I just accidentally closed a webpage (and did not find it later) which described that somehow, Aspartame poisoning victims had faults in the vital proteins of their body due to the reaction of Aspartame with some aminoacids. I doubted that this is true.
However, considering the high solubility of Aspartame in the liquids in the body and its digestibility it is feasible for it or one of the related compounds to be causing this symptom. The info that will be shared is welcome.


1 Answer 1


Aspartame is one of the most well studied food additives there is. It seems to be controversial in the same way that evolution is—scientific research is overwhelmingly on the side of the substance being safe to consume, even at very high levels, but a Google search on it brings up things like "Aspartame is, by Far, the Most Dangerous Substance on the Market that is Added To Foods" (from a site trying to sell natural health products). A lot of this comes perhaps from the naturalistic fallacy: aspartame is artificial and thus unsafe. A huge number of regulatory authorities have deemed it safe to consume: FDA, Health Canada, EFSA, FSA, etc.

There is also a good deal of bad biochemistry thrown about: aspartame is metabolized into the two amino acids aspartic acid and phenylalanine, as well as methanol. There have been some hypotheses that aspartic acid intake could induce some amount of toxicity, but experimental evidence is lacking. Methanol, of course, is well known to be toxic. The key is, that aspartame is very sweet and only tiny amounts are added to food. So even drinking enough diet cola to hit the FDA's acceptable daily intake of aspartame (which works out to ~7.5 L), the quantity of methanol consumed is only around 300 mg, and things like fruits are larger sources of methanol in people who drink sane amounts of diet soft drinks.

The one condition in which aspartame is known to do harm at reasonable intake is in people who have phenylketonuria (PKU). This might be what you're thinking of by "faults in the vital proteins of their body". PKU is a genetic disease caused by a defective gene for the enzyme phenylalanine hydroxylase which results in an inability to metabolize phenylalanine correctly; thus, consuming phenylalanine from any source is hazardous to sufferers of the disease.


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