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Dangerous Link Found Between Aspartame and Alzheimer’s

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Ask most public health agencies or nutritionists in America and they will recommend to you that no calorie or low calorie artificial sweetener as an acceptable alternative to sugar. This type of bad advice can have some serious repercussions for those who blindly follow it.

Your health is affected in all sorts of nasty ways whenever you use artificial sweeteners of any kind, but aspartame is perhaps the worst of this group, with a long list of studies showing that it has numerous harmful health effects that can range from pre-term delivery to brain damage.

Aspartame is the number one source of complaints when it comes to side effects, according to the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA). Aspartame has more than 10,000 complaints and more than 91 documented systems that are directly related to its consumption. Read more about aspartame and its link to premature death in women.

Even recently, studies have been confirming a long held suspicion that artificial sweeteners are behind the development of Alzheimer’s disease. The main mechanism of harm seems to be methanol toxicity, a frequently ignored problem associated with aspartame.

A recently published, two part article states what many researchers have been saying for years; that methanol acts very differently in animals than in humans.

Mice that were fed methanol showed partial Alzheimer’s symptoms, while rhesus monkeys that were fed a methanol solution of 3 percent developed persistent pathological changes that related to the development of Alzheimer’s. This article expands this investigation to the non-human primate, in this case, rhesus macaque, that showed that the feeding of methanol led to a persistent memory decline in the monkeys that continued longer than the 6 month study.

The presence of amyloid plaque formation in these monkeys showed the vast difference in animal systems used in AD investigations and suggested that the innate defense in mice may have limited previous investigations.

The manufacturers of artificial sweeteners have claimed for years that aspartame is harmless and that there is no link for the health problems that have been reported by so many after ingesting aspartames.

Aspartame mainly consists of aspartic acid and phenylalanine. Phenylalanine is a synthetically modified methyl group, which is what provides that sweet taste. The phenylalanine methyl bond, which is called methyl ester, is rather weak, allowing the methyl part of phenylalanine to break off and form methanol.

Perhaps you have heard that aspartame is harmless because methanol is found in many vegetables and fruits. The difference here is that the methanol is tightly bonded to pectin, which allows it to safely pass through your digestive system. No so for the methanol created by aspartame. It’s not bonded with anything at all, so it can’t easily be removed from your body.

Human beings are the only animals that have no biological mechanism for breaking down methanol into something harmless, such as formic acid. This is why the tests that most studies have done using animals in regards to testing aspartame do not really apply to human beings.

The fact that methyl alcohol is metabolized differently in humans has been known since 1940. In this featured article, rhesus monkeys do not have the same defenses to fight methanol toxicity the mice do. So this means that, basically, almost all animal research that is used to “prove” the point that aspartame is safe is useless.

Methanol acts something like a Trojan horse in humans, allowing the toxic formaldehyde to cause serious problems in some of the body’s most sensitive areas, such as the brain. Certain parts of the body, especially in the linings of the blood vessels, as well as the brain, are loaded with ADH (alcohol dehydrogenase), that converts methanol to formaldehyde. However, since there is no catalase in humans, the formaldehyde won’t get converted into its more harmless form, formic acid. This means that formaldehyde is free to roam your body, causing huge amounts of damage to the body’s tissues.

Methanol poisoning symptoms include: headaches, nausea, dizziness, numbness, memory lapses, weakness, gastrointestinal disturbances, chills, and neuritis. Perhaps the most well-known problems of methanol poisoning are vision problems, retinal damage, blurry vision, and even blindness. Formaldehyde is also a known carcinogen that interferes with DNA replication and can possibly cause birth defects.

As you probably already know, processed foods should be avoided for your best health (find out how to cut out processed food), and now we can add that they should be avoided as a proactive measure against Alzheimer’s. The combination of sugar and refined carbs in the diet promotes Alzheimer’s. We can also add methanol to the list of excellent reasons to avoid processed foods. Many processed foods contain sugar and/or artificial sweeteners.

Canned fruits and veggies, however, should be considered processed foods, as the methanol in these foods becomes unbound from the pectin. At average room temperatures, it will take about one month for 10 percent of methanol to be released, and after 6 months, virtually all the methanol has been released from the pectin. This methanol, and it’s conversion into formaldehyde , along with all foods and beverages that contain aspartame, are the major cause in a wide variety of chronic diseases including multiple sclerosis.

Methanol can easily bypass the blood brain barrier and this causes the destruction of the myelin basic protein, one of the triggers for multiple sclerosis.

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