In the world of marketing, the slogan sugar – white death is promoted. Therefore, it is strongly replaced by sweeteners as its better substitutes. Under this sweet name there is, among other things, a substance called aspartame, about which different opinions circulate. So what is the mentioned aspartame and what are the consequences of eating it? In the article below, I will try to answer these questions exactly.
1. Aspartame – what is it?
Aspartame is a sweetener that we can find today practically everywhere. Starting from chewing gums, through sweetened beverages to medicines. It is an agent that does not make insulin, so it can benefit from diabetes. At the same time it is very sweet. Data indicate that 150 to 200 times more than regular sugar.
In addition, for 100 g of the product contains only 4 kcal. It would seem that it is an ideal solution for diabetics and caring people
for figure and bodybuilders. But how is it really? A lot has been written about aspartame, and the results of the research are often contradictory. Let’s look at what the sweetener hidden under the E 951 name is made of.
Aspartame is the technical name of many products – including NutraSweet, Spoonful, Equal. It consists of three naturally occurring substances in our food. The first of these is aspartic acid, which is an endogenous amino acid. We can find it in seeds and vegetable and animal proteins. From aspartic acid, constituting 40% of aspartame, aspartate is formed as a neurotransmitter.
It means that it plays an important role in our body. Facilitates the flow of information between cells in the brain. In addition, it has anabolic properties, because it stimulates the secretion of insulin, glucagon and somatotropin. In excess, however, it can cause death of nerve cells.
The second component is phenylalanine (50% aspartame). Amino acid, which is in turn exogenous. Necessary for the proper functioning of the body. In this case, people with phenylketonuria should be careful. It is a disease that has a genetic basis.
People with phenylketonuria are not able to metabolize phenylalanine, so it accumulates in the brain – it can cause damage and mental retardation. There are studies that show that the intake of aspartame by healthy people in combination with carbohydrates also increases the level of phenylalanine in the brain.
The last substance is methyl alcohol (10%). It is found naturally in fruit, but where it is found in combination with pectin, which makes it harmless. In aspartame, it occurs in a free form. Methanol in our body is metabolized to formic acid and formaldehyde. These two substances accumulate in our body and constitute lethal poison.
Poisoning with methanol can cause blindness, nausea and limb numbness and memory loss. The important thing is that you should not heat aspartame above 30 degrees, because then the release of methyl alcohol already in the product. The permissible daily dose of aspartame according to the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) is 50 mg / kg body weight.
3. Effects of consumption
The effects of eating aspartame are different. What is certain is that it is one of the most controversial sweeteners. Some sources say that it is responsible for the formation of cancer and under no circumstances can it be consumed by pregnant women, because it causes birth defects and birth defects. Others, however, is harmless. It can not be consumed by persons suffering from phenylketonuria.
Let me express my opinion on this matter. Aspartam is located in over 5,000 food products – including drinks, medicines, food, chewing gums. All these products are very heavily processed and do not have a very positive effect on our health, and especially on the figure. Therefore, I avoid everything that is processed. Is it harmful to these products aspartame or not – there is no place for them in the diet that cares about human health.
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