The Grocery Store as Mine Field,
Avoiding the Dangers. Is
Your Supermarket a Minefield?
I went shopping with my 11 year old nephew, and was shocked and unprepared for
the experience. Like other kids his age,
he preferred diet sodas containing aspartame and Brominated Vegetable Oil
(BVO). He also preferred processed foods
high in MSG (mono sodium glutamate). I found myself protesting his choices,
explaining the dangers of food additives, and removing these items from the
shopping cart as fast I could. These
food additives are harmful to health, and represent a minefield at the
Supermarket waiting for the unsuspecting consumer.
Left Image: A U.S. Navy diver attaches charge to a training mine, during
exercises, courtesy of Wikimedia Commons.
Dubious Honor - Diet Sodas are a Mine Field
Since the 1981 approval as a food additive,
aspartame has the dubious honor of the most complaints reported to the FDA's
Adverse Reaction Monitoring System, accounting for 75 per cent of all
complaints.(9) Aspartame is a chemical
sweetener in diet sodas such as Diet Coke and Diet Pepsi with names such as
Nutrasweet™, Equal™, etc. Little packets
of aspartame are placed on the tables at restaurants for use as a coffee
sweetener instead of sugar. The aspartame
industry has sponsored 74 aspartame safety studies, all showing aspartame
consumption is safe. When studies are
done privately, with no connection to the aspartame industry or the FDA, 89 of
90 aspartame safety studies identified problems with aspartame use.(1) A
disturbing 2007 study by Soffritti at the Ramazzini Institute in Italy showed
aspartame to be a multipotential carcinogen.(2)
the Aspartame Mine Field
Many people drink diet sodas with the mistaken
belief that diet sodas will help them lose weight. A recent study shows this is a fallacy,
finding a 41% increased risk of being overweight for every can or bottle of
diet soft drink consumed daily.(8) The
sweetener aspartame activates receptors in the brain to expect sugar (glucose),
when none is forthcoming, the aspartame user merely increases junk food and
Monosodium Glutamate, and Aspartame are neurotoxins.
- Chinese Restaurant Syndrome
Forty years ago, my earliest experience with MSG
(Mono Sodium Glutamate) during medical school was a headache after eating at a
Chinese restaurant. The MSG causes the
Chinese Restaurant Syndrome.(3) Since my old medical school days, MSG has been
added to thousands of products at the supermarket, and virtually all forms of
fast food. Much of this MSG is hidden
and does not appear on the label.
MSG and the Obesity Epidemic
MSG stands for mono sodium glutamate, and Glutamate
is an excitatory neurotransmitter in the brain.
Upregulation (stimulation) of the Glutamate pathway leads to neuron cell
damage and cell death. MSG is associated with lesions in the hypothalamus (11),
directly causes obesity (4), and a host of somatic and neurological
symptoms. Laboratory mice studies show
that MSG is a direct cause of obesity.
Is our obesity epidemic caused by increased MSG consumption in the
Sources of MSG - It's Not On the Label.
Virtually all Fast Foods contain large amounts
of MSG, and many processed foods now
contain MSG. In other words, the
processed food contains MSG in some form, yet the name MSG does not appear on
and MSG - Fibromyalgia Double Whammy
Both Aspartame and MSG are excitatory
neurotoxins.(6) When aspartame and MSG
are consumed together, as commonly found with fast food and diet sodas in the
same meal, there can be a double whammy effect.
A 2001 report describes four patients with fibromyalgia syndrome
unresponsive to medical treatment.(7) These
four patients noted complete resolution of chronic pain upon removing aspartame
and MSG from the diet.(7) In addition, a
lengthy list of medical and neurological symptoms are associated with MSG and
aspartame. One syndrome includes slurred
speech which looks like a TIA (transient ischemic attack). This usually resolves after elimination of
MSG and aspartame from the diet. A 1981
study by Dhindsa showed that MSG administered to lab rats caused marked
hypothyroidism with striking histology changes in the thyroid gland.(10) A study presented at the 2011 American
Stroke Association Conference showed daily diet soda consumption had a 61
percent higher risk of stroke.(57)
Brominated Vegetable Oil
Bromine (BVO) is a toxic substance added to sodas
such as Mountain Dew, Gatorade, Powerade, Pineapple and Orange Fanta, Sun Drop,
Squirt and Fresca. Bromine directly
competes with Iodine in the body causing thyroid problems and Iodine deficiency
states. BVO has been banned in India.
About the FDA ?
The FDA is an agency of our government, and like all
other agencies, is infiltrated and corrupted by corporate lobbyists. Rather than an agency for the people, the FDA
is an agency of the large corporations that manufacture food additives. The
safety studies are manipulated to get FDA approval. And that's why the FDA
cannot protect the American public from harmful food additives at our
Conclusion- Avoid the Minefield at the Supermarket
We have merely scratched the surface of harmful food
additives to avoid at the Supermarket, concentrating on the excitatory
neurotoxins Aspartame and MSG. There are other minefields at the grocery store to
be avoided such as chemicalized food additives, flavorings, coloring, and trans-fats. Genetically Modified Food (GMO) should be
avoided as hazardous to health.
This article is part one of a series, for part two, click here.
For references and links, see my web site: www.bioidenticalhormones101.com
References for Chapter 47. The
Grocery Store as Mine Field, Avoiding the Dangers
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Rats. Environ Health Perspect 115(9)
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Drink More Diet Soda, Gain More Weight? Overweight Risk Soars 41% With Each
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Charlotte E. Grayson Mathis
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(15) http://www.momlogic.com/2008/06/10_food_preservatives_to_avoid.php 10 Preservatives to Avoid
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Aspartame - Nutrasweet video on You tube
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Author: Jeffrey Dach MD