Stephen Barrett of HealthFraud list refuses civil, evidence-based discussion
of aspartame (methanol, formaldehyde, formic acid) toxicity: Murray
From: "Stephen Barrett, M.D." sbinfo at quackwatch.org
To: "Rich Murray" <rmforall at comcast.net>
Subject: Re: [healthfraud] request for civil specific critical discussion:
hangover symptoms from methanol in dark wines and liquors or 11% methanol
part of aspartame: HealthFraud: Murray 2004.10.30
Date: Wednesday, November 03, 2004 1:51 PM
>request for civil specific critical discussion: hangover symptoms from
>methanol in dark wines and liquors or 11% methanol part of aspartame:
>HealthFraud: Murray 2004.10.30
>>2004.10.30 Hello HealthFraud members,
>>I will not initiate posts more than once a week on the contentious, yet, I
>believe, remarkably simple, issue of aspartame toxicity. Since Jan 1999 I
>have volunteered as a medical layman to compose long, detailed, balanced,
>fair, civil, referenced reviews of mainly mainstream scientific research --
>in many cases giving full texts of key papers in plain text.
Sorry, your messages are not welcome. The topic and your views have
no relevance to this list.
Stephen Barrett, M.D.
Board Chairman, Quackwatch, Inc.
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request for civil specific critical discussion: hangover symptoms from
methanol in dark wines and liquors or 11% methanol part of aspartame:
HealthFraud: Murray 2004.10.30
2004.10.30 Hello HealthFraud members,
I will not initiate posts more than once a week on the contentious, yet, I
believe, remarkably simple, issue of aspartame toxicity. Since Jan 1999 I
have volunteered as a medical layman to compose long, detailed, balanced,
fair, civil, referenced reviews of mainly mainstream scientific research --
in many cases giving full texts of key papers in plain text.
Scientific dialogue, one of the greatest revolutions in human culture,
progresses for major mutual benefit as competent colleagues offer civil
critiques that cite specific points, whether minor or major, mostly based on
mainstream scientific sources that are publicly available, while sometimes,
especially in complex medical issues, describing personal case reports.
I will, of course, reply as quickly, gratefully, specificly, completely, and
accurately as possible on HealthFraud and my archived group AspartameNM to
such critiques on HealthFraud on this or any other of my toxicity reviews,
which are always
fully in the public domain.
In mutual service, Rich Murray
Rich Murray, MA Room For All rmforall at comcast.net
1943 Otowi Road Santa Fe, New Mexico 87505 USA 505-501-2298
http://groups.yahoo.com/group/aspartameNM/messages group with 135
1,129 posts in a public, searchable archive.
The moderated newsgroup, bionet.toxicology , has accepted 20 of my long
reviews since March 24:
Dr. Charles "Chuck" A. Miller III rellim at tulane.edu
Associate Professor of Environmental Health Sciences
374 Johnston Building, SL29
Tulane Univ. School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine
1430 Tulane Avenue New Orleans, LA 70112 (504)585-6942
Bionet.toxicology news group http://www.bio.net/hypermail/toxicol/currenthttp://groups.yahoo.com/group/aspartameNM/message/1128
hangover symptoms from methanol from dark wines and liquors or 11% methanol
part of aspartame, review of research: Jones AW 1988: Murray 2004.10.23
Fully 11% of aspartame is methanol -- 1,120 mg aspartame in 2 L diet soda,
almost six 12-oz cans, gives 123 mg methanol (wood alcohol). However,
about 30% of the methanol remains in the body as cumulative durable toxic
metabolites of formaldehyde and formic acid, 37 mg daily, a gram every
month, accumulating in and affecting every tissue -- over 60 times the USA
EPA limit for formaldehyde in drinking water.
Aspartame is made of phenylalanine (50% by weight) and aspartic acid (39%),
both ordinary amino acids, bound loosely together by methanol (wood alcohol,
11%). Similar amounts of methanol in many fruits and vegetables, locked up
in complex pectin molecules, and always paired with ethanol, its natural
antidote, are not usually released by human digestion and so are harmless.
