GENTECH archive 8.96-97



Dear Elaine:  Thanks so much for posting the new article.  I'll put it on
some of the lists so that others can enjoy it.  

To get more information on aspartame, email as follows:
Subject: sendme help   
The subject line must be typed exactly like the above line.
Betty Martini             1.  Take the 60-day No-Aspartame test
Mission Possible                 and send us your case history.
PO Box 28098              2.  Tell your doctor and your friends.
Atlanta GA  30358         3.  Return Aspar-Poisoned foods to the store. 
USA                           (Nutrasweet(tm), Equal(tm), Spoonful(tm), etc)

We are dedicated to the proposition that we will not be satisfied until death 
and disability are no longer considered an acceptable cost of business.

On Sat, 11 Jan 1997 wrote:

> FITONICS FOR LIFE - Take Charge of Your Weight, Health, and Happiness by
> Marilyn Diamon (co-author of FIT FOR LIFE) and
> Dr. Donald Burton Schnell
> Chapter 9 - Aspartame and Olestra:  The Shuck and the Jive
> "First, the "shuck."  This is the story of something that looks like sugar,
> supposedly tastes like sugar (although it's 180 to 200 times sweeter), and
> even feels like sugar.  Developed by the Searle pharmacrutical company, it
> was initially marketed to the public as a safe, calorie-free sugar substitute
> in advertisements touting it as "natural" as a glass of milk and a banana, as
> if it comes from something so natural as a piece of fruit or an animal.
> Years later, that ad campaign is still working.  Under the brand names of
> NutraSweet and Equal, aspartame is consumed several times a day by over 100
> million Americans who thing they are doing something good for themselves.
> Aspartame and Soft Drinks
> The food-manufacturing and pharmaceutical industries love aspartame.  It's
> found in everything from cola to coffee cake, cereals to children's vitamin
> supplements.  There's hardly a packaged food that doesn't contain it, and
> nowhere is it more prevalent than in the soft drink industry.  We're guzzling
> so much aspartame in this country, one would think it flowed directly from
> heaven, via the clouds that bring us our rain, into our snow-fed streams,
> lakes, and rivers.
> Only the terrible distance between us and our natural instincts to survive
> can explain how an entire population, one third of which is overweight and
> growing more so, could swallow the scientifically promoted idea that we can
> take a pharmaceutical chemical into our bodies to fool our sweet-craving
> taste buds and not do any damage.  But we're buying it!
> When aspartame was introduced under the brand NutraSweet, diet drink
> consumption went up six times.  In 1985, we were ingesting 800 million pounds
> of aspartame-sweetened soft drinks, a figure that has assuredly doubled by
> now.
> How could that have been possible?  It's no accident.  There is an addictive
> quality to aspartame, just as there is to sugar AND...ASPARTAME CREATES
> INCREASED THIRST.  That may now explain to you why having just one of these
> drinks is never enough.  You have one, and you may find yourself drinking
> them all day long.
> Debunking the Dangerous Mythology of Aspartame
> Now here's the "bitter" truth.  Aspartame is not a product derived from
> bananas or cows.  It's a totally synthetic chemical additive manufactured in
> a laboratory.  There are numerous studies, in all probability funded by the
> manufacturers, reporting "no conclusive evidence" that aspartame is harmful.
>  How can it be explained, then, that this one chemical has prompted the
> longest list of complaints ever received by the FDA?
> The very nature of aspartame and what it does in the body is the answer to
> that question.  The chemical is composed of three ingredients that occur
> naturally but are never found in combination in nature.  When you eat
> aspartame, you are eating two amino acids (phenylalanine and aspartic acid)
> and methanol (methyl alcohol).  (Does your common sense tell you right away
> that that is not how nature intended for you to satisfy your natural craving
> for sweet?)
> After entering the body, the three components of aspartame are rapidly
> released into your bloodstream.  Methanol, a deadly poison that is rarely
> found in free form, is the first to be separated.  It can cause serious
> tissue damage.  Some of the symptoms of methanol poisoning are headaches;
> numbness of the arms, hands, legs, or feet; dizziness; depression; blurred
> vision; nausea; and stomach pain.  At high levels, methanol attacks the
> retina of the eye, causing blindness.
> Pregnant women, in particular, are warned by many doctors to avoid aspartame
> because high methanol levels can result in lack of formation of the eyes of
> their child.  High levels of intake during pregnancy have been associated
> with a 10 to 15 percent drop in IQ levels in infants.  Yet how many products
> containing the chemical offer this warning?
> One of the reasons methanol is so toxic is because your body lacks the
> specific enzymes necessary to detoxify it.  The amount of time it requires to
> be eliminated from your body is five times the elimination time required for
> the ethyl alcohol in beer, whiskey, or wine.  If aspartame is heated above 85
> degrees, which can happen routinely during warehousing and delivery, or even
> if you keep cases of aspartame-sweetened beverages in your garage, the
> product itself decomposes, resulting in freestanding methanol. (1)
> Which means that when you open a can of diet soda to quench your thirst,
> you're drinking a virulent poison.  Before aspartame is eliminated, your body
