IUBio GIL .. BIOSCI/Bionet News .. Biosequences .. Software .. FTP

8 more Rapid Responses to Aspartame and its effects on health, BMJ: Murray 2004.10.18 rmforall

Rich Murray rmforall at att.net
Wed Oct 20 13:55:23 EST 2004


http://groups.yahoo.com/group/aspartameNM/message/1124
8 more Rapid Responses to Aspartame and its effects on health, BMJ:
Murray 2004.10.18 rmforall

http://groups.yahoo.com/group/aspartameNM/message/1120
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
rmforall

http://groups.yahoo.com/group/aspartameNM/message/1117
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
2004.10.04 rmforall

http://bmj.bmjjournals.com/cgi/eletters/329/7469/755#76712

 Re: Aspartame Can Damage Your Health 10 October 2004

   J. Dallas Van Wagoner, M.D., Disabled Physician   lastcaldoc at aol.com
929 W. Sunset Blvd #21,PMB 141, St. George, UT 84770 USA
Send response to journal: Re: Re: Aspartame Can Damage Your Health

I became severely ill with chronic fatigue and severe depression in 1996. In
2001 I read an article on aspartame and I stopped using it. I have gradually
become much improved, and I am now able to function without constantly
contemplating suicide.

There is more than enough evidence that aspartame is unsafe, but industry is
too powerful and has too much money to allow the evidence to become known.

There have been studies in the US that have shown that artificial sweeteners
actually contribute to weight gain now to weight loss. These studies seem to
have been suppressed also. Amazing what money can do.

Before you publically support toxic agents you should do a more complete
reveiw of the literature.

I am very dissapointed in the British Medical Journal. Of course that may be
the British way of life.

I can be reached at lastcaldoc at aol.com.

Thank you

Competing interests: None declared

Re: Aspartame Can Damage Your Health10 October 2004

   Carol Guilford, writer Los Angeles, CA      CarolG8 at att.net
Send response to journal: Re: Re: Aspartame Can Damage Your Health

In 1995, the US FDA was forced to reveal under the Freedom of Information
Act, 92 symptoms caused by aspartame.
Memory loss, seizures, death, bone and joint pain, change in vision, change
in heart rate.
To see a list go to www.dorway.com, www.presidiotex.com/aspartame or
www.aspartamekills.com

Competing interests: None declared

Aspartame and its effects on health 11 October 2004

   Joanna Clarke, Microbiology Research Technician
Glasgow Royal Infirmary G4 0SF
Send response to journal: Re: Aspartame and its effects on health
http://www.additivesout.org.uk/
[   Geoff Brewer  BSc., MInstLM. S.A.C. Dip. (Clinical Nutrition).
National Co-ordinator  Additives Survivors' Network (UK)
63 Downlands Road  DEVIZES SN10 5EF Email: geoffbrewer at eurobell.co.uk

Joanna Clarke BSc. AIBMS MIBiol. CBiol.
Scottish Co-ordinator Additives Survivors' Network
35 Hamilton Drive GLASGOW G12 8DW   Email: geoffbrewer at eurobell.co.uk  ]

Dear Sir,

I agree with Professor Lean and Dr. Hankey that the proliferation of
sensationalist websites attributing any and every symptom a person might
have to the consumption of aspartame is not helpful. Such sites cloud the
issue for people like myself who would like to see a rational approach and
solution to the aspartame problem.

As one of the individuals who has a "frightening personal account" of
"multiple health disasters" which disappeared when I removed aspartame from
my diet (and which reappeared when inadvertently re-challenged), I can
assure all readers that I do not have an "opinion" "fuelled . by anecdote",
nor by any website, but that I have experienced-based knowledge. Duty or
not, the government bodies are not monitoring health- effects of aspartame:
the necessary system for the reporting of such problems does not exist; the
medical profession has not been alerted to the side-effects experienced from
the many different forms of aspartame and so cannot contribute useful
clinical information.

After my own bad experiences of aspartame, I started to invite people around
me to talk about any awareness they had of ill-effects from the sweetener. I
very easily contacted over thirty individuals (in Scotland) who told the
same story of severe illness, of negligible help from medical professionals,
and of finally discovering for themselves what was the cause. Consider the
implications of this. If a private individual can trace thirty people just
by asking around, the total number of aspartame 'survivors' out there must
be very large. Since, for every individual who has managed to work out their
aspartame problem for themselves, there must be many more who have not, and
the number of these sufferers must therefore be staggering.