But the readily released methanol from aspartame is within hours largely
turned by the liver into formaldehyde and then formic acid, both potent,
Red wine contains twice as much methanol as does diet soda as an impurity,
about one part in ten thousand. It is the natural conversion by the body of
this methanol into formaldehyde and formic acid that is the main cause of
the well known "morning after" hangover symptoms: headache, nausea,
weakness, impaired memory, irritability, anxiety, "brain fog", body pains --
the same symptoms as aspartame victims.
Elimination half-life of methanol during hangover.
Pharmacol Toxicol. 1987 Mar; 60(3): 217-20. PMID: 3588516
" But higher blood-methanol concentrations are definitely associated with
higher blood-ethanol in this sample of Swedish drinking drivers.
Frequent exposure to methanol and its toxic products of metabolism,
formaldehyde and formic acid, might constitute an additional health risk
associated with heavy drinking in predisposed individuals. " Jones AW 1988
Forensic Sci Int. 1988 Jun; 37(4): 277-85.
Relationship between the concentration of ethanol and methanol in blood
samples from Swedish drinking drivers.
Jones AW, Lowinger H.
Department of Alcohol Toxicology, University Hospital, Linkoping, Sweden.
Jones AW has 341 items in PubMed.
hangover research relevant to toxicity of 11% methanol in aspartame
(formaldehyde, formic acid): Calder I (full text): Jones AW: also some
methanol from fruit pectin in colon: Murray 2004.09.11 rmforall
http://bmj.bmjjournals.com/search.dtl search to get free full text
British Medical Journal 1997 (4 January); 314(7073): 2.
Ian Calder, F.R.C.A. [ Tel/Fax: 0171 720 9279 Consultant Anaesthetist at
the National Hospital for Neurology and Neurosurgery,
London WCIN 3BG, UK ]
Editorials Hangovers: Not the ethanol - perhaps the methanol
" Pawan compared the hangover produced by different types of drink (but only
one brand of each) in his study of 20 volunteers. The severity of hangover
symptoms declined in the order of brandy, red wine, rum, whisky, white wine,
gin, vodka, and pure ethanol.(6) Vodka and pure ethanol caused only mild
headaches in two volunteers. "
6. Pawan GL.
Alcoholic drinks and hangover effects.
Proc Nutr Soc 1973 May; 32: 15A. PMID: 4760771
J.A. Oppermann's Searle Co. lab proved that 30% of the methanol in
aspartame fed once to monkeys remained -- surely as formaldehyde and formic
acid in all tissues (1973, 1976, 1979).
This was confirmed by an expert team at the University of Barcelona (Trocho
C, Alemany M, et al, 1998): " ...the binding of methanol-derived carbon [
from low levels of aspartame fed to rats for 10 days ] to tissue proteins
was widespread, affecting all systems, fully reaching even sensitive targets
such as the brain and retina...These are indeed extremely high levels for
adducts of formaldehyde, a substance responsible for chronic deleterious
effects (33), that has also been considered carcinogenic. " Prof. Marià
Alemany alemany at bio.ub.es Life Sci. 1998 June 26; 63(5): 337-49. PMID:
http://groups.yahoo.com/group/aspartameNM/message/1016 President Bush &
formaldehyde (aspartame) toxicity: Ramazzini Foundation carcinogenicity
results Dec 2002: Soffritti: Murray 2003.08.03 Ann N Y Acad Sci. 2002 Dec;
982: 87-105. Results of long-term experimental studies on the
carcinogenicity of formaldehyde and acetaldehyde in rats. M. Soffritti et
al. Cancer Research Center, European Ramazzini Foundation for Oncology and
Environmental Sciences, Bologna, Italy. crcfr at tin.it p. 88 " The
sweetening agent aspartame hydrolyzes in the gastrointestinal tract to
become free methyl alcohol, which is metabolized in the liver to
formaldehyde, formic acid, and CO2. (11) " Ref. (11) is: Medinsky MA &
Dorman DC. 1994; Assessing risks of low-level methanol exposure. CIIT Act.
hangover symptoms from methanol from dark wines and liquors or 11% methanol
part of aspartame, review of research: Jones AW 1988: genotoxicity in human
cells proven, Rencuzogullari E et al 2004 Aug: Murray 2004.10.23 rmforall
Drug Chem Toxicol. 2004 Aug; 27(3): 257-68. Genotoxicity of aspartame.
