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Islander
09-28-09, 10:01 PM
Friday, 25 September 2009

Scientists are to assess whether the artificial sweetener aspartame causes health problems in people unusually sensitive to it.
Expert advice is that aspartame - found in more than 4,000 products - is safe to consume.
However, a number of people have reported sensitivity to the product including headaches, dizziness, vomiting, diarrhoea and fatigue.
The University of Hull study is funded by the Food Standards Agency (FSA).
Aspartame, 150 times sweeter than sugar, is found in products such as diet soft drinks, cereal bars, yogurts and chewing gum.
There have long been concerns that the sweetener is linked to a raft of health problems, including a greater risk of cancer, fertility issues, nausea, double vision and an effect on appetite.
However, after reviewing the available scientific literature, both the FSA and the European Food Safety Authority decided there was no firm evidence of any impact on health, and ruled that aspartame was safe to consume.
Professor Stephen Atkin, who will lead the new research, said: "This study is not to determine whether aspartame can be consumed safely; this has already been established, but rather to see whether certain people are sensitive to it."
The Hull team hope their work will lead to a larger international study to pin down the issue once and for all.



Body chemistry
Professor Atkin also hopes to secure funding to analyse the chemical breakdown of aspartame in the body.
The sweetener can be broken down to produce methanol and formaldehyde, both of which have been previously linked to cancer.
However, it is not clear whether this process takes place in the body, or, if it does, whether the metabolites are absorbed into the blood in sufficient quantity to produce any biological effect.
Andrew Wadge, Chief Scientist at the Food Standards Agency said: "The study will address consumer concerns, including anecdotal reports that have linked a range of conditions to aspartame.
'The Agency's view remains that aspartame can be consumed safely and we are not recommending any changes to its current use.
"However, we know that some people consider that they react badly to consuming this sweetener so we think it is important to increase our knowledge about what is happening."
One hundred people will take part in the Hull study, half of who have complained of side effects from aspartame.
The study is expected to take 18 months.
At present the Acceptable Daily Intake (ADI) for aspartame is set by the European Commission's Scientific Committee on Food (SCF) at 40 milligrams per kilogram of body weight.
An adult would have to drink about 14 cans a day of diet soft drink, or consume about 80 sachets of sweetener to reach this amount.

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/health/8266707.stm

Islander
09-28-09, 10:02 PM
Trouble is, it's not just in soda or packets—it's in soups, baked goods, salad dressing, catsup...everything!

Aaltrude
09-29-09, 03:16 AM
Trouble is, it's not just in soda or packets—it's in soups, baked goods, salad dressing, catsup...everything!

Yep - about the only way to be sure you are avoiding it, is to make all your food from basic ingredients yourself and avoid the processed food on the supermarket shelves.

Reesacat
09-29-09, 10:25 AM
You even have to watch the fresh fruit segments in the grocery store-anything you do not make from scratch probably has something in it like MSG or Splenda, etc. Organic products are better, but you still have to watch them.

DizzyIzzy
09-30-09, 07:55 AM
Can I just ask, totally unrelated to the evil that is aspartame, what is catsup?! I've only ever seen it in that episode of the Simpsons where Mr Burns compares ketchup and catsup, and I always wondered. :p

Maurya
09-30-09, 08:28 AM
Can I just ask, totally unrelated to the evil that is aspartame, what is catsup?! I've only ever seen it in that episode of the Simpsons where Mr Burns compares ketchup and catsup, and I always wondered. :p
Anyone from Pittsburgh, USA could tell you that it is ketchup, rather than catsup (we have our own language in Pittsburgh) and that it basically is bludgeoned tomatoes. :)

Islander
09-30-09, 10:52 AM
Can I just ask, totally unrelated to the evil that is aspartame, what is catsup?! I've only ever seen it in that episode of the Simpsons where Mr Burns compares ketchup and catsup, and I always wondered. :p

What primitive, undeveloped part of the world do you live in, woman??!
Catsup is a tomato-based condiment, cooked into an applesauce-like consistency with spices and a dash of what used to be sugar but is now commonly HFCS (unless you can find an organic brand). People use it on hot dogs, hamburgers, scrambled eggs, french fries, etc. etc. I rarely use it myself, except sometimes as the base for a homemade BBQ sauce.

I like "bludgeoned tomatoes!"

Aaltrude
10-01-09, 06:22 AM
What primitive, undeveloped part of the world do you live in, woman??!


...................maybe we are primitive and undeveloped because we don't know what catsup is, but it is a great primitive, undeveloped part of the world to live.

