The overwhelming body of scientific evidence clearly demonstrates that aspartame, even in amounts many times what people typically consume, is safe and not associated with adverse aspartame side effects. However, over the years, some consumers have reported symptoms, which they believed were associated with aspartame. The FDA has investigated these allegations and concluded that there is no "reasonable evidence of possible public health harm" and "no consistent or unique patterns of symptoms reported with respect to aspartame that can be causally linked to its use."
[ Read more from The Medical News about "aspartame danger" myths including false claims of aspartame's link to cancer, weight gain, and Alzheimer's disease. ]
In 1984, the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) reviewed 517 of these anecdotal reports and stated, "the majority of frequently reported symptoms were mild and are symptoms that are common in the general populace" and that “focused” clinical studies would be the best way to evaluate these complaints.
As a result, numerous scientific studies “focused” on the allegations were conducted by expert researchers at major academic institutions. The results of these studies overwhelmingly demonstrated that aspartame is not associated with adverse health effects, including headaches, seizures, changes in mood, cognition, or behavior, or allergic reactions.
Despite the overwhelming documentation of aspartame’s safety, unfounded allegations that aspartame is associated with a myriad of ailments, including multiple sclerosis, Parkinson’s disease, Alzheimer’s disease, and lupus, have continued to be spread via the Internet and the media by a few individuals who have no documented scientific or medical expertise. Recently, several governments and expert scientific committees (including the Scientific Committee on Food of the European Commission, the United Kingdom’s Food Standards Agency, the French Food Safety Agency and Health Canada) carefully evaluated the Internet allegations and found them to be false, reconfirming the safety of aspartame. In addition, leading health authorities, such as the Multiple Sclerosis Foundation, The National Multiple Sclerosis Society, The National Parkinson Foundation, Inc., the Alzheimer’s Association, and the Lupus Foundation of America, have reviewed the claims on the Internet and also concluded that they are false.