Jump to content

So aspartame...


erithehedgehog

Recommended Posts

Hi guys.

 

I wondered what your view on this is. I would assume, as most of you are probably paleos, that you don't eat artificial sweeteners. I know there are a lot of really dodgy articles on the potential hazards of aspartame consumption all over the web, I just wondered whether you all had a particular opinion on it. Has anyone here found that cutting it out has made a difference to them? My friend has said she feels like a million dollars now, she quit it after a blog poster about the dangers of it. But I'm not sure if it's a placebo effect? I'm pretty sure it's not got any health benefits per se, but how bad is it actually? Does it cause damage? I'm looking for a sound argument here btw, I've seen plenty of blog posts from scare-mongers. Thoughts?  

"I think it was blessed are the cheesemakers."

"What's so special about the cheesemakers?"

"Well obviously it's not meant to be taken literally; it refers to any manufacturers of dairy products."

 

EriTheHedgehog, level 0 Wood elf. Druid at heart, training with the adventurers.

STR 0|DEX 0|STA 0|CON 0|WIS 0|CHA 0

Challenge 1: http://rebellion.nerdfitness.com/index.php?/topic/42099-watch-out-world-eris-coming-to-getcha/

Link to comment

My opinion is based on the following: personal experience and my current undertaking of earning a bachelor's in biology.

 

I don't believe that restricting your diet of aspartame would have any actual physical effect unless you've had an incredible problem with an addiction before doing so. Taking in aspartame usually doesn't have a direct effect (like alcohol or a drug) would have, unless taken in huge quantities, nor does it normally have any long-term effect that would be noticable. So my belief is that the answer to your friend feeling like a million bucks is mostly found in placebo.

 

With that said, it's still very important to acknowledge that there are several studies that show an increased risk of numerous things being connected to the intake of aspartame. The most notable of which is cancer. This is however a controversal topic and it's difficult to hand out facts when studies are scarce and the frequency at which the same thing has been tested several times is very low.

 

Personally, I don't take in any aspartame in my diet if I can avoid it. Mostly because I'm not afraid of sugar, and because of that I think synthetic substances is nothing but a negative addition to my life. A little bit of sugar will never kill me, nor drastically make my diet less healthy or bad for me (of course depending on who you ask, but these are my opinions). If I want a bit of sugar in my coffee I would much rather use 'real' sugar than anything synthesised or artificial.

Chubby Half Elf - Adventurer


Level 0


STR: 0 | DEX: 0 | STA: 0 | CON: 0 | WIS: 0 | CHA: 0


Challenge 1 | 2 | 3

Link to comment

That's very interesting, it's nice to hear a response from someone with a background in biology. I know it's somewhat controversial, and certainly in the UK, there are a lot of articles about it in national newspapers, which makes it very hard to separate fact from fiction. I'm still going to cut it out, if only through the paleo idea of not eating processed food.

"I think it was blessed are the cheesemakers."

"What's so special about the cheesemakers?"

"Well obviously it's not meant to be taken literally; it refers to any manufacturers of dairy products."

 

EriTheHedgehog, level 0 Wood elf. Druid at heart, training with the adventurers.

STR 0|DEX 0|STA 0|CON 0|WIS 0|CHA 0

Challenge 1: http://rebellion.nerdfitness.com/index.php?/topic/42099-watch-out-world-eris-coming-to-getcha/

Link to comment

Speaking as a pharmacy student (same as wondertje, this is purely an opinion based on what I've read):

 

One of the biggest controversies with aspartame is that when metabolized by your body, one end product is formaldehyde. Which sounds scary. However, your body is equipped to break down formaldehyde that it doesn't need into formic acid (typically within in seconds). This then either gets removed with urine, or is broken down into carbon dioxide and water.

 

Where you typically run into problems is with a certain genetic disease where you cannot break down one of the components of aspartame, phenylalanine (hence why you see warning labels on products containing aspartame about phenylalanine. Potentially deadly to those with the condition). On the other hand, if you start consuming disgusting amounts of aspartame you will have problems. But the chances of that happening are quite slim. Well, I don't know you, but I sure hope you don't have access to huge amounts of the stuff. ;)

 

Anyway, some people prefer to cut it out for purity's sake. Such as myself. But as a drink/food additive, in my opinion, you won't be damaging yourself.

