Topic: peripheral neuropathy - aspartame link?

I'm hoping somebody can help me with this.  Sorry this is so long.  I'm a writer so it's one of my weaknesses.  : )

I drink anywhere from 1-2 diet soda's a day.  I hate to admit it but I feel like an addict if I don't have my Diet Pepsi or Diet Dr. Pepper by mid-day and/or at night.  It's like liquid crack.  Same goes for my sugarless gum (Extra).  I'm probably chewing gum about 2/3 of the day, every day!  There are probably other sources of artificial sweeteners I'm getting into my body without knowing it but those two are most common.  I've increased my intake of diet soda within the past 6-12 months for whatever reason but I never drink more than 2 in a day.

So.... about 2 months ago I started to experience an electric-like shock running alongside my big toe towards my nail whenever I would rub up against the nerve.  My doctor just blew it off saying my shoe was probably aggravating it.  About a week later my other big toe started feeling the same.  Before long, my left index finger started getting the nerve shock whenever I touched it just right.  It even has one little area of numbness around the knuckle.  Fast forward to this past week, my entire body feels achy and fatigued, especially my legs!  Just walking across the parking lot the other day I felt like I had just ran 5 miles.  And now both feet and hands (wrists) get electric-like shocks if I tap them just right. 

My doctor said it appears to him it's a form of peripheral neuropathy but he doesn't know why.  He ran numerous blood tests over the past several days to rule out certain things.  My blood glucose, B12, TSH, white count, ALT, SED rate and a few autoimmune panels were just fine.  My serum folate (folic acid) was about 3 points high but other than that most of the tests are within range.  I'm still waiting for my Thiamine results to come back. 

I spoke to a friend of mine who has MS and he said symptoms are different for everyone but he felt it would never come on that quick.  I began to think of what is my daily routine (my diet) that could cause something like this.  I over-looked it time and time again because drinking diet soda and chewing gum has been a part of my lifestyle for such a long time.  That's when I came across this website and read about Dr. Hull's horrific experience with aspartame. 

I'm wondering, could this be the culprit?  Has anyone out there had a similar experience as mine?  I have ceased using all products containing artificial sweeteners as of today.  I'm assuming (from what I read) it takes a good month or so for your body to deplete aspartame from your system.  I'm hoping this is the case because I can't live like this.  Nerve pain is the worst!

Any comments or suggestions would be greatly appreciated.  Thank you!!!   : )

Last edited by Cal67 (03-26-2010 9:15 pm)

Re: peripheral neuropathy - aspartame link?

Well, my initial comment is: welcome on board! You are not alone, and this, sadly, is becoming a common reaction to aspartame. The research shows aspartame toxicity mimics MS, and if you've noticed, MS is more and more common these days. But I do not think all these diagnoses are correct; I think many of them, if not the majority of them, are aspartame side-effects.

If aspartame is used and the doctors cannot "see" what is at the root of health reactions such as yours, then remove the aspartame! The symptoms will go away with 4-6 weeks if this is aspartame induced. At the very least, once aspartame is removed, the true cause should rise to the surface. But SOMETHING has caused this, so go looking for that cause. Aspartame use is the first place to start.

Aspartame penetrates the brain, and this affects the body systems BIG TIME; the nervous system is affected, as research has proven this connection over and over again. Even the lab rats fed sucralose had hind leg paralysis, and those were in the corporate studies. Aspartame is far more toxic than sucralose.

So, you're on target, and stick with this. Once you have your answers clearly in front of you, you won't question aspartame's toxicity. You will have lived it!

Re: peripheral neuropathy - aspartame link?

Hi Dr. Hull,

Thank you for your response and for making me feel like I may finally be onto something here.  I have been aspartame/artificial sweetener free for 6 days now.  Surprisingly enough I haven't gone through any withdrawals as I have in the past when I've tried to stop drinking diet soda.  Perhaps because I am determined to get to the bottom of this painful and very scary nerve problem. 

I saw a neurologist yesterday and he determined that my symptoms were not consistent with MS or a brain tumor which made me feel better.  However, he couldn't offer up any reasonable explanation as to why I'm experiencing peripheral neuropathy.  He's running some more tests but outside of that he says he's baffled.  I asked him about mercury poisoning - he said that's impossible unless I'm eating fish from the local pond.  He doesn't believe in mercury exposure from amalgam fillings.  He didn't believe that vitamin deficiencies could necessarily cause it.  And he laughed at the possibility of aspartame poisoning claiming there was no scientific data to suggest such a thing.  I plan to prove him wrong!

I don't want to get ahead of myself, yet I feel as though the past 2 days haven't been as bad as the prior week.  My feet still feel hot (on the inside) and I still very much get the electric-like shocks in my legs, feet, wrists and hands yet the flare-ups feel a little less intense.  Are these similar symptoms you experienced yourself or anyone else you heard from?  And everything returned to normal once you detoxified? 

