Aspartame: Safety Approved in 90 Nations, but Damages the Brain

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September 26, 2012 | 154,596 views

Story at-a-glance

  • More than 90 countries have approved the artificial sweetener aspartame for use in thousands of food and beverage products, but multiple studies show it causes concerning effects on the brain
  • A newly published study with rats investigated the chronic effect of aspartame on oxidative stress in the brain; researchers found that there was a significant increase in lipid peroxidation levels, superoxide dismutase activity, GPx levels and CAT activity, showing that chronic exposure of aspartame resulted in detectable methanol in the blood, which may be responsible for the generation of oxidative stress in the brain
  • Earlier this year, another study investigated the effect of long-term intake of aspartame on the antioxidant defense status in the rat brain, and also found it leads to oxidative stress, which tends to cause accelerated tissue and organ damage

Did You Know Aspartame May Make You Fat?

If you're one of the people who suffers from headaches/migraines, vision problems, fatigue, anxiety attacks, abdominal pains or other symptoms when you consume aspartame, deciding to eliminate it from your diet was probably an easy choice.

For the rest of you, doing so based on the possibility that it could "one day" cause symptoms of brain damage is much more abstract, and probably much less likely to make you take action today.

That's why I want to share with you one of the major deceptions surrounding artificial sweeteners like aspartame, which is that they will help you lose weight by avoiding sugar.

This is a MYTH. Research has shown that artificial sweeteners can:

  • Stimulate your appetite
  • Increase carbohydrate cravings
  • Stimulate fat storage and weight gain. In fact, diet sodas, which are well-known sources of artificial sweeteners, may actually double your risk of obesity!6

So much for being a dieter's best friend... The point is, if you're having a hard time giving up aspartame based on its potential to damage your brain, maybe the fact that it could make you pack on the pounds in the very near future will motivate you toward positive change.

My Favorite Tool for Addressing Artificial Sweetener Addictions

Artificial sweeteners tend to trigger enhanced activity within your brain's pleasure centers, yet at the same time provide less actual satisfaction. This separation of the taste of sweetness from caloric content means that when you consume artificial sweeteners, your brain actually craves more of it because your body receives no satisfaction on a cellular level by the sugar imposter. This can actually contribute to not only overeating and weight gain, but also an addiction to artificial sweeteners.

In order to break free, be sure you address the emotional component to your food cravings using a tool such as the Emotional Freedom Technique (EFT). More than any traditional or alternative method I have used or researched, EFT works to overcome food cravings and helps you reach dietary success. If diet soda is the culprit for you, be sure to check out Turbo Tapping, which is an extremely effective and simple tool to get rid of your soda addiction in a short amount of time.

If you're determined to sweeten your foods and beverages, I urge you to consider using stevia extract – a safe and natural sweet herb, which is my personal sweetener of choice. Lo Han is another herbal sweetener that doesn't have the aftertaste of stevia that many object to.

[+]Sources and References [-]Sources and References

  • 1 UAB School of Medicine June 2, 2010
  • 2 Journal of Applied Nutrition Volume 36, Number 1, 1984, Aspartame: Methanol and the Public Health, Woodrow Monte, Ph. D
  • 3 See ref 2
  • 4 Journal of Biosciences epub August 3, 2012
  • 5 Drug and Chemical Toxicology March 2, 2012
  • 6 Study presented at the meeting of the American Diabetes Association in San Diego, 2005