Ralph Walton, MD, asks FDA to ban aspartame: Stephen Fox: Rich Murray 2009.08.18
- Ralph Walton, MD, asks FDA to ban aspartame: Stephen Fox: Rich Murray
Tuesday, August 18, 2009
Tag(s): Artificial Sweetener; Aspartame; Aspartame Poisoning;
Carcinogenic; Dr Russell Blaylock; Equal Merisant;
Margaret Hamburg; Merisant; Monsanto; Neurotoxic; (more...)
Psychiatrists; Ralph Walton Md (less...)
August 14, 2009 at 11:52:02
New York Psychiatrist Exhorts FDA to Rescind Artificial
Sweetener Aspartame Approval
by Dr. Ralph Walton, M.D. (Posted by Stephen Fox)
Page 1 of 1 page
Margaret Hamburg, M.D.
5600 Fishers Lane
Rockville, Maryland 20857
Dear Dr. Hamburg:
I would like to urgently request that the F.D.A. re-visit the
approval of aspartame.
This is an issue which I have been involved with for the past 25
years -- initially because of the adverse effects experienced by
one of my patients. I had been treating a then 54 year old
woman with imipramine because of recurrent major depressive
episodes. Previous psychoanalytically based therapy had
proven ineffective, but she responded dramatically to 150 mg
of imipramine per day. She had done well for 11 years on this
medication, but was then suddenly hospitalized with a grand
mal seizure and subsequent manic episode.
One could postulate that she was bipolar and the imipramine
had triggered the mania, but she had been on the same
medication for a total of 11 years, and for the previous 5
years at the same 150 mg per day dose. Neither the seizure
nor her mania were consistent with what we know about the
clinical course of bipolar disorder or epilepsy. Careful history
revealed that the only change in her life was a recent decision
to switch from the sugar which she had always used to sweeten
her iced tea to a newly marketed product with aspartame.
I reasoned that the aspartame could have altered the
catecholamine/indoleamine balance and thus account for her
After the publication of this case report many patients with
unexplained seizures or puzzling psychiatric presentations were
referred to me. I became increasingly convinced that aspartame
could trigger seizure activity and mimic or exacerbate a variety
of psychiatric disorders. I presented a paper based on those
patients at a 1987 MIT sponsored conference on dietary
phenylalanine and brain function.
Industry sponsored criticism was made that my conclusions
regarding aspartame's toxicity could not be accepted as valid
because my case reports were "merely anecdotal" and not
based on double-blind research. Although I personally
believe that case reports are undervalued in modern medical
literature, I was so convinced of aspartame's toxicity, and the
need to have it's hazards more widely appreciated in the
medical community, that I did undertake a double-blind study.
That study was published in Biological Psychiatry in 1993
(a copy of the paper is enclosed). It demonstrated that
individuals with mood disorders are particularly sensitive to
aspartame and experienced an accentuation of depression
and multiple physical symptoms. I had expected that the
difficulties experienced by patients receiving aspartame
would be fairly subtle (the dose of 30 mg/kg/day was well
below the 50 mg/kg/day that the F.D.A. considered "safe").
I was not prepared for the severity of the reactions and for
obvious ethical reasons cannot perform any further human
studies with aspartame.
Two years after the publication of that study I was contacted by
a producer for "60 Minutes" and asked if I would be willing to
be interviewed by Mike Wallace for a segment on aspartame.
During that interview Mike challenged me on my assertion that
there were major problems with this sweetener in view of the
fact that the bulk of the medical literature attested to its safety.
I responded that one had to look carefully at study funding --
that virtually all of the studies claiming safety were funded by
the industry, whereas independently funded studies invariably
identified one or more problems. When he challenged me to
prove this I prepared a chart correlating study outcome and
funding source. This chart was aired on the 60 Minutes
segment, and is enclosed, with further discussion of this entire
Although for obvious ethical reasons I cannot perform further
human studies with aspartame, as a busy clinician I continue
to see the multiple neurological and psychiatric consequences
of aspartame use. It can lower seizure threshold and lead to
an incorrect diagnosis of epilepsy, with subsequent
inappropriate prescription of anticonvulsants. It can mimic
or exacerbate symptoms of MS, it can paradoxically produce
carbohydrate craving and weight gain. The world-wide epidemic
of obesity and type 2 diabetes obviously has multiple causes,
but I am convinced aspartame is a major factor.
