School Test: Dump the Diet Coke

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Soil & Health wants schools to try a 60-day diet beverage and sugar-free gum break to test for pupil behaviour improvement. Diet and sugar-free products often contain the neurotoxin aspartame.

“With increasing behavioural, mental health and obesity issues in the community, also prevalent in our schools, it is timely that visiting anti-aspartame expert Betty Martini’s simple 60 aspartame free days experiment be tried,” said Soil & Health spokesperson Steffan Browning.

“Aspartame consumption has been linked to many health symptoms, including those expressed as ADHD, anxiety, depression, irritability, confusion, memory loss, insomnia, dizziness, migraines, cramps, abdominal pain, numbness or tingling of extremities, rashes, chronic fatigue, and personality changes. These same symptoms are increasingly expressed among our young people, and a short spell without aspartame may assist with a marked improvement in quality of life for some, and their families and teachers.”

“60 days aspartame free has been recommended for identifying more subtle health effects, although Diet Coke and Wrigleys gum consumer, Abby Cormack, recently had immediate benefit from her severe aspartame poisoning symptoms when she stopped aspartame intake.”

“ Unfortunately many schools, while concerned with sugar in their rapidly growing obese students, have retained aspartame containing diet drinks in the school canteens,” said Browning, “Yet aspartame through its action on serotonin can increase the desire for carbohydrates, aggravating the obesity problem. Serotonin depletion is also directly linked with depressive disorders ”

“Corruption of political process has allowed aspartame to be allowed into the food chain, even though as far back as 1985, the USA Congressional Record, Senate, S – 5511, recorded this statement:

“Aspartame has been demonstrated to inhibit the carbohydrate-induced synthesis of the neurotransmitter serotonin (Wurtman affidavit). Serotonin blunts the sensation of craving carbohydrates and this is part of the body’s feedback system that helps limit consumption of carbohydrate to appropriate levels. Its inhibition by aspartame could lead to the anomalous result of a diet product causing increased consumption of carbohydrates.””

“Withdrawing diet drinks and other sugar-free labelled products from school canteens, as is increasingly happening in the USA and Europe, is a must for New Zealand. A trial period by schools is the least Boards of Trustees can do to improve the health of their students and the effectiveness of the teaching staff,” said Browning.

Soil & Health and the Safe Food Campaign are hosting Betty Martini, international anti-aspartame campaigner and expert from the USA, and Wellington aspartame sufferer Abby Cormack, to public meetings at Wellington Central Public Library, Mezzanine Floor 6-8pm today, Tuesday 31 July, and Auckland Thursday 2nd August 7-30pm at the Auckland Medical School, 85 Grafton Road.