Article written by Nancy Markle

I have spent several days lecturing at the World Environmental Conference on Aspartame, marketed as “NutraSweet”, “Equal”, and “Spoonful”. In the keynote address by the EPA, [it was] announced that there was an epidemic of multiple sclerosis and systemic lupus, and [the EPA] did not understand what toxin was causing this to be rampant across the United States. I explained that I was there to lecture on exactly that subject.

Aspartame is made up of two amino acids, Aspartic Acid and Phenylalanine, plus methanol (wood alcohol).

When the temperature of Aspartame exceeds 86 degrees F, the wood alcohol in aspartame coverts to formaldehyde and then to formic acid, which in turn causes metabolic acidosis. (Formic acid is the chemical found in the sting of fire ants). The methanol toxicity mimics multiple sclerosis; thus, people were being diagnosed with having multiple sclerosis in error. The multiple sclerosis is not a death sentence, where methanol toxicity is.

In the case of systemic lupus, we are finding it has become almost as rampant as multiple sclerosis, especially Diet Coke and Diet Pepsi drinkers. Also, with methanol toxicity, the victims usually drink three to four 12 oz. cans of them per day, some even more. In the cases of systemic lupus, which is triggered by aspartame, the victim usually does not know that the aspartame is the culprit. The victim continues its use, aggravating the lupus to such a degree that sometimes it becomes life threatening. When we get people off the aspartame, those with systemic lupus usually become asymptomatic. Unfortunately, we can not reverse this disease.

On the other hand, in the case of those diagnosed with multiple sclerosis, (when in reality, the disease is methanol toxicity), most of the symptoms disappear. We have seen cases where their vision has returned and even their hearing has returned. This also applies to cases of tinnitus.

During a lecture, I said “If you are using aspartame (NutraSweet, Equal, Spoonful, etc.) and you suffer from fibromyalgia symptoms, spasms, shooting pains, numbness in your legs, cramps, vertigo, dizziness, headaches, tinnitus, joint pain, depression, anxiety attacks, slurred speech, blurred vision, or memory loss — you probably have ASPARTAME DISEASE!”

People were jumping up during the lecture saying, “I’ve got this, is it reversible?”

It is rampant. Some of the speakers at my lecture even were suffering from these symptoms. In one lecture attended by the Ambassador of Uganda, he told us that their sugar industry is adding aspartame! He continued by saying that one of the industry leader’s son could no longer walk due in part by product usage!

We have a very serious problem. Even a stranger came up to Dr. Espisto (one of my speakers) and myself and said, “Could you tell me why so many people seem to be coming down with MS? During a visit to a hospice, a nurse said that six of her friends, who were heavy Diet Coke addicts, had all been diagnosed with MS.”

This is beyond coincidence. Here is the problem. There were congressional hearings when aspartame was included in 100 different products. Since this initial hearing, there have been two subsequent hearings, but to no avail. Nothing has been done. The drug and chemical lobbies have very deep pockets. Now there are over 5,000 products containing this chemical, and the PATENT HAS EXPIRED!

At the time of this first hearing, people were going blind. The methanol in the aspartame converts to formaldehyde in the retina of the eye. Formaldehyde is grouped in the same class of drugs as cyanide and arsenic — DEADLY POISONS! Unfortunately, it just takes longer to quietly kill, but it is killing people and causing all kinds of neurological problems.

Because of the amount of the amino acids, aspartic acid and phenylalanine, Aspartame can change the brain’s chemistry via altering the neurotransmitters there. It can be the reason for severe seizures. This substance changes the dopamine level in the brain. Imagine what this drug does to patients suffering from Parkinson’s Disease.

This drug also causes birth defects.

There is absolutely no reason to take this product. It is NOT A DIET PRODUCT! The Congressional Record said, “It makes you crave carbohydrates and will make you FAT”.

Dr. Roberts stated that when he got patients off aspartame, their average weight loss was 19 pounds per person. The formaldehyde stores in the fat cells, particularly in the hips and thighs.

Aspartame is especially deadly for diabetics. All physicians know what wood alcohol will do to a diabetic. We find that physicians believe that they have patients with retinopathy, when in fact, it is caused by the aspartame. The aspartame keeps the blood sugar level out of control, causing many patients to go into a coma. Unfortunately, many have died.

People were telling us at the Conference of the American College of Physicians, that they had relatives that switched from saccharin to an aspartame product and how that relative had eventually gone into a coma. Their physicians could not get the blood sugar levels under control. Thus, the patients suffered acute memory loss and eventually coma and death.