If this is truly the cause of my nerve pain, I swear I will do everything in my power to get you a spot on Larry King or the Today Show.  I will shout from the rooftops the truth behind the aspartame lies and convince everyone around me to buy your book and get themselves off of all artificial sweeteners, especially aspartame!  As a writer myself, I feel it's my job to inform people of the truth and will also write my doctors at Kaiser a well-informed, and to the point, letter about this growing problem.  How many people are they misdiagnosing with MS and putting on medication while they needlessly suffer???  I have lived with MS symptoms for nearly 2 weeks now and that's 2 weeks too long.  It's been a living hell not knowing what is happening with my body and if I'd be the same again and enjoy all the things I did before.  No one should have to live like this. 

Thank you so much, Dr. Hull!!!  I'll continue to keep you posted on my progress.  : )

Re: peripheral neuropathy - aspartame link?

You wrote: "And he laughed at the possibility of aspartame poisoning claiming there was no scientific data to suggest such a thing." Change doctors! You won't ever prove someone with that attitude, and so little respect for you, wrong. He didn't care when he told you that, and he won't care when you prove him wrong; his ego will be furious at you. Sorry to be so snippet, but I thought I could prove my doctor wrong - that was his outlook, too. Any real healer listens to their patients and does whatever possible to help them and honor their ideas. This is YOUR journey, not his!

I had fiery shooting pains run up my right leg when using aspartame. I've never had one pain since - and I've been cured for 17 years.

Sadly, all the "big media names" know of my work, and many have read my books. I have letters from some of them stating that this topic really needs to be out there, but they simply cannot do it - the big money owns them, the media stations, and they own the powers that be. They'd be taken off the air, hounded, and threatened.

One day, some day, this will be such common knowledge, people like your doctor will have some explaining to do. They can claim ignorance, but who wants to trust a doctor that ignorant? Can you imagine the lawsuits that will abound? The children who have been harmed by this? The military, even government officials who have been harmed?

This has really gone on far too long. So many people have been harmed. And all for money. To any good scientist, if one - JUST ONE - research result proves harm caused by a man-made chemical, that chemical should NEVER be allowed in the food supply. But sadly, people mean less than mega profits in our country today.

Don't get me started....I am glad that you have discovered this, and just remember this, you don't need to prove anything to your doc because you know MORE than your doc right now.

Re: peripheral neuropathy - aspartame link?

Luckily, those comments were made by the neurologist and not my regular doctor.  I'm hoping I don't have to see him again but I do plan on telling him about my aspartame poisoning in explicit details, if that's what causing my symptoms.

I find it odd that doctors tell pregnant women, such as my niece, to stay off artificial sweeteners especially aspartame during their pregnancy.  Hmmmm... so let me get this straight, there's nothing wrong with aspartame or as they say, no scientific data to suggest so, however they apparently know enough to warn pregnant women to stay away from it?  Whah???  Sounds like a guilty verdict to me.

I agree with you 100% - greed, money and power drive these corporations to put our lives at risk so they can get rich off our misery.  I know some local media folks in my area that I can contact about my story once I get better.  I'll do everything in my power to get the word out even if it's just a local story.    I hope this is the cause -- I just want to feel normal again.

Last edited by Cal67 (04-03-2010 9:06 pm)

Re: peripheral neuropathy - aspartame link?

Dr. Hull, has there ever been a (successful) class action suit filed against Monsanto in regards to the safety of aspartame?

Re: peripheral neuropathy - aspartame link?

Most people do not know this, but several lawsuits have been filed against the NutraSweet Company, were won by the plaintiffs, and were "settled" out of court with gag orders. So the public does not know about these, but they are there. Class action law suits have been talked about, but it takes a very wealthy lawyer to be able to finance the years, probably decades, the legal games will spend in the judges' chamber. Big Money and Big G

Re: peripheral neuropathy - aspartame link?

Hi Dr. Hull,

Just to give you an update on my progress.  It's been nearly two months now since I've stopped using any products containing aspartame or other artificial sweeteners.  The nerve shock feelings in my feet, hands and left knee are still present but the sensation of walking on hot coals has subsided quite a bit.  I'm sure every person recovers at various rates and that recovery may take longer for those who used aspartame for lengthier amounts of time.  I'm hoping that's the case here and that the worst I have to do is wait it out.  My idiot doctor told me that since they couldn't find anything wrong with me that he recommended I seek a Psych consult.  Whatever!  I told him thank you but no thank you and that I would start taking anti-depressants as soon as he did.  I heard this is the typical response by doctors whenever they can't find anything wrong because they're too afraid to think outside the box. 

