Aspartame, known commercially as Nutrasweet, is an artificial sweetener that is 200 times sweeter than sugar. Aspartame consists of the amino acids phenylalanine and aspartic acid as well as methanol, or methyl alcohol or wood alcohol.

Although aspartame is widely used in the food industry, research shows that consumption of the chemical in high doses can have detrimental effects on the body, triggering headaches, mood swings, changes in vision, nausea and diarrhea, sleep disorders, memory loss and confusion.

When making your next shopping list, be sure these are NOT foods added, as they could contain aspartame. Also, be sure to check food and beverage labels for the artificial sweetener:

  • Instant breakfasts
  • Breath mints
  • Cereals
  • Sugar-free gum
  • Cocoa mix
  • Coffee beverages
  • Frozen desserts
  • Gelatin
  • Some juices and milk drinks
  • Soft drinks
  • Shake mixes
  • Tabletop sweeteners
  • Instant teas and coffees
  • Yogurt
  • Wine coolers
  • Multivitamins

Looking for sugar alternatives? Check out some of our favorites here.

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