Memory loss is due to the fact that aspartic acid and phenylalanine are neurotoxic without the other amino acids found in protein- Thus it goes past the blood brain barrier and deteriorates the neurons of the brain.

Dr. Russell Blaylock, neurosurgeon, said, “The ingredients stimulates the neurons of the brain to death, causing brain damage of varying degrees.

Dr. Blaylock has written a book entitled, “EXCITOTOXINS: THE TASTE THAT KILLS” (Health Press 1-800-643-2665). Dr. H.J. Roberts, diabetic specialist and world expert on aspartame poisoning, has also written a book entitled, “DEFENSE AGAINST ALZHEIMER’S DISEASE” (1-800-814-9800). Dr. Roberts tells how aspartame poisoning is escalating Alzheimer’s Disease, and indeed it is.

As the hospice nurse told me, women are being admitted at 30 years of age with Alzheimer’s Disease. Dr. Blaylock and Dr. Roberts will be writing a position paper with some case histories and will post it on the Internet. According to the Conference of the American College of Physicians, “We are talking about a plague of neurological diseases caused by this deadly poison.”

Dr. Roberts realized what was happening when aspartame was first marketed. He said, “his diabetic patients presented memory loss, confusion, and severe vision loss”.

At the Conference of the American College of Physicians, doctors admitted that they did not know. They had wondered why seizures were rampant (the phenylalanine in aspartame breaks down the seizure threshold and depletes serotonin, which causes manic depression, panic attacks, rage and violence).

Just before the Conference, I received a FAX from Norway, asking for a possible antidote for this poison because they are experiencing so many problems in their country. This “poison” is now available in 90 PLUS countries worldwide. Fortunately, we had speakers and ambassadors at the Conference from different nations who have pledged their help. We ask that you help too. Print this article out and warn everyone you know.

Take anything that contains aspartame back to the store. Take the “NO ASPARTAME TEST” and send us your case history.

I assure you that Monsanto, the creator of aspartame, knows how deadly it is. They fund the American Diabetes Association, American Dietetic Association, Congress, and the Conference of the American College of Physicians.

The New York Times, on November 15, 1996, ran an article on how the American Dietetic Association takes money from the food industry to endorse their products. Therefore, they cannot criticize any additives or tell about their link to Monsanto.

How bad is this? We told a mother who had a child on NutraSweet to get off the product. The child was having grand mal seizures every day. The mother called her physician, who called the ADA, who told the doctor not to take the child off the NutraSweet. We are still trying to convince the mother that the aspartame is causing the seizures. Every time we get someone off of aspartame, the seizures stop. If the baby dies, you know whose fault it is, and what we are up against.

There are 92 documented symptoms of aspartame, from coma to death. The majority of them are all neurological, because the aspartame destroys the nervous system. Aspartame Disease is partially the cause to what is behind some of the mystery of the Desert Storm health problems. The burning tongue and other problems discussed in over 60 cases can be directly related to the consumption of an aspartame product. Several thousand pallets of diet drinks were shipped to the Desert Storm troops. (Remember heat can liberate the methanol from the aspartame at 86 degrees F). Diet drinks sat in the 120 degree F. Arabian sun for weeks at a time on pallets. The service men and women drank them all day long. All of their symptoms are identical to aspartame poisoning.

Dr. Roberts says “consuming aspartame at the time of conception can cause birth defects”.

The phenylalanine concentrates in the placenta, causing mental retardation, according to Dr. Louis Elsas, Pediatrician Professor – Genetics, at Emory University in his testimony before Congress. In the original lab tests, animals developed brain tumors (phenylalanine breaks down into DXP, a brain tumor agent). When Dr. Espisto was lecturing on aspartame, one physician in the audience, a neurosurgeon, said, “when they remove brain tumors, they have found high levels of aspartame in them”.

Stevia, a sweet food, NOT AN ADDITIVE, which helps in the metabolism of sugar, which would be ideal for diabetics, has now been approved as a dietary supplement by the FDA. For years, the FDA has outlawed this sweet food because of their loyalty to Monsanto.

If it says “SUGAR FREE” on the label — DO NOT EVEN THIN K ABOUT IT!

Senator Howard Metzenbaum wrote a bill that would have warned all infants, pregnant mothers and children of the dangers of aspartame. The bill would have also instituted independent studies on the problems existing in the population (seizures, changes in brain chemistry, changes in neurological and behavioral symptoms). It was killed by the powerful drug and chemical lobbies, letting loose the hounds of disease and death on an unsuspecting public.

