What Happens to Aspartame in the Human Body?

In a previous article, we discussed various artificial sweeteners and some of their pros and cons. In this

article we are going to get a little more in-depth as to what exactly happens within the human body

when the artificial sweetener aspartame is consumed. This article is not meant to try to sway anyone

one way or another on their stance concerning aspartame, but only to give you the facts.

During the digestion process, aspartame is broken down into its components, the amino acids aspartic

acid, phenylalanine, and the chemical methanol. The two amino acids are utilized for their normal

purposes, but with methanol a problem occurs.

Animals and humans have what are known as peroxisomes in each cell, and they are designed to

detoxify a variety of harmful chemicals. Within these peroxisomes is catalase, an enzyme which helps

turn the methanol into formaldehyde, then additional enzymes convert the formaldehyde into harmless

formic acid. The problem here though, is that this conversion of formaldehyde into formic acid does not

happen in humans, only animals.

Now, there is dangerous formaldehyde within the body which can accumulate in certain areas, such

as the brain, causing cellular and degenerative damage. Formaldehyde metabolism can lead to the

production of the waste product formate, which can accumulate and lead to metabolic acidosis, leading

to blindness, kidney damage or death. Now clearly this will only happen if large amounts of aspartame

are consumed, or something happens within the body which fails to prevent metabolic acidosis.

Yes, methanol does occur naturally in some foods, however, it is bonded to a fiber which keeps it out of

the bloodstream, allowing it to safely pass through the body.

I hope this gives you a more clear idea of what goes on in your body when aspartame is consumed.

Again, we are not trying to sway anyone’s opinion of this artificial sweetener, we just want to present

the facts. The choice to continue consuming aspartame or not is up to you.

By: James Van Dyne

Stimulant-Free Energy

At Ze/Lin and at, we’re not too fond of having to rely on stimulants for our everyday

energy needs. Every day, millions and millions of people rush to the nearest coffee house or brew up

some java at home in order to “get ready for the day.” How many times have you heard (or said), “Not

until I’ve had my coffee”? With coffee being such a staple, is there a better way to “get your fix” during

the day?

The answer of course, is yes.

A great way to start off your day and provide energy that lasts with no crash is with a fresh smoothie

or juice. There are dozens of different recipes to choose from, and each offers a wide range of healthy

benefits in addition to improving energy levels.

Stimulants may provide quick energy now, but it doesn’t last long and you will undoubtedly feel groggy

later, probably wanting more of the stimulant. The human body also adapts very quickly to stimulants,

and that means more and more will be required to illicit the same response. Stimulants do not fix the

problem, they merely postpone it.

By providing your body with healthy, raw foods in a smoothie or juice, you are giving your body a

steady, slow-burning fuel source that will last and last. Raw foods are also jammed with enzymes, which

improve digestion and increase nutrient uptake. Enzymes from raw sources give your digestive system a

break, and a major cause of sluggishness and low energy is an overworked digestive system.

If you’re in the neighborhood, stop in to Ze/Lin for a fresh smoothie or juice to start your day off right.

Or you can always start juicing right in the comfort of your own home. Either way, adding a healthy

smoothie or juice to your day will give you energy that lasts, without the negatives of a stimulant.

By: James Van Dyne

Benefits Of The Coconut

The coconut has been a staple in the diets of many islanders and has been steadily gaining popularity

in our culture today. Once you get past the hard, hairy shell of this giant nut, you will find a nutritious

core which provides healthy fats, fiber, vitamins and minerals. The coconut is so highly valued in some

cultures that it has been given the name, “Tree of Life.”

Just a few of the many benefits of the coconut are as follows:

• Provides a quick energy source

• Boosts endurance for improved physical performance

• Improves digestion

• Heart healthy and helps to reduce cholesterol

• Completely non-toxic to humans

This list can keep going on and on. Other than the entire nut, you will generally find coconut products

such as oil or water.

The fats in coconut used to be considered unhealthy, but research has proven this to be incorrect.

Coconut oil is actually made up of medium chain fatty acids, which unlike long chain fatty acids, actually

aid the metabolism because they are burned for energy instead of being stored as body fat. Medium

chain fatty acids (also known as medium chain triglycerides) are also beneficial for lowering the risk of

heart disease and atherosclerosis (the hardening of the arteries) and do not have a negative impact on


Coconut water also offers some great benefits. It contains easily digested carbohydrates and

electrolytes, making it a better option for hydration than typical sports drinks. The next time you go out

for a run or need a refreshing drink on a hot day, reach for a coconut water. Because of it’s high potassium content it’s been dubbed “nature’s sports drink.”

While we don’t often find the coconut at the typical grocery store, it offers so many healthy and

nutritional benefits it’s worth tracking down. Enjoy a little coconut oil, water or do like they do at Ze/Lin

and incorporate it into your daily smoothie for a nutritional pick-me-up.

By: James Van Dyne

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