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Aspartame is an artificial chemical substance that is a non- saccharide sweetener that in most cases used as a sugar substitute in some of the foods and beverages we consume daily. The commodity is a methyl ester that contains phenylalanine dipeptide and aspartic acid, and these substances have been used in the formation of this substance. The substance being an artificial sweetener scientists states that it is approximately 200 times sweeter than sugar, and with this high level of sweetness the amount needed to improve the taste of a substance is very small. They have also stated that the taste of this substance differs from the taste of sugar in the period the sweet taste lasts on the tongue as the taste of this substance tends to last longer on the tongue as compared to the taster of the table sugar (Roberts, p.23). And it's from this quality that the substance is mixed with others sweeteners in order to produce a substance that has a higher sweeter taste than the overall sugar.
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In the year 1965 the subsistence was discovered by James Schlatter. Mr. Schlatter was working for G. D. Searle & Company, when he accidentally discovered this new compound when he was trying to develop a drug to treat gastric ulcers. He forgot that he had accidentally spilled some of the new compound on his hands; thus when he licked his fingers in order to pick up a piece of paper and noticed a very sweet taste on his hands. After tracing the origin of the sweetness back to the compound he was working on, he repeated the procedure in order to see if the experiment will have the same results and after tasting it again he noticed the same sweet taste. Soon after the discovery, publications on Aspartame appeared. It was only until 1969, when an article was written describing how aspartame could be used as an artificial sweetener that Searle applied for a patent.
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The substance has in the past faced a lot of controversy on its effects on humans and it faces a lot of controversies today. This was from the results of the 1967 experiment that was conducted at the University of Wisconsin. The test involved the feeding seven infant monkeys with the newly developed chemical compound called Aspartame (Roberts, p.73). And from the experiment one of the seven monkeys died and five suffered grand mal seizures, and despite the effects of the substance on the infant monkeys the substance is today found as a component in thousands of products most of us consume every day. This is as a result of the Governmental and corporate greed that has paved way for the substance to reach a lot of consumers despite the adverse effects that the substance had on the human body from the very beginning.
The Composition of Aspartame
As stated earlier in the paper this substance is composed of phenylalanine dipeptide and aspartic acid that are the key components that form Aspartame (Pugliese, para.4). It's noted that when the substance is subjected to a lot of acidity or alkalinity, the substance may from methanol by the process of hydrolysis. The substance will also form amino acids when the peptide bonds are hydrolyzed under more severe acidic or alkaline conditions (Centers for Disease Control, para.3).
These two approaches of synthesis are used commercially, thus in the chemical synthesis of Aspartame as the different groups of the carboxyl of the aspartic acids are joined into an anhydride, thus the amino acid will protect these substances from any further hydrolysis.
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Uses of the substance
In the years 1965 Aspartame was accidentally discovered by James Schlatter, while working for the G. D. Searle & Company (US Food and Drug Administration, para.4). And from the licking of the substance the sweeter taste of the substance made it possible for the substance to be used as a substitute of the table sugar. This is because it is 200 more times sweeter that sugar and only a smaller amount of the subsistence is needed to be used as a sweetener of a food substance.
Laws governing its use
Aspartame has undergone various legal challenges before it became a product that is fully certified to be used in all the beverages, baked foods and carbonated beverages. Since Aspartame was discovered in 1965 by James M. Schlatter, the substance have undergone through a lot of legal issues that made the substance accepted by the health experts for its use on foods in the food consumption.
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The legal cases that involved the legalization of Aspartame can be dated from the year 1975, this is when the issues related to the legality of Flagyl and Aldactone was the most factor of consideration in the United States of America Food and Drug Administration. The administration set up a task force that started to check on the effects of 25 products including Aldactone , Flagyl and Aspartame amongst other products. From the report from the commission found out that the Searle & Company operations and practices were full of deficiencies. In 1979 the Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition (CFSAN) concluded that the problems that were registered about Aspartame were minimal and the product was said to be safe for human consumptions (Pugliese, para.4).
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In the year 1980 the US Food and Drug Administration claimed that that the substance was associated to Brain Cancer, and these claims were Public Board of Inquiry (PBOI) not supported and the substance was cleared off these claims of the responsible cause of brain cancer. It was not fully to be approved to be used as some experiments on its cancerous claims were still being conducted. In the year 1983 the US Food and Drug Administration approved Aspartame in carbonated beverages and backed goods (US Food and Drug Administration, para.4). In 1996, the substance was relieved off all the restrictions it had and it could be used in all the foods as a political strategy and this went to all the other food commissions such as European Food Safety Authority thus making it an acceptable daily intake product.
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Its Effects to an individual body
There are raised concerns about the effects of on the human body, this is clearly seen from the first experiment that was conducted on the seven monkeys in the year 1967 when its was being tested. The test resulted to the death of one monkeys while 5 developed severe cases of grand mal seizures; this was a clear indication that the substance has negative effects on the humans (Bowen, par 3). The drug has been associated with diverse side effects which includes the cause of dioceses like Diabetes, Brain Tumor / Cancer, Obesity, pulmonary hypertension amongst other diseases.
It should be noted that all these diseases and side effects that have been mentioned as a caused by this substance are as a result of high concentration of sugars in the body of an individual. It is noted that the increased sugars in the body will have some side effects in the individuals' body (Hull, pg 28). This might be seen as the reason behind the death of the monkeys and the developing of diverse seizures on the 5 other monkeys. This is because of the increased level of the sugar levels in the body to the extent of making it impossible for the body to perform its functions successfully thus resulting to an individual developing the complications mentioned earlier in the paper.
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Where is the substance used?
Since it was approved to be used in all the other food products in 1996, it was initially restricted to only some types of foods the political conspiracy that was associated with its approval. It has been used as a sweetener in almost all the food stuffs that are being consumed on a daily basis by the humans in the entire universes (Mitchell p. 94). It is also used in Carbonated Beverages, Beverages, Baked Products, Liquefied Sodas, Ice Cream and Chocolates and other food products that are containing a lot of sugar concentration.
Precautions taken incase of poisoning Aspartame
Aspartame like any other consumable substance has got side effects, this is because of its sweet taste the substance is very sweet and the individual might be addicted to it a major case is the case of sodas. This is because the people are more addicted tom sodas and one might drink huge volumes of sodas without knowing that it has negative effects on there body. Incase of excess consumption of Aspartame an individual has to conduct the following precautions in order to regain their normal health back; get a hair analysis, eat raw foods that is75% at every meal, Drink a lot of water, get plenty of rest, Exercise and Detoxification amongst other measures aimed at restoring the body strength back.
Aspartame is a substance that has been approved for consumer use as a result of political conspiracy and the US Food and Drug Administration have decided to authorize the spread of the products without solving all the myths that are surrounding the substance. This is because the doctors' society had indicated that the substance is responsible for the spread of Brain tumors as the amino acids contained in the substance doesn't require to be digested; but, they are absorbed directly into the brain. This results to over stimulating the brain cells to their death; as a result, causing diseases like brain tumors and other heath problems that affects an individual (Centers for Disease Control, para.3). The use of Aspartame should be monitored in order to ensure that the substance is well researched and reviewed before it is given the approval to be used in all food stuffs.