Professor Lean concludes "the public probably needs protection against
misleading websites". I wholeheartedly agree, but, appearing beside the
article in the British Medical Journal website is a link to a site claiming
"reliable and official information about aspartame". This website belongs to
the makers, and global distributors, of aspartame. Like all commercial
enterprises, it uses careful wording to appear to answer questions on safety
and to give reassurances without actually acknowledging the problems which
raised the safety questions in the first place. The site is clearly neither
'reliable' nor 'official', it is a commercial PR exercise, and is using
advertisement in a respected medical journal to camouflage its true nature..

The public definitely needs protection against ALL misleading websites.

Yours faithfully,

Joanna Clarke BSc. AIBMS MIBiol Glasgow

Competing interests: None declared

Aspartame -- safety in science 12 October 2004

   Nick Finer, Senior Research Associate and Consultant in Obesity Medicine
University of Cambridge and Addenbrooke's Hospital   nf237 at cam.ac.uk

Send response to journal: Re: Aspartame -safety in science

Lean and Hankey's editorial on aspartame succinctly outlined the substantial
evidence that supports the safety of aspartame. They also address the
evidence that suggests aspartame may usefully protect consumers from some of
the environmental pressures that have been firmly implicated in the current
epidemic of obesity and diabetes. Lean and Hankey also drew attention to the
extraordinary opinions paraded on web- sites that border from the merely
uninformed and un-evidenced, to the frankly bizarre.

It is not surprising therefore that this editorial has excited responses
from excited nutritionists, wellness experts and journalists. It is not
possible to refute each of the issues raised in the space of a rapid
response letter, but it is worth dissecting some of statements to illustrate
the often simplistic and selective approach to evidence that detractors use.

Joseph Mercola uses emotive and ill-defined terms such as 'natural
substances' to imply that natural is good and unnatural is bad. Digitalis,
bacterial contamination and aflatoxins are all natural but I would rather my
food was free of them. He talks about 'flooding the brain' with amino acids,
something for which there is simply no evidence. His statement pre-supposes
that aspartame causes excessive rises in plasma phenylalanine that then
crosses the blood brain barrier to enter the brain.

Plasma phenylalanine levels rise to between 80 and 120 mmol/L after a
protein meal such as a glass of the 'natural substance' milk. This is about
the same as after a dose of 34 mg/kg bw aspartame (equivalent to about 28
cans of aspartame-sweetened drink consumed all in one go) (1). Current data
(2) show that average daily intake of aspartame in adults is between 0.05
and 0.4 mg/kg bw/day and maximum values between 1 and 2.75 mg/kg bw/day. In
French young diabetics mean consumption of aspartame was estimated at 1.9
mg/kg bw/d (less than 5% of the ADI) and maximum intake was 15.6 mg/kg bw/d
(40% of the ADI). It is thus unclear on what data Dr Mercola has based his
statement.

Dr Briffa and others raise the issue of the small amounts of methanol
produced by aspartame metabolism. It is the metabolite formate, not methanol
itself that can cause toxicity in man.

In order for the body to accumulate a significant amount of formate, a human
must consume 200 to 500 mg of methanol per kg of body weight (3), an amount
that corresponds to drinking 600 to 1700 cans of diet soft drink at once.
Researchers have studied whether methanol levels in the blood rise
significantly when humans consume aspartame.

In one study, subjects were given 34 mg- aspartame/kg body weight. Blood
levels did not rise detectably (4)

Another experiment showed that blood methanol levels did not rise even when
subjects consumed 200 mg-aspartame/kg body weight (5).

In long term studies, researchers found that when humans consume aspartame,
the resulting formate production is balanced by excretion, so that blood
levels of formate do not change [Leon and others, 1989].