On a daily basis I see how it can both produce and aggravate
depression, in certain patients it can trigger manic episodes, it can
produce or aggravate panic attacks. Some of my patients have
experienced a complete cessation of panic attacks and needed
no further treatment after they totally eliminated aspartame from
their diet. Certain schizophrenic patients have experienced fewer
auditory hallucinations and needed less antipsychotic medication
after the elimination of aspartame consumption.
Thank you Dr. Hamburg for your attention to this urgent public
Ralph G. Walton, M.D.
Former Professor and Chairman,
Department of Psychiatry,
Northeastern Ohio Universities College of Medicine
four Murray AspartameNM reviews in SE Jacob & SA
Stechschulte debate with EG Abegaz & RG Bursey of
Ajinomoto re migraines from formaldehyde from aspartame,
Dermatitis 2009 May: TE Hugli -- folic acid with V-C
protects: Rich Murray 2009.08.12
Wednesday, August 12, 2009
Nurses Health Study can quickly reveal the extent of aspartame
(methanol, formaldehyde, formic acid) toxicity:
Murray 2004.11.21 rmforall
antiseptic? antifungal? antiviral? methanol (formaldehyde, formic
acid) disposition: Bouchard M et al, full plain text, 2001:
substantial sources are degradation of fruit pectins, liquors,
aspartame, smoke: Murray 2005.01.05 rmforall
Since no adequate data has ever been published on the
exact disposition of toxic metabolites in specific tissues in humans
of the 11 % methanol component of aspartame,
the many studies on morning-after hangover from the methanol
impurity in alcohol drinks are the main available resource to date.
highly toxic formaldehyde, the cause of alcohol hangovers, is
made by the body from 100 mg doses of methanol from
dark wines and liquors, dimethyl dicarbonate, and aspartame:
DMDC: Dimethyl dicarbonate 200mg/L in drinks
adds methanol 98 mg/L ( becomes formaldehyde in body ):
EU Scientific Committee on Foods 2001.07.12:
"...DMDC was evaluated by the SCF in 1990 and considered
acceptable for the cold sterilization of soft drinks and fruit juices
at levels of addition up to 250 mg/L (1)
...DMDC decomposes primarily to CO2 and methanol ...
[ Note: Sterilization of bacteria and fungi is a toxic process,
probably due to the inevitable conversion in the body of
methanol into highly toxic formaldehyde and then formic acid. ]
The use of 200 mg DMDC per liter would add 98 mg/L of
methanol to wine which already contains an average of about
140 mg/L from natural sources.
methanol products (formaldehyde and formic acid) are main
cause of alcohol hangover symptoms [same as from similar
amounts of methanol, the 11% part of aspartame]:
YS Woo et al, 2005 Dec: Murray 2006.01.20
Addict Biol. 2005 Dec;10(4): 351-5.
Concentration changes of methanol in blood samples during
an experimentally induced alcohol hangover state.
Woo YS, Yoon SJ, Lee HK, Lee CU, Chae JH, Lee CT,
Chuncheon National Hospital, Department of Psychiatry,
The Catholic University of Korea, Seoul, Korea.
Songsin Campus: 02-740-9714
Songsim Campus: 02-2164-4116
Songeui Campus: 02-2164-4114
http://www.cuk.ac.kr/eng/sub055.htm eight hospitals
[ Han-Kyu Lee ]
A hangover is characterized by the unpleasant physical and
mental symptoms that occur between 8 and 16 hours after
After inducing experimental hangover in normal individuals,
we measured the methanol concentration prior to
and after alcohol consumption
and we assessed the association between the hangover
condition and the blood methanol level.
A total of 18 normal adult males participated in this study.
