Topic: Pretty sure that aspartame is making me sick, have dumped it out today
This is slightly long, please bear with me. :]
I started drinking diet pepsi in 2006 when I was suffering with constant BV that the doctors said regular soda or juice was causing. In the first year of drinking this, I noticed that my ears would ring a little bit then go away. The doctor told me it was an inner ear issue and sent me to a ENT. They did find out that I had vestibular issues.
In 2007 I started gaining weight, up to 40lbs, and felt a little tired. I felt so tired that going to the store to get groceries was a huge task. I complained to my doctor and he ran a thyroid panel and checked out my hormones. Everything was OK. Right around this time my eating started to go out of control. I had to have something from the bakery every day. Soon, my BV problems returned. So I switched off to sugar free treats.
In 2008 I had stopped gaining weight, but did not lose the extra 40 lbs I had put on. My legs started swelling up, and my ankles would swell too. Soon I developed lymphodema. My lower ankles would swell so badly, I would get skin breaks and infections would develop into cellulitis. My doctor told me to start on a low carb way of eating, and told me to continue on with diet beverages. In fact the list of food they gave me included diet beverages. He told me if I lost weight the lympodema would get better. Despite losing 30lbs, the leg swelling continued, even when I cut down the diet soda and drank more water. It was truly a mystery to me and the doctor. They sent me to a cardiologist and they found nothing that could cause the swelling. I was basically sent home and told I may have to live with this. They put me on diuretics. I stopped these diuretics because they were depleting my potassium so bad and making me ill. I just got into a habit where at the end of the day I spent it with my feet up. My activities ended for the day around 7pm, because by then, the swelling usually kicked in.
In 2009, the ear ringing came back but a little louder. I ignored it, thinking it was just my inner ear as the ENT told me.
In the fall of 2010, I developed an all over sick feeling in my body. I constantly felt like I had a flu. My legs hurt so bad I can't walk or stand to sit. The back of my neck started to hurt so bad and the tension and pain would spread down my arms. Then I started having my vision blur and the light in the room would dim. Some times, I would stand up and lose balance and need to sit back down. These spells would come and go, at least maybe once a week. I went back to the doctor who said it was hormones and that I was starting to go into perimenopause. He instructed me to go on hormones at this time, but I refused them.
Then my neck started getting worse and the doctor told me I had something called toriticollis? I really started to wonder then how in the world I would just develop torticollis out of the blue. They gave me muscle relaxer to take. The nurse handed me one to take in the office since my husband was driving. It was supposed to be non narcotic. "flexiril". Let's just say this much, by the time we got home I could not remember my mother in law's name, or what day or year it was. I threw the script in the trash and started using heat pads and back massager. But to this day it still does not take it away. I just live with it.
In January 2011, I began suffering from ear ringing so loudly, that I sat with my hands over my ears and screamed and cried. The dizziness became incredibly worse. I went to the store one day, got in the door and walked over to the magazine section and felt as if I was going to pass out right there. I couldn't breathe, I felt weak, and my legs were going out from under me. My husband had to walk me to the car and off to the ER we went. They first told me I had a panic attack, then they said it was inner ear. Sent me home with medications. One of them being meclizine which makes me feel horrible but takes the edge off the dizziness. But the ear ringing, goes on.
In late January my vision starts getting worse. I can't focus my eyes on something, things start blurring more. Back to the doctor I go. A blood test shows for the first time in my life that my blood sugar level is "borderline". I am sent for a CTscan, and they find nothing. I go for MRI, they find nothing. They keep blaming these symptoms on my ears or my nerves.
In my research I found that many people with vestibular problems do suffer some of these symptoms but mine are so extreme that it seems unreal to me.
In March 2011, my husband was on the way to work one morning and I was getting lunches together. All of the sudden dizziness came on, I was so light headed I felt like my head was not attached to my body. I felt like I was slipping away. I felt like I was dying. I struggled to walk to the bathroom downstairs holding on to the rail. I couldn't breathe. My husband comes in and tries to talk to me. I hear him, but I can't respond to him. My mouth would not work. My entire mouth went numb. I felt like I had to struggle to form words to speak to him. I literally felt like I was dying in that moment. He ran and got me a meclizine, and 2 hours later I'm back to normal, although a bit light headed.
As March went on, I start to have these spells of breathlessness. I can't catch my breath and I feel like I can't fill up my lungs with air. This would go on all day, and when I laid down at night I propped my pillows up worried I would stop breathing and die. I felt so breathless laying in bed. As I drift to sleep I'd feel a JOLT that would hit me suddenly and I'd wake up feeling a panic. It was so weird. I still get this time to time.
Beginning of April I have another one of those bad spells like I had that morning when my husband was on his way to work except this time I'm home alone. I somehow pull myself out of it and it goes away.
Toward mid April, I'm going over the things I eat in my diet, I have cut out so much process stuff, I basically eat very low carb with lean meats, no red meat. I run out of diet soda, and we had a freak snow storm here (I'm in the mountains) and we can't go get my soda. The hours pass so I start drinking water. In late evening I notice that the ear ringing was not as loud as usual and the light headed feelings were not as intense. I notice I start to feel more present in my conscious state and things around me don't look as dark/dimmed, or dulled.
Next day I get some diet soda and after one glass I paid attention to how I feel. My neck started to tighten, I felt very light headed, a little breathless, and the pressure and ringing in my ears started to get worse.
I have been doing so much research, staying up late despite my eyes hurting from the computer screen. I'm starting to believe that aspartame may be poisoning me. In fact I hope that this is what is causing all my trouble because I'm terrified that I'll never feel good again. I'm 40 years old, and I feel like I'm so much older. I have so little energy I can barely function. As I write this tonight, I just feel like I'm dying. To be honest with all of you here, I have already gotten my affairs in order a year ago because I keep thinking I won't wake up some morning and I have a 7 year old little girl I don't know if I see grow up. So I hope that this is aspartame poisoning. Crazy to say, right?
I've clued my husband in on all of this and have linked him to Dr Hull's page and he poured out the soda today. He won't touch it again either, he said. He has gotten me some zevia to try tomorrow, to help combat soda craving and caffiene headaches.
Thank you Dr Hull for your info and when I can I'll get your book. I'm scared as to what the detox will feel like. But at this point I got to do something.
One thing I need to add to this is, I have been consuming at least 1 - 2 liters daily of diet pepsi.
Last edited by Montana (04-20-2011 1:24 am)