DizzyIzzy
10-01-09, 07:48 AM
Lol, well said Aaltrude. :p

I know the stuff you mean!! Ketchup? We call it 'tomato sauce' down here, because as you could probably tell from our place names, we're very creative in our nomenclature ('North Island', 'South Island', 'River 1', 'River 2', 'River 3', etc... lol). :cool:

Islander
10-01-09, 10:14 AM
...................maybe we are primitive and undeveloped because we don't know what catsup is, but it is a great primitive, undeveloped part of the world to live.

Aaltrude, you know I'm kidding, right? Right?

Up here, "tomato sauce" is a pureed tomato product, no sugar, no spices. You might use it in a casserole or as the base for pasta sauce.

Funny how dialects differ!

Reesacat
10-01-09, 11:42 AM
Y'all are the ones with the diahlect.....;)

Aaltrude
10-01-09, 02:00 PM
We call it 'tomato sauce' down here, because as you could probably tell from our place names, we're very creative in our nomenclature ('North Island', 'South Island', 'River 1', 'River 2', 'River 3', etc... lol). :cool:

............and bridge 1, bridge 2, bridge 3 etc.
........... but can anyone apart from Izzy pronounce "Paraparaumu", Whangamata" "Waipukurau" "Eketehuna", "Papakowhai" or try this one "Taumatawhakatangihangakoauauotamateapokaiwhenuakit anatahu" .

Aaltrude
10-01-09, 02:02 PM
[quote=Islander]Aaltrude, you know I'm kidding, right? Right?
quote]
Right :);):p

Islander
10-01-09, 10:03 PM
There's a lake in Webster, Massachusetts called Chargoggagoggmanchauggagoggchaubunagungamaugg. It means "You fish on your side. I fish on my side. Nobody fish in the middle."

DizzyIzzy
10-02-09, 05:18 AM
Hahahaha! :D

Aaltrude - I can proudly say I can indeed pronounce the stupidly long name of that hill. I took it up as a holiday challenge a few years ago and won a $10 bet over it, hehehe. Though I'm ashamed to say I doubt most of NZ could pronounce 'Paraparaumu' properly, lol.

Oh, and it means 'The hill/summit/peak where Tamatea, the man with the big knees, conqueror of mountains, the land-swallower who travelled around, played his flute to his loved one'.

You forgot to mention the most well-named skifield of all, Whakapapa... :cool:

Aaltrude
10-02-09, 01:41 PM
Hahahaha! :D

Aaltrude - I can proudly say I can indeed pronounce the stupidly long name of that hill. I took it up as a holiday challenge a few years ago and won a $10 bet over it, hehehe. Though I'm ashamed to say I doubt most of NZ could pronounce 'Paraparaumu' properly, lol.

Oh, and it means 'The hill/summit/peak where Tamatea, the man with the big knees, conqueror of mountains, the land-swallower who travelled around, played his flute to his loved one'.

You forgot to mention the most well-named skifield of all, Whakapapa... :cool:

Now now Iz:D
For the unintiated, the Maori "Wh" is pronounced as an "F".

I learned to pronounce that long name many years ago too. I learned it parrot fashion from the song by Peter Cape.

Maurya
10-02-09, 02:49 PM
"What primitive, undeveloped part of the world do you live in, woman??!"
Well, this is my delayed response: The primitive, undeveloped part of the world in question is the Land of Heinz, as in Heinz Field of the Steelers (American Football) and as in Heinz 57 Varieties, and as in people who are Senators or who marry Senators, etc. In other words, a good place to be "from", a nice place to go in the summertime only, to visit relatives and other creatures. My apologies to those for whom this is all Greek (or perhaps is all Maori). :D

DizzyIzzy
10-02-09, 05:27 PM
Now now Iz:D
For the unintiated, the Maori "Wh" is pronounced as an "F".

Unless you're from the Wanganui/Whanganui region like me, where it's a soft-H... ahh, let's not go there. ;)


I learned to pronounce that long name many years ago too. I learned it parrot fashion from the song by Peter Cape.

Hahahaha! I haven't heard the song... <google google>

Aaltrude
10-02-09, 09:51 PM
Unless you're from the Wanganui/Whanganui region like me, where it's a soft-H... ahh, let's not go there. ;)

Hahahaha! I haven't heard the song... <google google>

I used to live in Wanganui once - you can tell from my spelling which I prefer.

Peter Cape info here. http://folksong.org.nz/petrcape.html
He also wrote the "Taumaranui" song which you must know Iz.
Taumata info here. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Taumatawhakatangihangakoauauotamateapokaiwhenuakit anatahu

I also used to live not far from Taumata once - never been there though.