Dr. Janet Starr Hull, Alternative Heatlh and Nutrition

Aspartame - Other Sweeteners

Many people want to know what other artificial sweeteners they can safely use instead
of aspartame.
My first recommendation is NOT to use
any chemical
sweeteners at all, but merely use
natural sugars
or learn to adjust to the natural
sweetness of
raw foods themselves.

I have provided a list of alternative artificial sweeteners available on the market
today, even
though I am not recommending their use
over natural
sweeteners. I do recommend them above
nonetheless, as their side effects are
less harmful
to human health.

The best thing to do is avoid all artificial and chemical sweetener substitutes. They
NO food value, trick the body into
thinking it
is eating something sweet, and they have
of harmful toxic side effects. And
remember that
aspartame was discovered as an ulcer
drug, not
a sweetener. Every diet drink you used
to drink
was a dose of medication .

Aspartame Information:
Aspartame Detoxifcation:

Information on Aspartame and Other Chemical Sweeteners: Acesulfame K

Acesulfame Potassium (K) was approved for use by the FDA as a safe artificial sweetener in July,
l988. It
is a derivative of acetoacetic acid.
several potential problems associated with the
use of
acesulfame have been raised. They are based
on animal studies since testing on humans
remains limited.
The findings showed the following:

Acesulfame K stimulates insulin secretion in a dose dependent fashion thereby possibly aggravating
hypoglycemia ("low blood sugar attacks").

Acesulfame K apparently produced lung tumors, breast tumors, rare types of tumors of other organs
(such as
the thymus gland), several forms of leukemia
and chronic
respiratory disease in several rodent studies,
when less than maximum doses were given.
According to
the Center for Science in the Public Interest,
it was
petitioned on August 29, l988 for a stay of
by the FDA because of "significant doubt"
about its

Dr. H.J. Roberts, Aspartame (NutraSweet) Is It Safe?, Charles Press, page 283/84.

Aspartame (commonly misspelled as aspertame)

Aspartame, a dipeptide of aspartic acid and a methyl ester of phenylalanine, is approved for use in
products and is being used increasingly in
tablet and sugar-free formulations. Labels for
prescription and nonprescription products must
the phenylalanine content. The major
consideration in
the use of aspartame in children is in
patients with
autosomal recessive phenylketonuria. Although
do not appear to have clinically significant
in phenylalanine after ingestion of even large
(equivalent to 24 12-oz cans of diet
beverages), homozygotes
with strict dietary restrictions should avoid
Children without dietary restrictions could
safely ingest
10 mg/kg/d. [37-40]. Dietary consumption of
aspartame is typically less than 5
young children, however, could ingest
considerably more.
For example, a 2-year-old child weighing 12 kg
17 mg/kg from drinking one 12-oz can of diet
soda and
one serving of a sweetened product (eg,
cereal, pudding,
gelatin, or frozen dessert).

Headache is the most common adverse side effect attributed to aspartame but is seldom confirmed by
double-blind challenge. Up to 11% of patients
with chronic
migraine headaches reported headaches
triggered by aspartame;
however, a double-blind challenge with three
doses of
10 mg/kg given every 2 hours triggered no more
than did placebos in patients with vascular
believed to be exacerbated by aspartame. A
small, double-blind
4-week trial showed an increase in frequency
of headaches
after ingestion of 1200 mg/d, indicating that a
challenge period may be necessary.

In anecdotal reports, aspartame has been linked to various neuropsychiatric disorders, including
attacks, mood changes, visual hallucinations,
episodes, and isolated dizziness. A small,
crossover study of patients with major
depression revealed
a higher incidence of reactions in these
patients compared
with nondepressed volunteers after
administration of
30 mg/kg for 7 days; symptoms included
headache, nervousness,
dizziness, memory impairment, nausea, temper
and depression. None of these conditions has
been rigorously
proven to be caused by aspartame, but
carefully conducted
double-blind challenges may be indicated in
with histories that suggest aspartame as a
cause. Patients
with underlying mitral valve prolapse or
affective disorders
may be at increased risk for neuropsychiatric
several studies have shown that individuals
psychiatric or seizure disorders do not
these effects.

Seizures have been reported via passive surveillance data collected by the FDA and in a few case
A recent analysis of FDA reports showed 41
cases of
rechallenge with a temporal relationship to
consumption. Most seizures occurred in
patients who
had an acceptable dietary intake, except for a
who ingested up to 57 mg/kg of aspartame.
is generally considered safe for children with
One study found increased spike-wave
discharges in children
with untreated absence seizures after a high
dose of
aspartame and suggested that children with
poorly controlled
absence seizures avoid aspartame.


Foods containing saccharin no longer carry a label stating that the "use of this product may be
to your health ...contains saccharin which has
determined to cause cancer in laboratory
animals." This
warning was lifted in 2001 by the American FDA
as saccharin
no longer has been connected to cancer in
human beings.