Since the Conference of the American College of Physicians, we hope to have the help of some world leaders. Again, please help us too. There are a lot of people out there who must be warned, *Please* let them know this information.

Life Sci 1999;65(13):PL157-60

Comments on the purported generation of formaldehyde and adduct formation from the sweetener aspartame.

Tephly TR

Department of Pharmacology, The University of Iowa, Iowa City 52242, USA.

A recent paper by Trocho et al. (1) describes experiments meant to show that formaldehyde adducts are formed when rats are administered the sweetener aspartame. These authors assume that the methanol carbon of aspartame generates formaldehyde which then forms adducts with protein, DNA, and RNA. Doses employed range widely. In this letter, studies which have been published previously and which were not cited by these authors are reviewed in order to put into perspective the disposition of methanol and formaldehyde in monkeys and humans, species relevant to the toxicity of methanol and its toxic metabolite, formic acid.

Formaldehyde derived from dietary aspartame binds to tissue components in vivo.

Trocho C, Pardo R, Rafecas I, Virgili J, Remesar X, Fernandez-Lopez JA, Alemany M

Departament de Bioquimica i Biologia Molecular, Facultat de Biologia, Universitat de Barcelona, Spain.

Adult male rats were given an oral dose of 10 mg/kg aspartame 14C-labelled in the methanol carbon. At timed intervals of up to 6 hours, the radioactivity in plasma and several organs was investigated. Most of the radioactivity found (>98% in plasma, >75% in liver) was bound to protein. Label present in liver, plasma and kidney was in the range of 1-2% of total radioactivity administered per g or mL, changing little with time. Other organs (brown and white adipose tissues, muscle, brain, cornea and retina) contained levels of label in the range of 1/12 to 1/10th of that of liver. In all, the rat retained, 6 hours after administration about 5% of the label, half of it in the liver. The specific radioactivity of tissue protein, RNA and DNA was quite uniform. The protein label was concentrated in amino acids, different from methionine, and largely coincident with the result of protein exposure to labelled formaldehyde. DNA radioactivity was essentially in a single different adduct base, different from the normal bases present in DNA. The nature of the tissue label accumulated was, thus, a direct consequence of formaldehyde binding to tissue structures. The administration of labelled aspartame to a group of cirrhotic rats resulted in comparable label retention by tissue components, which suggests that liver function (or its defect) has little effect on formaldehyde formation from aspartame and binding to biological components. The chronic treatment of a series of rats with 200 mg/kg of non-labelled aspartame during 10 days resulted in the accumulation of even more label when given the radioactive bolus, suggesting that the amount of formaldehyde adducts coming from aspartame in tissue proteins and nucleic acids may be cumulative. It is concluded that aspartame consumption may constitute a hazard because of its contribution to the formation of formaldehyde adducts.

Am Fam Physician 1989 Feb;39(2):201-6

Clinical safety of aspartame.

Yost DA

University of Arizona College of Medicine, Tucson.

Aspartame is a synthetic sweetener commonly used in soft drinks and many foods. Even with high doses, the metabolites of this sweetener do not accumulate in toxic amounts. To date, no definite symptom complex has been connected with aspartame, and it is considered safe for use in all populations, including diabetics, phenylketonuric heterozygotes and pregnant women.

J Toxicol Environ Health 1981 Feb;7(2):281-90

Blood methanol concentrations in normal adult subjects administered abuse doses of aspartame.

Stegink LD, Brummel MC, McMartin K, Martin-Amat G, Filer LJ Jr, Baker GL, Tephly TR

Blood methanol concentrations were measured in 30 normal adult subjects administered aspartame, a dipeptide methyl ester. The doses studied included the 99th percentile of projected daily ingestion (34 mg/kg body weight) and three doses considered to be in the abuse range (100, 150, and 200 mg/kg body weight). Methanol concentrations were below the level of detection (0.4 mg/dl) in the blood of the 12 normal subjects who ingested aspartame at 34 mg/kg. They were significantly elevated (p less than or equal to 0 .001) after ingestion of each abuse dose, with the mean peak blood methanol concentrations and the areas under the blood methanol concentration-time curve increasing in proportion to dose. Mean (+/- SD) peak blood methanol concentrations were 1.27 +/- 0.48 mg/dl at the 100 mg/kg dose, 2.14 +/- 0.35 mg/dl at the 150 mg/kg dose, and 2.58 +/- 0.78 mg/dl at the 200 mg/kg dose. Blood methanol concentrations returned to predosing levels by 8 h after administration of the 100 mg/kg dose. Methanol was still detected in the blood 8 h after the subjects had ingested aspartame at 150 or 200 mg/kg. Blood formate analyses were carried out in the 6 subjects who ingested aspartame at 200 mg/kg, since recent studies indicate that the toxic effects of methanol are due to formate accumulation. No significant increase in blood formate concentrations over predosing concentrations was noted. No changes were noted in any of the blood chemistry profile parameters measured 24 h after aspartame ingestion, compared to values noted before administration. Similarly, no differences were noted in ophthalmologic examinations carried out before and after aspartame loading.