Briffa goes on to quote a study by Trocho et al (7) as evidence for
formaldehyde accumulation in animals with 'low level of ingestion of
aspartame', but not that from Tephly (8) who questions these conclusions in
a letter published to the journal editor and outlines previous research on
methanol toxicity in monkeys not discussed by Trocho et al. relevant to the
question of methanol toxicity. Tephly cites previous studies in monkeys that
show high levels and rapid rise of blood formate following administration of
methanol or formaldehyde. This study and a human case study of formaldehyde
intoxication provide evidence for a half-life of 1.5 minutes for
formaldehyde and its rapid conversion to formate. He also questions the use
of rodents to study methanol toxicity as primates metabolize methanol and
formate by different enzymatic pathways. More importantly he also describes
the normal disposition of formaldehyde to formate and it's inclusion into
the one-carbon folate pool eventually leading to S-adenosylmethionine (SAM),
often referred to as the universal methyl donor. Tephly reports that the
appearance of around 1% of the radio-labelled carbon in protein, DNA or RNA
could be explained by the very rapid flux of the carbon through SAM or other
folate dependant reactions into these molecules and tissues. He stresses
that this flux of carbon derived from methanol from any source (fruit juice,
pectin or aspartame) is a result of normal biochemistry and is not a toxic
event.

On the issue of research sponsorship and whether this biases the research.
It seems entirely appropriate that companies should respond to concerns over
their products' safety by commissioning research. The only issue is the
quality of that research of which a good test is whether it has been
accepted for publication in peer reviewed journals. It is a dangerous game
to assume that non-industry researchers or commentators do not have
conflicts; they may be renewing grants, writing books or newspaper articles
or trying to attract patients to their practice for personal income.

Amongst the 74 studies Dr Briffa quotes as non-industry supported by are
several papers from the MIT group. It is curious that their recent
publication (9) that concluded 'Large daily doses of aspartame had no effect
on neuropsychologic, neurophysiologic, or behavioral functioning in healthy
young adults' is omitted. This study was jointly funded by both NutraSweet
and The Center for Brain Science. Would this, coming from a laboratory and
clinical research centre at the heart of raising dangers about aspartame be
regarded as industry sponsored or non-industry sponsored?

Those wishing authoritative recent reviews would do well to read the
'Opinion of the Scientific Committee on Food: Update on the Safety of
Aspartame' (10) and the 2002 issue of Regulatory Toxicology and Pharmacology
(11).

(1) Stegink LD et al. Effect of aspartame and aspartate loading upon plasma
and erythrocyte free amino acid levels in normal adult volunteers. J Nutr.
1977, 107: 1837-1845.

(2) French Food Safety Agency Report 2002.
http://www.aspartame.org/pdf/AFSSA-Eng.pdf.

(3) Food and Drug Administration, Federal Register, 984.

(4) Stegink LD et al. Effect of repeated ingestion of aspartame-sweetened
beverage on plasma amino acid, blood methanol and blood formate
concentrations in normal adults. Metabolism 1989, 38:357-363.

(5) Stegink LD, Filer LJ. Effects of aspartame ingestion on plasma
aspartate, phenylalanine and methanol concentrations in potentially
sensitive populations. In: The clinical evaluation of a food additive.
Assessment of Aspartame. Tschanz C, Butchko HH, Stargel WW, Kotsonis FN,
Edts, 1996(a), pp 87-113, CRC Press, Boca Raton, New York, London, Tokyo.

(6) Leon AS et al. Safety of Long-term Large Doses of Aspartame. Arch Intern
Med. 1989;1 49:2318-2324

(7) Trocho et al. Formaldehyde derived from dietary aspartame binds to
tissue
components in vitro. Life Sci. 1998, 63 (5), 337-349.

(8) Tephly TR. Comments on the purported generation of formaldehyde and
adduct formation from the sweetener aspartame. Life Sci., 1999, 65(13),
157-160

(9) Spiers PA, Sabounjian L, Reiner A, Myers DK, Wurtman J, Schomer DL.
Aspartame: neuropsychologic and neurophysiologic evaluation of acute and
chronic effects. Am J Clin Nutr. 1998 Sep;68(3):531-7

(10) Opinion of the Scientific Committee on Food: Update on the Safety of
Aspartame'. SCF/CS/ADD/EDUL/222 Final. Brusssels Dec 2002.
http://www.food.gov.uk/multimedia/pdfs/aspartameopinion.pdf

(11) Butchko HH et al. Aspartame: Review of safety. Regul Toxicol Pharmacol.
2002;35:S1-S93.