Link to comment

That is nice to hear. I'm pleased that I've not done any lasting damage to myself through my years of sweetening stuff. I am starting to learn to like coffee and tea as they are. ^_^ I'm afraid that although I'm interested in science and stuff, I don't really have a thorough understanding of it all, it's not my field of expertise.

"I think it was blessed are the cheesemakers."

"What's so special about the cheesemakers?"

"Well obviously it's not meant to be taken literally; it refers to any manufacturers of dairy products."

 

EriTheHedgehog, level 0 Wood elf. Druid at heart, training with the adventurers.

STR 0|DEX 0|STA 0|CON 0|WIS 0|CHA 0

Challenge 1: http://rebellion.nerdfitness.com/index.php?/topic/42099-watch-out-world-eris-coming-to-getcha/

Link to comment

Science be damned, my wife gets instant migraines from aspartame that last for hours.  A sip of the wrong soda, even a piece of gum will do it.  She's never had any addiction problems, but does have significant chemical allergies, formaldehyde being among them.

 

On top of all that, fake sugars have a nasty bitter aftertaste, even stevia. 

Searching the world for a cure for my wanderlust.

Link to comment

I don't think I've ever come across any scientific evidence that artificial sweeteners are dangerous (though as jfreaksho mentioned, some individuals have poor reactions to it - but the same can be said for bananas or eggs).

 

But there are other considerations for me with artificial sweeteners. One is that they tend to perpetuate our need for all of our food to taste super sweet. Another is that if I'm drinking diet sodas, I may not be drinking calories but I'm also not drinking water. And I've generally found that I personally do better with food overall (including being able to really enjoy my food, crave real food not pure sugar or salt, and eat mindfully with reasonable portions) if I reduce processed foods in my diet. 

Link to comment

The European Union just recently finished a research into aspartame because of the large number of people saying how bad it is, without much science to back them up. Their result was that unless you get in an insane amount of aspartame on a daily basis there isn't any scientific proof it's bad for you. The insane amount was (from the top of my head) something like 12 litres of coke a day, every day. 

 

http://www.efsa.europa.eu/en/topics/topic/aspartame.htm

LEVEL 3 Human Scout - obsessive smiley user 


 


"That's the best part, the outside is new, but now it reflects what's already in you" - Legally blonde the musical

Link to comment

Okiedokie. =) Some mixed reactions here, all perfectly valid. I reckon it's probably, as previously stated, that some people have bad reactions to it, and I like the sentiment that whilst it doesn't harm everyone, it does mean that if you're drinking diet soda, you're not drinking water, which has to be better for you really.

"I think it was blessed are the cheesemakers."

"What's so special about the cheesemakers?"

"Well obviously it's not meant to be taken literally; it refers to any manufacturers of dairy products."

 

EriTheHedgehog, level 0 Wood elf. Druid at heart, training with the adventurers.

STR 0|DEX 0|STA 0|CON 0|WIS 0|CHA 0

Challenge 1: http://rebellion.nerdfitness.com/index.php?/topic/42099-watch-out-world-eris-coming-to-getcha/

Link to comment

The European Union just recently finished a research into aspartame because of the large number of people saying how bad it is, without much science to back them up. Their result was that unless you get in an insane amount of aspartame on a daily basis there isn't any scientific proof it's bad for you. The insane amount was (from the top of my head) something like 12 litres of coke a day, every day. 

 

http://www.efsa.europa.eu/en/topics/topic/aspartame.htm

 

I'm not saying that the EFSA (it wasn't the EU) are wrong, nor that their data is bad. However they didn't actually conduct any research (as far as I've found and understood it), but what they did was call out for data already done, and they put it all together and wrote a review article. It's a common way to simply put together a lot of data to one coherent source of information. important to know is though that without actually reading the articles they link to (which are way over 100 of them), we can't know which parts they chose to write in their review and thus build their opinion on.

 

Again, not saying they're wrong, but it's never bad to keep a sceptical mind - especially when there is government or similar authority (EU) power involved in financing the project.

Chubby Half Elf - Adventurer


Level 0


STR: 0 | DEX: 0 | STA: 0 | CON: 0 | WIS: 0 | CHA: 0


Challenge 1 | 2 | 3

Link to comment

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

×
×
  • Create New...

Important Information

New here? Please check out our Privacy Policy and Community Guidelines