Conn Med 1989 Jul;53(7):395-400

Aspartame: clinical update.

Potenza DP, el-Mallakh RS

Since the introduction of aspartame into the American food supply in 1981, it has grown to become the most widely used and accepted artificial sweetener. However, recent published and unpublished reports of headaches, seizures, blindness, and cognitive and behavioral changes with long-term, high-dose aspartame may be cause for concern. Physician awareness of the present clinical and research status of aspartame is important.

Food Chem Toxicol 1986 Mar;24(3):187-9

Serum methanol concentrations in rats and in men after a single dose of aspartame.

Davoli E, Cappellini L, Airoldi L, Fanelli R

Serum methanol concentrations were measured in rats and in humans given oral aspartame. The dose given to rats was the FDA’s projected 99th percentile daily intake for humans, assuming aspartame were to replace all sucrose sweeteners in the diet (34 mg/kg). Four male adult volunteers each received 500 mg, equivalent to 6-8.7 mg/kg, which is approximately the FDA’s estimate of mean daily human consumption. Both treatments caused a rise in serum methanol. In rats the mean peak value was 3.1 mg/litre 1 hr after administration; serum methanol returned to endogenous values 4 hr after treatment. In the men, the mean rise over endogenous values was 1.06 mg/litre after 45 min. Two hours after treatment, serum methanol had returned to basal levels. The temporary serum methanol increase showed peak values within the range of individual basal levels.

Nippon Hoigaku Zasshi 1990 Jun;44(3):205-11

The movement of blood formaldehyde in methanol intoxication. II. The movement of blood formaldehyde and its metabolism in the rabbit.

Matsumoto K, Moriya F, Nanikawa R

Department of Legal Medicine, Okayama University Medical School.

The movement of blood formaldehyde in rabbits that were intoxicated with methanol has been investigated by simple headspace gas chromatography-mass spectrometry for the microdetermination of formaldehyde in the blood. When methanol alone was administered to rabbits orally, formaldehyde could not be detected in the blood. Further, in an experiment on the metabolism of methanol in vitro, formaldehyde was not detected in specimen samples but formate was. In contrast, when methanol was orally administered to rabbits that had been pretreated with diethyldithiocarbamate (DDC), an aldehyde dehydrogenase (ALDH) inhibitor, 17 to 33 microM of formaldehyde were detected in the blood 4 hours later. However, formaldehyde was not detected in the blood when methanol was orally administered to rabbits that had been pretreated with pyrazole, an alcohol dehydrogenase (ADH) inhibitor. After rabbits were given an intravenous administration of formaldehyde, and on the addition of formaldehyde to a rabbit liver homogenate and blood, the formaldehyde in both instances was metabolized rapidly. Formaldehyde that was not metabolized within 10 to 15 minutes, however, bound to the tissue proteins. Therefore, according to the results of this study, formaldehyde was seen to be rapidly metabolized to formate without accumulating in the blood or binding to the tissue proteins. Formaldehyde thus appears to have little influence on the symptoms of methanol poisoning.

Arch Intern Med 1989 Oct;149(10):2318-24

Safety of long-term large doses of aspartame.

Leon AS, Hunninghake DB, Bell C, Rassin DK, Tephly TR

Division of Epidemiology, School of Public Health, University of Minnesota, Minneapolis.

Safety of long-term administration of 75 mg/kg of aspartame per day was evaluated with the use of a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled, parallel-group design in 108 male and female volunteers aged 18 to 62 years. Subjects received either aspartame or placebo in capsule form three times daily for 24 weeks. No persistent changes over time were noted in either group in vital signs; body weight; results of standard laboratory tests; fasting blood levels of aspartame’s constituent amino acids (aspartic acid and phenylalanine), other amino acids, and methanol; or blood formate levels and 24-hour urinary excretion of formate. There also were no statistically significant differences between groups in the number of subjects experiencing symptoms or in the number of symptoms per subject. These results further document the safety of the long-term consumption of aspartame at doses equivalent to the amount of aspartame in approximately 10 L of beverage per day.