Competing interests: Medical Adviser to Ajinomoto

There's no place to hide 15 October 2004

   John P Briffa,  Doctor and Writer    drjbriffa at aol.com
Woolaston House, 25 Southwood Lane, Highgate, London N6 5ED
Send response to journal:  Re: There's no place to hide

I read with interest Dr Finer's riposte (1) to the rapid responses relating
to Lean and Hankey's editorial (2). It is clearly an attempt to discredit
detractors and allay fears about aspartame. In his response, Dr Finer
strives to cast doubt on the validity of the criticisms of aspartame, and
states that "it is worth dissecting some of [sic] statements to illustrate
the often simplistic and selective approach to evidence that detractors
use". It seems only reasonable that Dr Finer's response should be subjected
to the same scrutiny.

Dr Finer dismisses much of the evidence which shows aspartame has the
potential for harm by saying that the "issue is the quality of that research
of which a good test is whether it has been accepted for publication in peer
reviewed journals". Earlier in his response, however, he cites a study that
is not published in a peer-reviewed journal (3).

Also, I feel compelled to remind Dr Finer that of the 92 independently
funded aspartame safety studies referred to in the on-line review referred
to in my earlier response (4) (92 per cent of which suggested that aspartame
has the potential to cause harm), ALL were published in peer-reviewed
journals (5).

The quality of some of the science that Dr Finer uses to make his case is
also leaves a lot to be desired. For instance, he cites one study (6) which
involved giving aspartame to just 6 (six) healthy young adults for just 1
(one) day (when it is the chronic, long-term exposure to the constituents of
aspartame and its metabolites that is consistently raised as the real
concern).

Another study that Dr Finer cites (7) is also critically flawed. This study
assessed the effects of aspartame on healthy subjects who may not be
representative of individuals sensitive to aspartame or its metabolites.
Although 24 weeks in duration, this study does not preclude health hazards
that may come from consuming aspartame in the long term. It should be noted
that some individuals may be able to ingest aspartame without
clinically-obvious adverse effects for many months or years (8).

Also, in the Leon study (7), aspartame was given in slow-dissolving capsules
i.e. in a way that is not 'bioequivalent' to aspartame ingested via food
products, particularly beverages. This study still actually turned up a
greater than 50 per cent increase in adverse reactions in the aspartame
group.

However, because the researchers split the reactions into 14 small
sub-categories, the chances of seeing statistically significant differences
in any one sub-category were very low.

It seems utterly ironic to me that Dr Finer should emphasise the importance
of quality research, only for him to use such poor science in an attempt to
vindicate aspartame. And it appears somewhat hypocritical that Dr Finer
should accuse others of using a "simplistic and selective" approach to the
evidence they use.

Dr Finer seems dismissive of the potential for bias related to industry
funding in the area. Is he really blissfully unaware of the very real issues
that may pervert scientific objectivity, including publication bias? Maybe
he is ignorant of the published research which shows that pharmaceutical
industry funding can have a significant impact on the apparent outcome of
research (9).

It may enlighten Dr Finer to know that the authors of this study concluded
that "systematic bias favours products which are made by the company funding
the research". It seems that in the area of industry-related research, there
's an element of 'he who pays the piper, calls the tune'. And let us not
imagine for one moment that the food industry is not capable of underhand
and cynical practices. Only this week, BBC's Panorama programme did a good
job of exposing the food industry's attempts to influence the "official"
findings of diet-related reports and food policy, as well as its ability to
coerce and corrupt at the highest level (10).

It is perhaps worthy of note that the lead author of the editorial,
Professor Michael Lean, is not only Professor of human nutrition at the
Unversity of Glasgow, but also the Chairman of the Advisory Committee on
Research (ACR) that advises the Food Standards Agency (FSA) - the
organisation that plays a leading role in dictating food policy in the UK.

Personally, I am concerned that several members of the ACR have personal
interests in food companies or trade organisations that promote specific
foodstuffs (11).

I am also perplexed at how Professor Lean (and his co- author) managed to
write an editorial that seemed to take aspartame's safety so
unquestioningly, in the face of considerable scientific evidence to the
contrary.

In his response, Finer cites another study that appears to exonerate
aspartame (12). He seems at great pains to point out that this study was
partly funded by the aspartame industry, and questions whether this study
should be regarded as industry funded or not. Does he really need someone to
answer this question for him? Finer's own observations here are utterly
consistent with the findings of the on-line review that shows that
industry-funded (either whole or in part) research ALWAYS finds in favour of
aspartame (5).