Saccharin may be present in drugs in substantial amounts. Ingestion of the recommended daily dosage of
aspirin or acetaminophen tablets in a
school-age child
would provide approximately the same amount of
contained in one can of a diet soft drink.
This amount,
relative to the body weight of a child younger
9 or 10 years, ingested for prolonged periods
be considered as "heavy use," as defined in a
large-scale FDA/National Cancer Institute
study. In this study, heavy use of artificial
was associated with a significantly increased
risk for
the development of bladder cancer. An
independent review
of this study concluded that there was no
An investigation of saccharin performed by the
Medical Association in 1985 concluded that
bladder changes
were species-specific, were confined to the
second generation
of male rats, and occurred in association with
doses (equivalent to several hundred cans of
diet soft
drink per day). The no-effect level was
equivalent to
500 mg/kg/d.[68,69] Saccharin is not
the presumed mechanism of toxicity is the
binding of
saccharin to urinary proteins (not normally
found in
humans), creating a nidus for the formation of
crystals, which are cytotoxic to bladder

Saccharin is an O-toluene sulfonamide derivative and causes similar dermatologic reactions.
with sulfonamides has been demonstrated;
children with "sulfa" allergy should also
avoid saccharin.
Hypersensitivity can usually be confirmed by a
test for saccharin. In a series of 42 patients
adverse effects resulting from consumption of
in pharmaceutical agents, pruritus and
urticaria were
the most common reactions, followed by eczema,

and prurigo. Other reactions include wheezing, nausea, diarrhea, tongue blisters, tachycardia, fixed
headache, diuresis, and sensory neuropathy.

Ingestion of saccharin-adulterated milk formula by infants was associated with irritability,
insomnia, opisthotonos, and strabismus, which
within 36 hours after ingestion. Two anecdotal
of an accidental overdose in an adult and a
child discussed
reactions of generalized edema, oliguria, and
albuminuria. Because of the paucity of data on
the toxicity
of saccharin in children, the American Medical

Association has recommended limiting the intake of saccharin in young children and pregnant


Splenda, also known as sucralose, is an artificial sweetener, which is a chlorinated sucrose
Facts about this artificial chemical are as

Pre-Approval Research

Pre-approval research showed that sucralose caused shrunken thymus glands (up to 40% shrinkage)
and enlarged
liver and kidneys.

Recent Research

A possible problem with caecal enlargement and renal mineralization has been seen in post approval

Sucralose Breaks Down

Despite the manufacturer's mis-statements, sucralose does break down into small amounts of
a chemical which has not been adequtely tested
in humans.
More importantly, sucralose must break down in
the digestive
system. If it didn't break down and react at
all (as
the manufacturer claims), it would not
on the tongue to provide a sweet taste. The
truth is
that sucralose does break down to some extent
in the
digestive system.

Independent, Long-Term Human Research

None. Manufacturer's "100's of studies" (some of which show hazards) were clearly inadequate and do
not demonstrate
safety in long-term use.

Chlorinated Pesticides

The manufacturer claims that the chlorine added to sucralose is similar to the chlorine atom in
the salt
(NaCl) molecule. That is not the case.
Sucralose may
be more like ingesting tiny amounts of
chlorinated pesticides,
but we will never know without long-term,
human research.


While it is unlikely that sucralose is as toxic as the poisoning people are experiencing from
aspartame, it is clear from the hazards seen
in pre-approval
research and from its chemical structure that
or decades of use may contribute to serious
immunological or neurological disorders.

It is very important that people who have any interest in their health

stay aware from the highly toxic sweetener aspartame and other questionable sweeteners such as
(Splenda), and acesulfame-k (Sunette, Sweet
& Safe,
Sweet One). Please see the extensive resources
for sweeteners
on the Healthier Sweetener Resource List. http://www.holisticmed.com/sweet/


Mark D. Gold mgold@holisticmed.com

Aspartame Toxicity Information Center

35 Inman St., Cambridge, MA 02139 617-497-7843



Another sweetener, stevioside, is championed by natural-foods advocates in the United States and is used in
countries, most notably Japan. Stevioside
comes from
the leaves of the stevia plant (Stevia
rebaudiana Bertoni),
a perennial shrub of the Asteraceae
(Compositae) family
native to Brazil and Paraguay. Stevia contains
glycosides, mainly stevioside; but also
A, B, C, D, and E; dulcoside A; and

steviolbioside. Stevioside has a slight bitter aftertaste and provides 250 to 300 times the sweetness of
It is stable to 200°C (392°F), but it is not
fermentable and does not act in browning

In the 1970s, the Japanese government approved the plant for use in food. Japanese food
processors use
stevioside in a wide range of foods: pickled
dried seafood, soy sauce and miso, beverages,
gums, baked goods and cereals, yogurt, ice
cream, and
as a tabletop sweetener. In salty
applications, stevioside
modifies the harshness of sodium chloride.
it with other natural and synthetic sweeteners
taste and functionality.

