aspartame and sucralose

The Harmful Effects of Aspartame and Sucralose

by Kelley Herring on November 29, 2011

Are you using aspartame and sucralose in your baking and cooking?

The health and scientific communities have known for a long time that the artificial sweetener, aspartame (marketed as Nutra-Sweet or Equal) is a poison to the human body.

For more than 16 years, the Food and Drug Administration refused to approve aspartame for use as a food additive. The reason was very clear. Many of the studies performed on this chemical (and there have been hundreds) showed conclusively that it can cause harm.

The FDA’s own toxicologist, Dr. Adrian Gross, told Congress “without a shadow of a doubt, aspartame can cause brain tumors and brain cancer…”

Neurosurgeon Dr. Russell Blaylock describes the “excitotoxic” properties of aspartame this way:

[it] literally stimulates neurons to death, causing brain damage of varying degrees.

Aspartame: FDA Approved Doesn’t Mean It’s Safe

So, why did the FDA finally approve such a questionable product after all those years?

It certainly wasn’t the “safety” data. It was approved due to political pressure alone. Donald Rumsfeld became CEO of the company and used his considerable political connections to overhaul the FDA and strong arm the organization into approving this dangerous chemical.

The evidence is clear and widely available. And most people who care anything about their health avoid this toxic ingredient.

But there is another toxic sweetener on the scene, one that has been widely embraced, even among many so-called health and nutrition “experts”.

Is Sucralose a Healthy Alternative to Aspartame?

I’m talking about the chemical sucralose – marketed as Splenda. Sucralose didn’t weather the same FDA scrutiny that aspartame did. The FDA is a far more corporate-compliant organization these days. In fact, sucralose was approved very quickly, on the grounds of very few studies (none of which were long term).

Sucralose is now added to thousands of products, including virtually every “low-carb” drink, snack, food bar or recipe, many of which are manufactured by nutritionally-oriented companies and often recommended by clueless health gurus ( Yo-yo dieter Oprah Winfrey’s weight loss “expert” Bob Greene comes to mind, along with South Beach Diet founder Dr. Agatston… although there are many more).

So what do we know about this artificial sweetener which was originally stumbled upon when researchers were trying to produce an insecticide?

There are no long term studies that prove the safety of sucralose, but there are many animal studies that show cause for great concern. These studies have shown that sucralose can:

  • Cause the thymus to shrink by as much as 40% (the thymus is your immune powerhouse – it produces T cells)
  • Cause enlargement of the liver and kidneys
  • Reduce growth rate as much as 20%
  • Cause enlargement of the large bowel area
  • Reduce the amount of good bacteria in the intestines by 50%
  • Increase the pH level in the intestines (a risk factor for colon cancer)
  • Contribute to weight gain
  • Cause aborted pregnancy or low fetal body weight
  • Reduce red blood cell count

And what effect does it have on diabetics… the population that this poison is often recommended for?

Researchers found that diabetic patients using sucralose showed a statistically significant increase in glycosylated hemoglobin, a marker that is used to assess glycemic control in diabetic patients.

According to the FDA,

increases in glycosolation in hemoglobin imply lessening of control of diabetes.

So this endocrine disrupting chemical contributes to weight gain, worsens diabetes, has no long-term safety data and could cause a host of very serious side-effects. Yet it is marketed and recommended by many within the “health” community.

You should not buy or consume ANY product that contain aspartame,  sucralose – or any other artificial sweeteners. And you should cast a very wary eye toward ANY publications, doctors or fitness professionals who recommend products or recipes with these ingredients.

Either they are too lazy to have done the research, too ignorant to understand the implications, too clueless to know that there are healthy alternatives, or they do not give a darn about your health.

Take your pick. But in any case, that is not the kind of person or corporation to whom you want to give your money or your support.

You can be sure that Healing Gourmet will NEVER recommend artificial sweeteners.

Learn about the safe, natural, low glycemic alternatives you can use to make decadent, delicious healthy gluten free desserts.

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About The Author

Kelley Herring, founder of Healing Gourmet, is a natural nutrition enthusiast with a background in biochemistry. Her passion is educating on how foods promote health and protect against disease and creating simple and delicious recipes for vibrant health and enjoyment.

Kelley Herring – who has written posts on Healing Gourmet.

AMA 1985. "Aspartame: Review of Safety Issues," Journal of the American Medical Association, Volume 254, No. 3, page 400-402. Baker, R.N., A.L. Alenty, J.F. Zack, 1969. "Simultaneous Determination of Lower Alcohols, Acetone and Acetaldehyde in Blood by Gass Chromatography," Journal of Chromatographic Science, Volum 7, pages 312-314, 1969. Baumann, K., J. Angerer, 1979. "Occupational Chronic Exposure to Organic Solvents. VI. Formic Acid Concentration in Blood and Urine as an Indicator of Methanol Exposure," International Archives of Occupational and Environmental Health, Volume 42, page 241. Blaylock, Russell L., 1994. "Excitotoxins: The Taste That Kills," Health Press, Santa Fe , New Mexico , c1994. Lipton, Stuart A., Paul A. Rosenberg, 1994. "Excitatory Amino Acids as a Final Common Pathway for Neurologic Disorders," New England Journal of Medicine, Volume 300, No. 9, page 613-622. Olney, John W., et al., 1980. "Brain Damage in Mice From Voluntary Ingestion of Glutamate and Aspartate," Neurobehavioral Toxicology and Teratology, Volume 2, page 125-129. Olney, John W., 1988. "Excitotoxic Food Additives: Functional Teratological Aspects," In Progress in Brain Research, Volume 73 -- Biochemical Basis of Functional Neuroteratology: Permanent Effects of Chemicals on the Developing Brain, Edited by Boer, G.J., et al., Elsevier, New York, c1988. Shaywitz, B.A., et al., 1993. "Evaluation of Aspartame on Behavior and Cognitive Function in Children With Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD)," Journal of Clinical and Experimental Neuropsychology, Volume 15, page 407 Shaywitz, Bennett A., et al., 1994b. "Aspartame, Behavior, and Cognitive Function in Children With Attention Deficit Disorder," Pediatrics, Volume 93, page 70-75. Abou-Donia MB, El-Masry EM, Abdel-Rahman AA, McLendon RE, Schiffman SS. Splenda alters gut microflora and increases intestinal p-glycoprotein and cytochrome p-450 in male rats. J Toxicol Environ Health A. 2008;71(21):1415-29.

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