Rencuzogullari E, Tuylu BA, Topaktas M, Ila HB, Kayraldiz A, Arslan M, Diler
SB. Biology Dept, Faculty of Arts and Sciences, Natural and Applied
Sciences Institute, Cukurova University, Adana, Turkey.
reyyup at mail.cu.edu.tr PMID: 15478947
This expert team found DNA damage in human lymphocytes.
Rencuzogullari E has 4 other similar studies in PubMed.
http://groups.yahoo.com/group/aspartameNM/message/1088 Murray, full plain
text & critique: chronic aspartame in rats affects memory, brain cholinergic
receptors, and brain chemistry, Christian B, McConnaughey M et al, 2004 May:
2004.06.05 Pharmacol Biochem Behav. 2004 May; 78(1): 121-7. PMID: 15159141
Mona M. McConnaughey, Ph.D. Research Assistant Professor 252-744-2756
mcconnaugheym at mail.ecu.edu Twelve rats fed aspartame at otherwise nontoxic
levels for 4 months forgot how to turn right to get a treat, and had
specific brain changes.
http://groups.yahoo.com/group/aspartameNM/message/1067 eyelid contact
dermatitis by formaldehyde from aspartame, Hill AM & Belsito DV, Nov 2003:
Contact Dermatitis. 2003 Nov; 49(5): 258-9. PMID: 14996049
A mysterious dermatitis was caused by a dose the same as two packets Equal
aspartame in Merck Maxalt-MLT worsens migraine,
AstraZeneca Zomig, Eli Lilly Zyprexa,
J&J Merck Pepcid AC (Famotidine 10mg) Chewable Tab,
Pfizer Cool Mint Listerine Pocketpaks: Murray 2002.07.16 rmforall
Migraine MLT-Down: an unusual presentation of migraine
in patients with aspartame-triggered headaches.
Newman LC, Lipton RB Headache 2001 Oct; 41(9): 899-901.
[ Merck 10-mg Maxalt-MLT, for migraine, has 3.75 mg aspartame,
while 12 oz diet soda has 200 mg. ]
Headache Institute, St. Lukes-Roosevelt Hospital Center, New York, NY
Department of Neurology newmanache at aol.com
Albert Einstein College of Medicine, Bronx, NY
Innovative Medical Research RLipton at aecom.yu.eduhttp://groups.yahoo.com/group/aspartameNM/message/855
Blumenthall & Vance: aspartame chewing gum headaches Nov 1997:
Murray 2002.07.28 rmforall
Harvey J. Blumenthal, MD, Dwight A Vance, RPh
Chewing Gum Headaches. Headache 1997 Nov-Dec; 37(10): 665-6.