FDA considers stevia leaves and stevioside as unapproved, non-GRAS food additives. In 1992, the American
Products Association (AHPA) petitioned the FDA
to declare
stevia as GRAS, citing historical usage and
to numerous toxicology studies conducted in
Japan and
other countries. The FDA rejected AHPA's
petition, contending
inadequate evidence to approve the product.
The agency
does allow the herb to be used in dietary
as covered by DSHEA (Dietary Supplement Health
and Education


From the manufacturer's web page.

It looks like sugar, tastes like sugar, cooks like sugar... well technically, it is sugar. But
it's sugar
with almost no calories. It's 100-percent
natural -
not synthesized, unlike other "sweeteners"
that are
chemically synthesized or derived from sugar,
is a naturally occurring sugar. And SPHERIX
has discovered
and patented a way to make it available for
use as a
food additive as well as for a variety of
other uses.

It's Tagatose, the only sweetener that tastes, looks, feels, and performs like table sugar. Tagatose
can supply
a major need for baked goods, ice cream,
chewing gum, and other food products that
can't be met
by low bulk of high-intensity sweeteners. And
it's safe,
with over ten years of safety research and
consultancies and world-renowned scientists
the product. Scientifically known as
D-tagatose, Tagatose
occurs naturally in some dairy products and
other foods.
Our patented production process starts from
whey, a
dairy by-product. Tagatose has been determined
to be
a Generally Recognized As Safe (GRAS)
substance in the
U.S., with the FDA affirming the green light
for the
product with its "no objection" opinion,
its use in foods and beverages. Tagatose has
also been
determined GRAS for use in cosmetics and
as well as in drugs.

About Tagatose: IS IT SAFE OR NOT?


April 16, 2001

Washington Post

Page E01

Jerry Knight


Last week was, according to this story, a long time coming for Gilbert Levin, the 76-year-old
chairman of
Biospherics Inc. After almost a decade of
study, a panel
of medical experts declared that an obscure
form of sugar that Levin has latched onto is
safe to
use in food.

The story says that Biospherics has collected $2.5 million by licensing rights to make the sugar
to a Scandinavian
dairy cooperative, but the food safety panel's
has the potential to open the spigot on what
could become
a gushing stream of royalty revenue on every
pound of
the product that goes into any food.

It'll be at least two years before consumers can eat anything sweetened with the stuff, but
investors didn't
wait to buy Biospherics stock. The story also
there is no way of predicting whether food
will be as excited as Levin is about the
sweetener called
tagatose. It's a natural product, a chemical
of familiar sugars such as sucrose, fructose,
and lactose. Tagatose, like table sugar, is a
crystal; it is 90 percent as sweet as ordinary
but has one-third the calories.

Tagatose could be the product that converts Biospherics into what most people have always thought it
was: a
biotech company.

The story goes on to say that tagatose is most closely related to fructose, the sugar that's in
honey, fruits
and corn, Levin explained in an interview
Friday. The
chemical formulas for fructose and tagatose
are identical.
The two molecules look the same, but in
tagatose, one
atom of carbon juts off to the left of the
main structure
instead of off to right as it does in

Left-leaning sugars have fascinated Levin for more than 20 years. He first got interested in one
that is
a mirror image of table sugar. Think of the
sugar molecule
as a coil that curls around to the right. A
sugar molecule that turns to the left was
Levin's first
interest. Levo-sugar it's called, for

Levo-sugar is a confusing chemical to the human body. To the tongue, it tastes just like regular
sugar. But
the body has never swallowed left- handed
sugar and
can't digest it.

Levin spent the better part of the 1980s tinkering with left-handed sugar, attracting a lot of
to Biospherics stock, but ultimately leaving a
bad taste
in the mouths of investors. The problem was
that the
company was never able to find a way to make
sugar at a low enough price to give the
company a high
stock price. Every once in a while,
Biospherics would
announce some development in sweetener
research, the
stock would jump, and then it would drift back

The pattern continued in the 1990s after Levin shelved levo-sugar and shifted his team of researchers
to tagatose.

The result has been an erratic stock with poor long-term performance. A $100 investment in Biospherics
on Dec.
31, 1995, had grown in value to $151 at the
end of 1998,
but by the end of last year was back to $111.
As a benchmark,
a $100 investment in a Standard & Poor's
index mutual fund was worth $232 at the end of

The story also goes on to say that unlike drugs, foods don't have to be tested on humans, Levin
But Biospherics obtained a Maryland Industrial
grant to finance human studies at the
University of
Maryland Medical School, which produced
promising results
for potential use by diabetics.

Diabetics can eat foods sweetened with tagatose without getting the unhealthful changes in their blood
levels that are caused by eating sugar.

The studies did, however, find that patients who consumed large amounts of tagatose experienced
distress, including diarrhea, nausea and
The intestinal problems apparently result
because most
tagatose passes through the digestive tract
being absorbed -- a key reason why it's lower
in calories.

Those lower-bowel symptoms weren't a problem for most people who ate small amounts of the sweetener
and Levin
said he does not expect the reaction to be a
for the uses Arla has in mind for tagatose.


Also, preliminary reports exist of the
potential utility
of agents thatimpede dietary carbohydrate
Tagatose is one of the agents in this class


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