Anyway, I got to thinking that perhaps my fatty liver could have something to do with storing the neurotoxins due to it not operating at full capacity.  As you're aware, the livers' function is to disperse poisons and toxins from our body but when the liver is compromised, such as in the case of fatty liver disease, it's unable to function efficiently.  This could answer why some people take longer than others to recover.  I'm starting a liver-cleansing diet (Dr. Sandra Cabot) this week to work on getting my liver back on track.  The diet lasts about 2-3 months and really helped me last year when I suddenly had a bout of atopic dermatitis.  Not only did it take it away, it also returned my liver to normal size and took off a healthy amount of weight.

So --- that's where I'm at.  Any thoughts, comments or suggestions would be greatly appreciated.  : )

Thanks Dr. Hull.  Keep up the great work!!!  : )

Re: peripheral neuropathy - aspartame link?

What a wonderful testimony of the facts that the big industries are trying to hide. I just got on here today. But I learned of the effects that aspartame had on our bodies almost a year ago. It has taken this long for the effects of horrible seizures and memory loss to fall away. I am so thankful to feel like a new person again. I tell my story everywhere I go. yikes)

Re: peripheral neuropathy - aspartame link?

Cal67 - LOVE YOUR POST! Spot on, too!!!  The formaldehyde from the methanol in aspartame is VERY toxic to the liver, and most people get reactions in the liver and in the blood when it is not cleansed out. Yes, the liver detox and all detoxing will speed your recovery up. Cleaning the body is what we ALL should do, anytime, all the time.

DKelly78 - I have so little patience with the general medical community, the marketers of this diet stuff, and with the consumers who doubt that aspartame toxicity is real. When I work with people like you and Cal67 who have turned their lives around and restored their health when they stop using aspartame, I honor those people first and foremost above any corporate science, above the politics of greed, and above any and all Doubting Thomases.

I am an aspartame victim myself who is totally healthy today, so I have walked the walk. If a man-made food additive causes just ONE person to be critically ill, it should be taken off the market. Ah, the politics of greed at its finest. Sadly, when will this ever end?  How many people have to suffer? How many people have to be told they are crazy when it's the aspartame? And think of the children who don't know what's happening to them. The poor little ones can't figure this out like an adult can. Sad. So sad.

Re: peripheral neuropathy - aspartame link?

I thought you and your readers might be interested in a diet soda that I just discovered at my local grocery store called Zevia.  It contains absolutely no harmful artificial sweeteners or preservatives and comes in an array of flavors.  The ingredients for their cola flavor are:  stevia, erythritol, natural caramel, natural tartaric acid, citric acid, kola nut extract, natural caffeine, annatto and ginger root.  I've tried nearly all the flavors but cola and black cherry are my favorites.  The best part is there's no bitter after taste like you can get when using Stevia. 

Dr. Hull, is there anything you can see in these ingredients that you would consider harmful?  I hope not because I'm happy I'm finally able to enjoy an occasional soda again.

I've attached their website for your reference.  Now if they can just make some gum that tastes as good as this.

http://www.zevia.com

On a side note, my friend who's 6 months pregnant, told me that she recently attended a class at Kaiser for pregnant women with gestational diabetes and they are telling pregnant women to stay away from Stevia because it's dangerous and to use aspartame.  They were even touting Crystal Light as the beverage of choice.  My friend said she asked the instructor of the dangers of aspartame and the woman laughed it off saying that it was all unfounded accusations with no scientific proof to back it up.  She then went on to tell everyone that Stevia has never been studied for long term use and that it was very likely toxic to people especially pregnant women --- and then went on to plug Crystal Light a dozen more times.  She said she was very upset after the class and didn't believe a word of it.  She also thought it was odd how the instructor was pushing Crystal Light so much, as if Kaiser has some stake in the company.  I belong to Kaiser and intend on writing to their corporate office but I'm not sure if it'll do any good.  Even my neurologist laughed off the notion that my nerve problems were related to my aspartame intake.  Anyway, just thought you might want to know about that.  Very frustrating to say the least.

Re: peripheral neuropathy - aspartame link?

When I hear stories like this one, I get so incredibly sad at the ignorance, arrogance, and apathy polluting our society today. What gall for this pregnancy coach to think and say what she did - I am speechless at such STUPIDITY.

Speechless.

Thank you for sharing this story - really, thank you. I hope every pregnant mom out there reads this. And we wonder why autism is at epidemic levels???

STUPIDITY.

Stevia has been used for over 1500 years in South America and is safely used all over the world. No tests are needed - if we start down this road of arrogant thinking, then we might as well start testing basil, oregano, pepper corns, cumin, cinnamon. Man-oh-man  - I'm still speechless.