They did not have any previous histories of psychiatric
or medical disorders.
The blood ethanol concentration prior to the alcohol intake
(2.26+/-2.08) was not significantly different from that
13 hours after the alcohol consumption (3.12+/-2.38).
However, the difference of methanol concentration
between the day of experiment (prior to the alcohol intake)
and the next day (13 hours after the alcohol intake)
was significant (2.62+/-1.33/l vs. 3.88+/-2.10/l, respectively).
A significant positive correlation was observed
between the changes of blood methanol concentration
and hangover subjective scale score increment when covarying
for the changes of blood ethanol level (r=0.498, p<0.05).
This result suggests the possible correlation of methanol
as well as its toxic metabolite to hangover. PMID: 16318957
[ The toxic metabolite of methanol is formaldehyde, which in turn
partially becomes formic acid -- both potent cumulative toxins
that are the actual cause of the toxicity of methanol.]
This study by Jones AW (1987) found next-morning hangover
from red wine with 100 to 150 mg methanol
(9.5 % w/v ethanol, 100 mg/l methanol, 0.01 %).
Fully 11% of aspartame is methanol --
1,120 mg aspartame in 2 L diet soda,
almost six 12-oz cans, gives 123 mg methanol (wood alcohol).
Pharmacol Toxicol. 1987 Mar; 60(3): 217-20.
Elimination half-life of methanol during hangover.
Jones AW. wayne.jones@...;
Department of Forensic Toxicology,
University Hospital, SE-581 85 Linkoping, Sweden.
This paper reports the elimination half-life of methanol in human
Experiments were made during the morning after the subjects had
consumed 1000-1500 ml red wine
(9.5 % w/v ethanol, 100 mg/l methanol)
the previous evening. [ 100 to 150 mg methanol ]
The washout of methanol from the body
coincided with the onset of hangover.
The concentrations of ethanol and methanol in blood were
determined indirectly by analysis of end-expired alveolar air.
In the morning when blood-ethanol dropped
below the Km of liver alcohol dehydrogenase (ADH)
of about 100 mg/l (2.2 mM),
the disappearance half-life of ethanol was 21, 22, 18 and 15 min.
in 4 test subjects respectively.
The corresponding elimination half-lives of methanol
were 213, 110, 133 and 142 min. in these same individuals.
The experimental design outlined in this paper can be used
to obtain useful data on elimination kinetics of methanol
in human volunteers without undue ethical limitations.
Circumstantial evidence is presented to link methanol
or its toxic metabolic products, formaldehyde and formic acid,
with the pathogenesis of hangover. PMID: 3588516
Thrasher (2001): "The major difference is that the Japanese
demonstrated the incorporation of FA and its metabolites
into the placenta and fetus.
The quantity of radioactivity remaining in maternal and fetal tissues
at 48 hours was 26.9 % of the administered dose." [ Ref. 14-16 ]
Arch Environ Health 2001 Jul-Aug; 56(4): 300-11.
Embryo toxicity and teratogenicity of formaldehyde.
Thrasher JD, Kilburn KH. toxicology@...
Sam-1 Trust, Alto, New Mexico, USA.
http://www.drthrasher.org/formaldehyde_1990.html full text
Jack Dwayne Thrasher, Alan Broughton, Roberta Madison.
Immune activation and autoantibodies in humans
with long-term inhalation exposure to formaldehyde.
Archives of Environmental Health. 1990; 45: 217-223.
"Immune activation, autoantibodies, and anti-HCHO-HSA
antibodies are associated with long-term formaldehyde
inhalation." PMID: 2400243
"Of course, everyone chooses, as a natural priority, to enjoy
peace, joy, and love by helping to find, quickly share, and positively
act upon evidence about healthy and safe food, drink, and
Rich Murray, MA Room For All rmforall@...
505-501-2298 1943 Otowi Road, Santa Fe, New Mexico 87505
http://RMForAll.blogspot.com new primary archive
group with 141 members, 1,584 posts in a public archive
group with 1207 members, 23,867 posts in a public archive