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Posted: 20 January 2010

NGO's call for diet drink's aspartame to be dumped in New Zealand -- stevia approved: Rich Murray 2010.01.14
Thursday, January 14, 2010


NGO's call for Diet drink's aspartame to be dumped> Monday, 11 January 2010, 11:00 am

Press Release: Soil and Health Association Media Release
Attention: Health, Nutrition, Consumer, Trade, Food, Science Reporters.

Soil & Health Association of New Zealand (Est. 1941)
Publishers of ORGANIC NZ

10 January 2010

NGO's call for Diet drink's aspartame to be dumped in favour of natural sweeteners.

Safe food campaigning NGO's are once again calling for drinks and foods containing artificial sweeteners to be taken out of supermarket trolleys and 2010 school tuck-shops.

The Soil & Health Association of New Zealand and Safe Food Campaign point out that the sweetener aspartame in diet drinks, and most sugar-free gums, is widely accepted to be dangerous, and safe naturally derived alternatives are available.

Following a campaign throughout 2007-8 by Safe Food Campaign, Soil & Health Association of NZ, and anti-aspartame campaigner Abby Cormack, there was a world first 5% drop in diet drink sales and a 50% drop in chewing gum sales containing aspartame.

Abby Cormack had suffered serious health problems following a high consumption of Extra gum and use of some diet drinks.

However the NGO's are concerned that public relations work by Coca Cola may have lifted sales of Diet drinks containing the neurotoxic artificial sweetener aspartame again.

Internationally the big two beverage manufacturers, Coca Cola and Pepsi are beginning to use new naturally derived stevia sweeteners in response to consumer demands.

"While in our earlier campaign we were successful lifting public awareness about the dangers of aspartame it is important that those gains for peoples health are continued," said Abby Cormack. "It is disturbing that the government has reversed the healthy foods in schools program and allowed junk foods again. Neither the Diet labelled aspartame containing drinks or the heavily sugar laden drinks belong in school tuck shops." "I don't wish my past health problems on anyone, least of all New Zealand children."

"With the natural sweetener stevia already approved by Food Standards Australia New Zealand (FSANZ), there is no need to be selling aspartame containing foods and beverages in New Zealand," said Soil & Health spokesperson Steffan Browning.

"Soil & Health and Safe Food Campaign want junk drinks, especially those containing aspartame, out of schools for 2010.

There is no need to compound the health issues such as obesity in New Zealand children by using neurotoxic and carcinogenic containing products in tuck-shops."

Soil & Health promotes the use of natural sweeteners that fit its motto of 'Healthy Soil, Healthy Food, Healthy People,' and aspires to an Organic 2020.


Aspartame (951, Equal, Nutrasweet) is an artificial sweetener found in many products including diet drinks, sugar free products, dietary supplements, sports drinks and medications. Aspartame has been linked to many health symptoms, including those expressed as ADHD, anxiety, depression, irritability, confusion, memory loss, insomnia, dizziness, migraines, cramps, abdominal pain, numbness or tingling of extremities, rashes, chronic fatigue, and sight and personality changes.


Methanol (11% of aspartame), made by body into formaldehyde in many vulnerable tissues, causes modern diseases of civilization, summary of a century of research, Woodrow C Monte PhD, Medical Hypotheses journal: Rich Murray 2009.11.15
Sunday, November 15, 2009

Methanol: A Chemical Trojan Horse as the Root of the Inscrutable U Prepublication Copy; Medical Hypotheses -- 06 November 2009 (10.1016/j.mehy.2009.09.059)
Woodrow C. Monte PhD
Professor of Food Science (retired)
Arizona State University
Corresponding author : Woodrow C. Monte PhD
470 South Rainbow Drive
Page, Arizona 86040
Key Words: food epidemiology; diseases of civilization; methanol; formaldehyde; aspartame; autism; multiple sclerosis; Alzheimer's; U-shaped curve.


Until 200 years ago, methanol was an extremely rare component of the human diet and is still rarely consumed in contemporary hunter and gatherer cultures. With the invention of canning in the 1800s, canned and bottled fruits and vegetables, whose methanol content greatly exceeds that of their fresh counterparts, became far more prevalent. The recent dietary introduction of aspartame, an artificial sweetener, 11% methanol by weight, has also greatly increased methanol consumption.

Moreover, methanol is a major component of cigarette smoke, known to be a causative agent of many diseases of civilization (DOC).

Conversion to formaldehyde in organs other than the liver is the principal means by which methanol may cause disease. The known sites of class I alcohol dehydrogenase (ADH I), the only human enzyme capable of metabolizing methanol to formaldehyde, correspond to the sites of origin for many DOC. Variability in sensitivity to exogenous methanol consumption may be accounted for in part by the presence of aldehyde dehydrogenase sufficient to reduce the toxic effect of formaldehyde production in tissue through its conversion to the much less toxic formic acid. The consumption or endogenous production of small amounts of ethanol, which acts as a competitive inhibitor of methanol's conversion to formaldehyde by ADH I, may afford some individuals protection from DOC.


Rich Murray, MA
Boston University Graduate School 1967 psychology,
BS MIT 1964, history and physics,
1943 Otowi Road
Santa Fe, New Mexico 87505
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