get that indeed.

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