> must go through an energy-draining conversion process, one stage of which
> results in the conversion of the methanol to formaldehyde.  Formaldehyde is
> used for embalming!
> We need to take the hint!  Why would you ever want to put anything into your
> body that causes formaldehyde formation?  One twelve-ounce can of
> aspartame-sweetened diet beverage contains about ten milligrams of
> NutraSweet.  Heavy consumers of diet beverages could be easily taking in one
> hundred milligrams a day, which is thirteen times the limit recommended as
> safe by the Environmental Protection Agency.
> The Threat May Be Even More Serious Than We Thought
> Although the relative concentration of phenylalanine and aspartic acid is ten
> times higher than that found naturally in foods, literature distributed by
> the industry to promote aspartame products suggests that the body treats
> these two amino acids as if they were coming from fruit, vegetable, milk, or
> meat sources.  That's like saying that smog has the same sweet effect in our
> lungs as the air in a giant redwood forest!
> Dr. H. J. Roberts, a physician and aspartame researcher, explains that when
> these amino acids are consumed in their natural state in foods, they are
> digested and released into your bloodstream slowly, buffered and balanced by
> other amino acids.  However, especially when aspartame is consumed in
> beverages, your body is suddenly flooded with phenylalanine and aspartic
> acid, which can cross into the brain unimpeded and cause "significant
> disturbances."
> Dr. Roberts is an exceptional physician.  He has published more than two
> hundred articles and letters in leading medical journals and has written five
> books, including the highly respected medical text DIFFICULT TO DIAGNOSIS;  A
> (NUTRASWEET):  IS IT SAFE?  he states, "Aspartame is potentially dangerous
> and may produce a wide variety of physical and mental symptoms, most of which
> now go unrecognized or are misinterpreted as serious illness."
> Soon after the introduction of aspartame to the marketplace, Roberts noticed
> clusters of symptoms that were difficult to diagnose and treat.  These
> included:  headaches, dizziness and unsteadiness, confusion and memory loss,
> decreased vision, severe depression, extreme irritability, severe anxiety
> attacks, severe drowsiness, marked personality change, palpitations,
> tachycardia, tingling, convulsions, nausea, severe insomnia, ringing in the
> ears, diarrhea, frequency of urination accompanied by burning, excessive
> thirst, severe slurring of speech, and severe joint pains.
> Here's where we arrive at the crux of our problem.  The symptoms Dr. Roberts
> relates to the introduction of aspartame are most frequently brought to the
> attention of a physician, who may unknowingly misdiagnose them as one form of
> disaease or another.  The symptoms are then treated with other drugs, which
> often add additional side effects, at great expense to you, the patient.
> This is a flagrant example of a terrible injustice:  So much of what is added
> to your food, beyond your control, is contributing to much of the serious
> illness that is crippling our society.  Many doctors and Natural Health
> advocates spoke out against aspartame when it was approved by the
> commissioner of the FDA in 1981.  Yet the commissioner was known to have
> deliberately overruled the warnings from a federally appointed board of
> inquiry that approval be denied.  These official warnings were made after
> significant indications that aspartame caused brain tumors.
> Those Who Spoke Out
> Dissenting FDA scientist Dr. Robert Condon wrote in an internal government
> document in 1981:  "I do not concur that aspartame has been shown safe with
> respect to the induction of brain tumors."2  Other scientists, amoung them
> Dr. Richard Wurtman, professor of neuroendocrinology at MIT, raised serious
> questions about the sweetener's safety.
> As a result, the FDA created a public board of inquiry to examine the results
> of one hundred tests Searle had submitted to the agency in the 1970s.  The
> board, headed by Walle Nauta, a professor of psychology and brain science at
> MIT, recommended against the approval of NutraSweet.  This is the decision
> the FDA commissioner overturned.
> How did this happen?  What lobby prevailed?  Certainly none representing your
> well-being and the health of those you love.
> The Greatest Irony of All
> If you are using aspartame products to lose weight, you should know that's
> like punching a hole in the bottom of your dinghy.  Normally, a meal
> including carbohydrates  will results in a satiated feeling.  This is, in
> part, due to the serotonin production we discussed in the last chapter.
> Aspartame is a phony!  It only masquerades as a carbohydrate.  It has the
> opposite effect.  If you add it to a meal - in a diet soda, coffee, or tea -
> or if it is the sweetener used by industry in one of the foods you have
> eaten, all serotonin production in the brain comes to a stop.  You don't feel
> satisfied at all.  You want more food, and so you keep eating.
> And since you might have bought industry's claims that low-calorie foods take
> the weight off, you reach for more food sweetened with aspartame.  You're in
> a vicious cycle, flooding your body with poisonour methanol, signing up for
> all the potential symptoms and side effects, and struggling with a weight
> problem no amount of low-calorie food seems to lick."
> -----
> 1 David Steinman, DIET FOR A POISONED PLANET, NY, Ballantine Books, 1990, p.
> 190.
> 2 Ibid., p. 192."