Your Zevia is fine - do you like the taste?  I can't wait for more products like this to become mainstream. Crystal Light is everywhere, but Zevia is not. What does that tell you?  What is happening to our world today? We are truly killing ourselves.

Re: peripheral neuropathy - aspartame link?

Dr. Hull, You took the words right out of my mouth -- stupidity.  If the medical industry wants to spread their lies, fine.  But don't put the life of a child in jeopardy particularly that of an unborn child.  It's plain reckless and inhumane.  I think this issue needs to go before Congress, proposing a bill that makes it illegal for doctors to recommend products containing aspartame to pregnant women.  I just find it odd that some doctors (OBGYN) strictly warn their patients to steer clear of aspartame (as in the case with my niece) yet there are still many others who, not only condone it's use, yet peddle it like they did with my friend at Kaiser by suggesting she and other pregnant women drink Crystal Light and stay away from Stevia.  That should be a lawsuit waiting to happen.

As far as the taste of Zevia diet soda, it's fantastic!  No bitter after taste whatsoever!  It tastes like regular soda to me.  I've tried just about every flavor available (orange, cola, ginger ale, black cherry, lemon lime) but Cola is my favorite.  To anyone reading this, if your local grocery store doesn't carry Zevia, then speak to the manager and recommend they do.  From everyone I've spoken to from coast to coast, it shouldn't be too difficult to find.  Let's support this company and send a message to all those other soda companies that we will no longer accept their poison.  Power in numbers.  smile

Re: peripheral neuropathy - aspartame link?

I hope that one day sooner than later aspartame will be exposed for the toxic substance it was known to be as early as the 1960s. What are we doing to one another? Why would the mega profits made from aspartame be more important than human lives? What has happened to our human race?

Big changes need to happen in our food industry and in our country. All doctors should know by basic instinct that any man made, unnatural chemical is not meant for human consumption, particularly over a long period of time and definitely NOT during pregnancy.  Big changes must come because if they don't, the future of a strong society is truly at risk.

Re: peripheral neuropathy - aspartame link?

Cal67 wrote:

I'm hoping somebody can help me with this.  Sorry this is so long.  I'm a writer so it's one of my weaknesses.  : )

I drink anywhere from 1-2 diet soda's a day.  I hate to admit it but I feel like an addict if I don't have my Diet Pepsi or Diet Dr. Pepper by mid-day and/or at night.  It's like liquid crack.  Same goes for my sugarless gum (Extra).  I'm probably chewing gum about 2/3 of the day, every day!  There are probably other sources of artificial sweeteners I'm getting into my body without knowing it but those two are most common.  I've increased my intake of diet soda within the past 6-12 months for whatever reason but I never drink more than 2 in a day.

So.... about 2 months ago I started to experience an electric-like shock running alongside my big toe towards my nail whenever I would rub up against the nerve.  My doctor just blew it off saying my shoe was probably aggravating it.  About a week later my other big toe started feeling the same.  Before long, my left index finger started getting the nerve shock whenever I touched it just right.  It even has one little area of numbness around the knuckle.  Fast forward to this past week, my entire body feels achy and fatigued, especially my legs!  Just walking across the parking lot the other day I felt like I had just ran 5 miles.  And now both feet and hands (wrists) get electric-like shocks if I tap them just right. 

My doctor said it appears to him it's a form of peripheral neuropathy but he doesn't know why.  He ran numerous blood tests over the past several days to rule out certain things.  My blood glucose, B12, TSH, white count, ALT, SED rate and a few autoimmune panels were just fine.  My serum folate (folic acid) was about 3 points high but other than that most of the tests are within range.  I'm still waiting for my Thiamine results to come back. 

I spoke to a friend of mine who has MS and he said symptoms are different for everyone but he felt it would never come on that quick.  I began to think of what is my daily routine (my diet) that could cause something like this.  I over-looked it time and time again because drinking diet soda and chewing gum has been a part of my lifestyle for such a long time.  That's when I came across this website and read about Dr. Hull's horrific experience with aspartame. 

I'm wondering, could this be the culprit?  Has anyone out there had a similar experience as mine?  I have ceased using all products containing artificial sweeteners as of today.  I'm assuming (from what I read) it takes a good month or so for your body to deplete aspartame from your system.  I'm hoping this is the case because I can't live like this.  Nerve pain is the worst!

Any comments or suggestions would be greatly appreciated.  Thank you!!!   : )

Aspartame and most likely High-Fructose corn syrup your body seems to be addicted to. Many side effects ........http://www.sweetpoison.com/articles/0706/aspartame_symptoms_submit.html

http://www.ehow.com/how_2083395_avoid-h … syrup.html

http://www.thenutritionreporter.com/fru … ngers.html