ATLANTA (May 18, 2009) — The American Dietetic Association (ADA) recently evaluated the low-calorie sweetener aspartame and its effects on weight, appetite, desire for sweetness and alleged adverse reactions for its Evidence Analysis Library (EAL). After the evaluation, the ADA reaffirmed the conclusion of regulatory and scientific authorities around the world that aspartame is not associated with adverse effects for the general population, including hypersensitivity reactions, elevated blood methanol or formate levels, or brain cancers. This conclusion statement was given a “Grade 1,” the highest grade on the EAL scale, signifying there is good evidence supporting the conclusion. Further, the conclusion statement notes, “In patients with diabetes, aspartame consumption is not associated with elevated plasma phenylalanine and tyrosine levels, fasting glucose control, intolerance to aspartame, ophthalmologic effects, heart rhythm or weight.”
According to the ADA, “There is good evidence that aspartame does not affect appetite or food intake”. The ADA review of aspartame and energy balance (weight) found that, as part of a low-calorie diet, aspartame may be associated with increased weight loss. The ADA also looked specifically at whether there is evidence of adverse effects on children. While, as would be expected, fewer clinical studies have been conducted with children, they concluded that available information is not suggestive of any adverse effects.
The ADA’s EAL systematically reviews selected literature using its “evidence analysis” approach, which evaluates relevant human studies that fall within specified, pre-determined parameters. Factors such as size and quality of each study are taken into account. After each study is analyzed, a conclusion statement is formulated for each question, and a “grade” is assigned to each statement indicating the strength of the evidence supporting that conclusion.
To access the full EAL aspartame report, visit: http://www.aboutaspartame.com/professional/news.asp.