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Aspartame is an artificial, non-saccharide sweetener used as a sugar substitute in some foods and beverages. In the European Union, it is codified as E951. Aspartame has been extremely controversial since its approval for use by several European countries in the 1980s. A 1996 report first suggested a link between aspartame and an increase in the number of diagnosed brain tumors.

Now, in a comprehensive Nurses’ Health Study and the Health Professionals Follow-Up study for a period of 22 years of 77,218 women and 47,810 men, showed that one 12-fl oz. can of diet soda a day leads to:

· 42% higher leukemia risk in men and women.

· 102% higher multiple myeloma risk in men only.

· 31% non-Hodgkin lymphoma risk in men only

Apart from its sheer size, what makes this study superior to previous studies is the detail in which aspartame intake was assessed. Every two years, each participant was given a detailed dietary questionnaire, and they had their diets reassessed every four years.

Aspartame is found in over 6,000 products, more frequently in diet and sugar-free foods. Below are some example products with this sweetener:

· Chewing gum

· Laxatives

· Yogurt

· Coffee

· Breath mints

· Pasteurized milk

· Over-the-counter drugs

TAKEAWAY: Avoid artificial sweeteners or products with Aspartame. Use natural alternatives like jiggery, honey or agave.

Author: TxNaturalPediatrics

By training, I am a American Board Certified Pediatrician. But in my younger years I grew up with natural alternatives. As a mom I have tried to incorporate both for my kids and it has worked wonders. And finally, as I am studying natural & alternative medicines, I realize the beauty and wisdom of living closer to earth. Hence in my practice I integrate both...for acute ailments I follow American Academy of Pediatrics recommendation but for simple and/or chronic conditions I prefer natural alternatives. In western training we were raised to think that "health is the absence of symptoms and problems". But eastern sensibilities has educated me that "Health is state that allows one to use the full capabilities of their body, mind and intellect. Therefore, healthy living is a balanced state of well being: physically, mentally, socially and spiritually." This implies that healing is not a "one-pill-fits-all", but a personalized experience.

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