Still further cause for concern comes from Dr Finer's comments (or rather,
lack of them) regarding aspartame's role in weight loss. He congratulates
Lean and Hankey on addressing "the evidence that suggests aspartame may
usefully protect consumers from some of the environmental pressures that
have been firmly implicated in the current epidemic of obesity and
diabetes". Dr Finer fails to acknowledge, however, that Lean and Hankey's
appraisal in this respect was theoretical.

I wonder what Dr Finer thinks of the glaring lack of evidence that aspartame
ingestion is effective for weight loss. Perhaps he could explain his
appetite for aspartame, bearing in mind the fact that not one single
double-blind placebo-controlled study that attests to aspartame's efficacy
and a weight loss aid has been published?

I note that Professor Lean is quoted on the FSA website as saying: "Very
important policy decisions are being made by the FSA and it is in the public
interest that that these are based on top quality research." Maybe he too
would like to comment on the dearth of "top quality research" that exists in
support of aspartame's supposed health benefits?

The bias that pervades this area seems neatly mirrored in the electronic
responses to Lean and Hankey's editorial. It is perhaps worth noting that,
to date, all but one of the rapid responses that pertain to aspartame have
been critical of the review and/or aspartame. Some may take a rather cynical
view of the fact that the only individual who has leapt to aspartame's
defence is in the pay of its manufacturer (Ajinomoto).

Dr Finer claims not to be surprised that there have been responses from
"excited nutritionists, wellness experts and journalists". Dr Finer's use of
the adjective "excited" seems inappropriate to me. Perhaps this was an
attempt by him to portray genuinely concerned individuals as somewhat
hysterical?

Also, perhaps Dr Finer could explain why he chose to refer to the responses
from "nutritionists, wellness experts or journalists" when, in fact, the
majority of responses, to date, have come from doctors.

I wonder whether Dr Finer calculated that this omission might somehow make
it easier for him to dismiss the "detractors".

Dr Finer does make one valid point, though: that some individuals critical
of aspartame have their own agendas. I'll tell him what mine is: that people
should have access to balanced information about aspartame, including the
knowledge that:
a. aspartame has not been proven to help weight loss.
b. a considerable body of evidence exists which shows that this synthetic
chemical has potential for adverse effects on human health.
c. there is a glaring disparity between the findings of industry- funded and
non-industry funded research.

Dr Finer's soothing reassurances do not change these basic facts. While he
may believe that there is 'safety in science', a closer, more impartial look
at the research into aspartame reveals that, in reality, there is no place
to hide.

References:

1. Finer, N. Aspartame - safety in science. Rapid response published 12th
October 2004.

2. Lean MJ, Hankey C. Aspartame and its effects on health. BMJ 2004
328: 755-756.

3. Stegink LD, Filer LJ. Effects of aspartame ingestion on plasma aspartate,
phenylalanine and methanol concentrations in potentially sensitive
populations. In: The clinical evaluation of a food additive. Assessment of
Aspartame. Tschanz C, Butchko HH, Stargel WW, Kotsonis FN, Edts, 1996(a), pp
87-113, CRC Press, Boca Raton, New York, London, Tokyo.

4. Briffa J. It's not just misleading websites that the public should be
protected from. BMJ Rapid response published 3rd October 2004.

5. http://www.dorway.com/peerrev.html

6. Stegink LD, et al. Effect of repeated ingestion of aspartame- sweetened
beverage on plasma amino acid, blood methanol and blood formate
concentrations in normal adults. Metabolism 1989; 38: 357-363.

7. Roberts. Reactions Attributed to Aspartame-Containing Products: 551 Cases
Journal of Applied Nutrition 1988 40; 85-94

8. Leon AS, et al. Safety of Long-term Large Doses of Aspartame. Arch Intern
Med. 1989;1(49): 2318-2324

9. Lexchin J, et al. Pharmaceutical industry sponsorship and research
outcome and quality: systematic review. BMJ 2003; 326(7400): 1167-1170.