Department of Neurology, University of Oklahoma College of Medicine,
Tulsa, USA. neurotulsa at aol.com
Aspartame, a popular dietetic sweetener, may provoke headache in some
susceptible individuals. Herein, we describe three cases of young women
with migraine who reported their headaches could be provoked by chewing
gum sweetened with aspartame. [ 6-8 mg aspartame per stick chewing gum ]
http://groups.yahoo.com/group/aspartameNM/message/1077 eight depressed
people react strongly to aspartame, Prof. Ralph G. Walton, MD, 1993
double-blind study, full text: Murray 2004.04.26 rmforall They reported
with aspartame, compared to placebo, much higher levels of anxiety, poor
memory, nausea, depression, anger, and malaise. A 60 kg subject would
have had 1800 mg aspartame, the same as nine 12-oz diet sodas, daily for 7
days. 330-740-3621 rwalton193 at aol.com PMID: 8373935
8 more Rapid Responses to Aspartame and its effects on health, BMJ:
Murray 2004.10.18 rmforall
5 critical Rapid Responses to Aspartame and its effects on health, Michael E
J Lean and Catherine R Hankey, BMJ 2004; 329: 755-756: Murray 2004.10.05
Aspartame and its effects on health, Michael E.J. Lean, Catherine R. Hankey,
Glasgow UK, British Medical Journal: 11% methanol component of aspartame,
and same level of methanol in dark wines and liquors, turns to formaldehyde
and formic acid, the main cause of chronic hangover symptoms: Murray
http://bmj.bmjjournals.com/cgi/eletters/329/7469/755#76712http://groups.yahoo.com/group/aspartameNM/message/927 Donald Rumsfeld,
1977 head of Searle Corp., got aspartame FDA approval: Turner: Murray
http://groups.yahoo.com/group/aspartameNM/message/1065 politicians and
celebrities hooked on diet sodas (aspartame): Murray 2004.03.24
Senator John Edwards still has a dozen Diet Cokes daily -- a gallon,
which gives as much methanol as a half-gallon of red wine.
(NutraSweet, Equal, Canderel, E951), after eight years of controversy, was
suddenly and capriciously approved in July 1981 by a new FDA commissioner,
Arthur Hull Hayes, Jr ( just appointed by President Reagan ), disregarding
the negative vote of his own Scientific Board of Inquiry.
http://google.com gives 249,000 websites for "aspartame", with the top 8
of 10 listings being anti-aspartame, while http://groups.google.com finds
on 700 MB of posts from 20 years of Usenet groups, 101,000 posts.
http://news.google.com many recent aspartame items from 4500 sources.
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/PubMed lists 771 aspartame items.
http://groups.yahoo.com/group/aspartame/messages 833 members, 17,549 posts
in their public archive http://www.presidiotex.com/aspartame/ Aspartame
Victims Support Group bryanth at presidiotex.comhttp://www.dorway.com/enclosur.htmlhttp://groups.yahoo.com/group/aspartameNM/message/53
aspartame history Part 1/4 1964-1976: Gold: Murray 1999.11.06
http://www.holisticmed.com/aspartame/scf2002-response.htm a detailed
critique of European Commission Scientific Committee on Food re aspartame
( 2002.12.04 )
http://www.HolisticMed.com/aspartamemgold at holisticmed.com
Aspartame Toxicity Information Center Mark D. Gold also Co-Moderator
12 East Side Drive #2-18 Concord, NH 03301 603-225-2110
"Scientific Abuse in Aspartame Research"
Many scientific studies and case histories report: * headaches * many body
and joint pains (or burning, tingling, tremors, twitching, spasms, cramps,
stiffness, numbness, difficulty swallowing) * fever, fatigue, swollen
glands * "mind fog", "feel unreal", poor memory, confusion, anxiety,
irritability, depression, mania, insomnia, dizziness, slurred speech, sexual
problems, poor vision, hearing (deafness, tinnitus), or taste * red face,
itching, rashes, allergic dermatitis, hair loss, burning eyes or throat, dry
eyes or mouth, mouth sores, burning tongue * obesity, bloating, edema,
anorexia, poor appetite or excessive hunger or thirst * breathing problems,
shortness of breath * nausea, diarrhea or constipation * coldness
* sweating * racing heart, low or high blood pressure, erratic blood sugar
levels * hypothryroidism or hyperthyroidism * seizures * birth defects
* brain cancers * addiction * aggrivates diabetes, autism, allergies,
lupus, ADHD, fibromyalgia, chronic fatigue syndrome, multiple chemical
sclerosis, pseudotumor cerebri, Grave's disease, Parkinson's disease, and