ASPARTAME RENAMED ~ AMINOSWEET ~
NOW MARKETED AS A ‘NATURAL’ SWEETENER!
WARNING! Read labels before buying foods with the name Phenylalanine. I will go one step further ~ if you need to bring along a chemistry book to the store in order to understand the ingredients on the labels ~ DO NOT BUY IT!
It was created as an anti-ulcer pharmaceutical drug, but the chemist discovered it had a sweet taste, so the drug company switched its application to the FDA from a drug to a food. It was none other than Donald Rumsfeld, who was the CEO of Searle who pushed for Aspartame to be sold on the market in 1985. If that name sounds familiar, you’re right; he is the same Donald Rumsfeld, former U.S. Secretary of Defense who served under George W. Bush.
He is a perfect example of someone taking advantage of the “revolving door” between our government and corporations.
Phenylalanine is an essential amino acid (that is, an amino acid which our bodies cannot make and which we must obtain from our diet). It is also one of the amino acids which is used to make aspartame. Phenylalanine is found in all protein-containing foods including milk, cheese, eggs, meat and fish.
This label is there to help people with a rare inherited genetic disorder called phenylketonuria (PKU). These people cannot metabolise phenylalanine from any source and need to follow a strict diet to control their intake of this amino acid.
The disorder affects approximately 1 in 10,000 babies, and is identified by screening shortly after birth. [Source]
I went to the AminoSweet website to see what kind of “spin” they are putting on their repackaged product to entice shoppers to buy their so-called “natural” sweetener and here is their selling point:
AminoSweet aspartame is the low calorie sweetener that tastes just like sugar. It is made from two building blocks of protein just like those found naturally in many everyday foods. Aspartame is digested by the body in exactly the same way as these other protein foods and so does not bring anything new to our diet.
“From a food science perspective, it is difficult to define a food product that is ‘natural’ because the food has probably been processed and is no longer the product of the earth. That said, FDA has not developed a definition for use of the term natural or its derivatives.” [Source]
In June 2013 Ben & Jerry’s Ice Cream and Campbell’s Soup became defendants in class action lawsuits that allege they misrepresented the nature of the ingredients on their product labels. The Campbell’s Soup Company is currently being sued by Florida residents for misrepresenting the genetically modified (GMO) corn in its soup as “natural.”
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