10. Panorama: The Trouble With Sugar BBC1 aired 10th October 2004

11. http://www.food.gov.uk/multimedia/pdfs/acr051_6.pdf

12. Spiers PA, et al. Aspartame: neuropsychologic and neurophysiologic
evaluation of acute and chronic effects. Am J Clin Nutr. 1998; 68(3):
531-537.

Competing interests: None declared

What Aspartame has in common with any artificial sweetener ("natural" or
not) in effects on health 15 October 2004

   Tanya Zilberter, PhD, Health educator, writer:  www.dietandbody.com
www.bantadiet.com   banta at dietandbody.com
Stockholm, Sweden, 13542    tz at healself.com
Send response to journal: Re: What Aspartame has in common with any
artificial sweetener ("natural" or not) in effects on health

In 1974, Drs Fischer, Hommel, Fiedler, and Bibergeil published an article
titled "Reflex mechanism on insulin secretion." It's been followed by
research data showing the details of insulin secretion time course.

The insulin level rises already in the first minute after the start of a
carbohydrate-rich meal, whereas the glucose level begins to increase only in
the third minute. This early rise in insulin level is observed also when
either carbohydrate-free food or even artificial food without any caloric
value is offered. The phenomenon is now well-researched under the name
"cephalic phase of insulin release" though it is amazing how little it
influenced the art and science of dietetics and the current discussion.

It usually comes without questioning that it's carbohydrate- containing food
absorbed into the circulation that stimulate the pancreatic beta-cells to
secrete insulin. However, careful analysis of the time course of insulin
secretion during carbohydrate ingestion has shown that insulin secretion can
start even before glucose is actually absorbed. This so-called early insulin
response is elicited by stimulation not only of taste buds but also through
sight and smell of the food or even by meal anticipation.

Why any sweet taste, coming with any artificial sweetener, raises glucose
concentration in the blood *before* the food has a chance to be digested?
Because your body knows that eventually, it will have all the carbs you've
swallowed and it doesn't wait until it that happens and borrows real
carbohydrates from its carbohydrate depots. When the sweet-tasted food is
real, the carbohydrates eventually do get into the blood. And if they're
not?

Being fooled, your body reacts rather vindictively: it forces you to * want*
more sweets plus next time, you consume more calories with any food,
including the innocent protein food -- to convert it into glucose in process
of gluconeogenesis. So, you'd be better off without artificial sweeteners,
Aspartame or not.

Sources

Endocrinol Exp 1974 Jun;8(2):137-46

Am J Physiol 1975 Oct;229(4):1019-22

Physiol Behav 1990 Jun;47(6):1295-7

Am J Physiol Endocrinol Metab 278(4):E603-E610

dietandbody.com/article1082.html

Competing interests: None declared

Aspartame - the problems of population studies 15 October 2004

   Robert WJ Dingwall, Professor University of Nottingham NG7 2RD
 robert.dingwall at nottingham.ac.uk
Send response to journal: Re: Aspartame - the problems of population studies

It seems to me that there is a wider problem revealed by this debate, namely
the extent to which safety testing relies on population-level studies which
have not, thus far, paid much attention to the distribution of harmful
effects and the possibility that some genotypes are more sensitive than
others.

Anecdotally, aspartame seems to be capable of triggering me into
migraine-like reactions, like those that I experience from exposure to
monosodium glutamate, cheap red wine and other known triggers.

People like me seem to be a relatively small proportion of the population
but can
certainly experience serious adverse effects from substances that are
considered to be safe in population studies and are widely employed by the
food industry.

Our sensitivity almost certainly has a genetic basis, although I am not
aware of any work that identifies specific alleles or even proposes a
plausible mechanism that might precipitate such reactions.

I suspect that a new generation of food safety studies needs to be
considered to take account of genetic variation and that we should be moving
towards a situation where it is easier for those of us at-risk to identify
ourselves and to determine from product and menu labelling that we should
not consumer certain products, both natural and synthetically enhanced, that
contain known triggers of adverse reactions when encountering our
metabolism.

This does not necessarily imply that products like aspartame are not safe
for mass consumption - but I would personally prefer to avoid a couple of
hours intense pain and vomiting if I inadvertently consume more than a
fairly small amount.

