By Dean L. Jones, C.P.M.
The International Dairy Foods Association and the National Milk Producers Federation are in the process of getting governmental approval to change the standard of identity for milk and 17 other dairy products. Milk producers want to add artificial sweeteners such as aspartame and to not be required to indicate its use on their product packages. This will definitely make milk unsafe as placing a notorious carcinogenic into the mix, thereby largely endangering every consumers’ health, predominantly young people who rely on it for their morning cereal and school lunches to serve as a valued nutritional substance.
If the US Food and Drug Administration allows this change the word “milk” on the label could include aspartame, sucralose, or any other dangerous artificial sweetener. The deceitful issue by the milk industry is that the milk producers would not be required to list it on the package, but bury it in the ingredients. This practice will mainly be used in lower-calorie flavored milk products than the unflavored milk.
This chemical called Aspartame is highly toxic to the human body as it is primarily made up of aspartic acid and phenylalanine. The phenylalanine has been synthetically modified to carry a methyl group, which provides the majority of the sweetness. That phenylalanine methyl bond, called a methyl ester, is very weak, which allows the methyl group on the phenylalanine to easily break off and form methanol. The methanol created by aspartame does not bond to anything like pectin in the body to be safe, consequently it cannot be safely eliminated from the body. Methanol carries into susceptible body tissues like the brain and bone marrow, where the alcohol dehydrogenase (ADH) enzyme converts it into formaldehyde (main chemical for embalming fluid).
Recently, the American Heart Association reported new information about how sugary-filled beverages are to blame for about 183,000 deaths worldwide each year, including 133,000 diabetes deaths, 44,000 heart disease deaths and 6,000 cancer deaths. Among the 35 largest countries in the world, Mexico had the highest death rates associated with sugary beverage consumption. Mexican consumption per person of sugary beverages averages 24-ounces every day. Although Bangladesh rates as the lowest death rates from consuming sugary drinks, the United States of America ranks third, with an estimated 25,000 annual deaths from sweetened drinks. Interestingly, and quite disturbingly, the death rates associated with sweetened beverages were highest in those under the age of 45 years
As we approach the summer like months many eat tasty treats like some low-fat ice crèmes that have 2 teaspoons of sugar per scoop. Low-fat fruit yogurts (6 oz) are 4 teaspoons of processed sugar. The highly serious levels of processed sugar can be found as an example in a Dairy Queen Chocolate Malt that has 10+ teaspoons and its Peanut Butter Cup Blizzard has 15 teaspoons of processed sugar.
Dean Jones, Ethics Advocate, Southland Partnership Corporation (a public benefit organization), contributes his view on health attributes of packaged foods & beverages.