ASPARTAME, an artificial sweetener about 200 times sweeter than sugar, is often used in beverages (eg: diet soft drinks, low-sugar juices and flavoured waters), dairy products (eg: light yoghurt and low-fat flavoured milk), nutrition bars, desserts (eg: sugar-free puddings and gelatins, light ice cream and popsicles), chewing gum, sauces, syrups and condiments. It is also found in tabletop sweeteners (eg: Equal, Canderel and Pal Sweet). Some prescription and over-the-counter medications and chewable vitamins may also contain aspartame. (Food Insight)

Aspartame consists of methyl alcohol, aspartic acid and phenylalanine. Methanol in aspartame is broken to formaldehyde and formic acid. Formaldehyde is a toxic cancer-causing agent that damages neurons in the brain. (Organic Health Food)

Dozens of studies have linked aspartame – the world’s most widely used artificial sweetener – to serious health problems, including cancer, cardiovascular disease, Alzheimer’s disease, seizures, stroke and dementia, as well as negative effects such as intestinal dysbiosis, mood disorders, headaches and migraines. Evidence also links aspartame to weight gain, increased appetite and obesity-related diseases. (U.S. Right To Know)

The US Food and Drug Administration has approved its use since 1981.