Competing interests: None declared

Re: Aspartame - the problems of population studies 17 October 2004

   Ellen C G Grant, physcian and medical gynaecologist
20 Coombe Ridings, Kingston-upon-Thames, KT2 7JU   e.n.grant at limeone.net
Send response to journal: Re: Re: Aspartame - the problems of population
studies

It is not only genetics which determines susceptibility to have migraine
attacks triggered by common foods and chemicals like aspartame.

Women are more reactive in the premenstrual phase of the menstrual cycle.
While the pre-trial incidence of migraine was 9%, first year exposures to
some trial combinations of exogenous progesterones and oestrogens induced
migraine in 40 to 60% of women. (1)

Also common nutritional deficiencies of zinc and /or magnesium increase the
susceptibility in many of us. Among couples complaining of unexplained
infertility or recurrent miscarriages, individuals who also suffered from
headaches or migraine attacks had lower levels of these essential minerals
than headache-free couples. (2)

Neil Ward and colleagues found that intake of the food additive tartrazine
reduced serum and salivary zinc concentrations and increased urinary zinc
content with a corresponding deterioration in behaviour/emotional responses
of hyperactive children compared with controls. (3)

A similar sudden loss of in zinc, especially in individuals who are already
zinc deficient, may help to explain the different individual responses to
aspartame.

1. Grant ECG. Relation between headaches from oral contraceptives and
development of endometrial arterioles. BMJ 1968; 3: 402-5.

2. Grant ECG. The pill, hormone replacement therapy, vascular and mood
over-reactivity , and mineral imbalance.
J Nutr Environ Med 1998; 8: 105-116.

3. Ward NI, Soulsbury KA, Zettel VH, et al. The influence of the chemical
additive tartrazine on the zinc-status of hyperactive children - a
double-blind placebo-controlled study. J Nutr Med 1990; 1: 51-57.

Competing interests: None declared
***************************************************************

"However, it must be taken into account that ASP induced the CA and
micronuclei formation in a dose-dependent manner.

It is not possible to conclude that ASP is safe according to these results.

Therefore, it is necessary to be careful when using it in food and beverages
as a sweetener."

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 Department, Faculty of Arts and Sciences, Natural and Applied
Sciences Institute, Cukurova University, Adana, Turkey.
reyyup at mail.cu.edu.tr

http://groups.yahoo.com/group/aspartameNM/message/1123
genotoxins, Comet assay in mice: Ace-K, stevia fine; aspartame poor;
sucralose, cyclamate, saccharin bad: Sasaki YF, Aug, Dec 2002:
Rencuzogullari E et al, Aug 2004: Murray 2003.01.27, 2004.10.17 rmforall

http://groups.yahoo.com/group/aspartameNM/message/1122
UN FAO & WHO approve Steviol glycosides as sweetener June 2004, imports to
UK no longer blocked: Martini: Murray 2004.10.17 rmforall

http://groups.yahoo.com/group/aspartameNM/message/1125
Aspartame -- Sweet Or Sour? Thea Jourdan, The London Daily Mail 2004.10.04:
Murray 2004.10.18 rmforall

http://groups.yahoo.com/group/aspartameNM/message/1126
same amount of methanol (source of formaldehyde, formic acid) from aspartame
as from dark wines and liquors: Utz: Murray 2004.10.19 rmforall

http://groups.yahoo.com/group/aspartameNM/message/957
safety of aspartame Part 1/2 12.4.2: EC HCPD-G SCF:
Murray 2003.01.12 rmforall  EU Scientific Committee on Food, a whitewash

http://groups.yahoo.com/group/aspartameNM/message/1045
http://www.holisticmed.com/aspartame/scf2002-response.htm
Mark Gold exhaustively critiques European Commission Scientific
Committee on Food re aspartame ( 2002.12.04 ): 59 pages, 230 references

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
138 members,  1,126 posts in a public searchable archive   also Co-Moderator

http://groups.yahoo.com/group/aspartame/messages  bryanth at brooksdata.net
Aspartame Victims Support Group    Edward Bryant Holman, Chief Moderator
853 members, 17,533 posts in a public, searchable archive
http://www.presidiotex.com/aspartame/

http://www.HolisticMed.com/aspartame    mgold 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
http://www.holisticmed.com/aspartame/abuse/methanol.html
"Scientific Abuse in Aspartame Research"
***************************************************************





More information about the Toxicol mailing list

Send comments to us at archive@iubio.bio.indiana.edu