Posted: 20 February 2008
Five seizure victims lie in a Loveland, Colorado Mosaic group home regularly being medicated with anti-seizure medication. Despite evidence linking aspartame to seizure disorders, one worker purchased for them Crystal Lite sweetened with aspartame. Medical testimony abounds that aspartame triggers seizures and reacts with anti-seizure medications. All five patients have frequent seizures, are labeled mentally retarded so they can't communicate clearly, one can't walk, one has a "No resuscitate" order and another one is blind. Mosaic management had been notified of the aspartame issue by the attending LPN who was fired for bringing this issue to light in an effort to protect the patients.
In a study on seven infant monkeys fed aspartame, five had grand mal seizures and one died. ( See http://www.dorway.com/raoreport.txt ) This evidence was presented in congressional hearings and in 1986 the Community Nutrition Institute petitioned the FDA to ban aspartame because of the seizures it caused and the people blinded from the methyl alcohol aspartame releases. Big business and Donald Rumsfeld ended up trumping science and consumer safety. As a result, aspartame consumption has brought disability and death to innocent consumers worldwide. At the time that aspartame was approved by the FDA, Rumsfeld was CEO of G.D. Searle, maker of aspartame.
Yvonne-Ruth Longacre, the LPN who cared for these five seizure victims, recently wrote Hawaii State Representative Josh Green, Chairman of the House Health CommitteeRepresentative Green:Mo< "I am a health care provider who lost her job because I labeled 3 Crystal Light drink mixes as poison. I work for a Christian organization called Mosaic whose Mission statement is, "In partnership with people who have disabilities, Mosaic provides supports and advocates that all may realize God's gift of wholeness of life."
"I worked as a Direct Support Associate in Eastwood, a group home that serves 5 disabled men with seizure disorders. I worked 3, 12 hour, awake, overnight shifts by myself. I prepare all 3 meals as outlined by menus prepared by Sefra. She does all the shopping for the home. When Sefra was being trained for purchasing the groceries, she brought home 3 cans of Crystal Light drink mixes that contain aspartame/NutraSweet. I labeled them as poison because they cause Grand Mal Seizures. One of our clients has Grand Mal Seizures on a regular basis. One time he had 4 Grand Mal Seizures in a 24-hour period and had to be sent to the Emergency Room. When I labeled the cans as poison, Sefra took it as a personal affront to her. My supervisors called me into a corrective action meeting and told me never to label the cans as poisonous again. I gave them the video "Sweet Misery: A Poisoned World" to watch. They didn't watch it and returned it with a sticky note attached saying, "Yvonne, you need to take this home. We are not interested, but thank you." Ever since that day Sefra refused to talk about anything nutritional. She just says, "She doesn't want to talk about it." I had talked to her about the Maker's Diet as found in Leviticus 11. She thought that was religious and I was trying to convert them. My goal was to return my clients to health.
"In the past, I worked as a LPN and took the Hippocratic Oath that states, "that I will lead my life and practice my art in uprightness and honor, That whatever house I enter, it shall be for the good of the sick to the utmost of my power, that I will hold myself aloof from wrong; that I will exercise my art solely for the CURE of my patients, and will give no drug and perform no operation for a criminal purpose." I could not conscientiously give a product such aspartame/NutraSweet to cause harm to patients that already have seizure disorders.
"I had written an appeal to Mosaic's Regional Vice-President, Coleen Abeta, that included the video, "Sweet Misery" and a number of documents about Aspartame Poisoning, she sent me the following letter stating, "First of all I would like to thank you for all the materials you sent to me. I understand your passion for what you believe. In light of the circumstances and documentation I have reviewed, I support the termination. Thank you for your time of service."
"These 5 aspartame victims all have seizure disorders and one is blind, and all cannot talk to communicate their feelings. They are all mentally retarded and one cannot walk. If aspartame would have been removed, their need to be placed in a group home wouldn't have occurred.
"Without me being there to protect them, I'm sure that they will continue using it, as the worker who prepares the menus consumes diet soda."
The FDA's list of 92 documented symptoms names 4 types of seizures triggered by aspartame. ( See http://www.mpwhi.com/92_aspartame_symptoms.pdf ) There is 50% phenylalanine in the aspartame molecule, which, as an isolate, is neurotoxic and floods the brain. It lowers the seizure threshold and depletes serotonin. In Aspartame Disease: An Ignored Epidemic by H. J. Roberts, M.D. ( http://www.sunsentpress.com ), Roberts gives pathophysiologic considerations and explains that aspartame and its metabolites may cause or aggravate convulsions through various mechanisms. He mentions altered neurotransmitter concentrations within the brain (especially serotonin and norepinephrine), the effects of methyl alcohol, and exaggerated hypoglycemia. Dr. Roberts states that aspartame and its breakdown products can suppress the synthesis of several neurotransmitters that tend to prevent seizures.
He further states: "Other mechanisms could contribute to aspartame-induced seizures. They include formaldehyde toxicity (from methanol), altered monoamine receptors in the cerebral cortex, and loss of the protective effect of L-DOPA.
"Alterations in brain water, sodium and potassium also may play a role. They were noted in both humans and animals after methanol intake, along with vascular stasis. These assume considerable pertinence in view of the multiple cellular interactions involving calcium, sodium, potassium and chloride that are known to trigger focal epilepsy (Dichter 1987).
"Additionally, altered extracellular fluid concentrations of various amino acids, notably glutamate and aspartate, play an important role in the pathogenesis of hypoxemic and epileptic brain injury."
"Tilson et al (1987) found that aspartame administration to rats significantly reduced the number of cortex stimulations required to induce tonic-clonic seizures. They suggested that "aspartame may facilitate the development of seizures activity" under some circumstances.
"Wurtman and Maher (1987) noted that the disproportionate elevation of brain phenylalanine concentrations after aspartame or phenylalanine, compared to tyrosine levels, diminish brain dopamine release. This enhancesthe susceptibility of rodents to seizures induced by pentylenetetrazole, fluorothyl or electroconvulsive shock. (A problem is interpreting studies involving large doses of phenylalanine given to rodents resides in the fact that tyrosine, the antidote, is also increased owing to their high phenylalanine hydroxylase activity.)
"Maher and Pinto (l987) reported that aspartame significantly lowers the threshold to seizures induced by pentylenetetrazole in nonfasted mice. A comparable response occurred with equimolar phenylalanine, but not equimolar aspartic acid or methanol. Conversely, the administration of tyrosine - alone, or with phenylalanine or aspartame - elevated the seizure threshold in this model, as did co-administering valine (another neutral amino acid)."
Dr. Roberts also emphasizes the relationship between hypoglycemia and epileptic seizures, and aspartame actually induces hypoglycemia. It also can precipitate diabetes and interacts with insulin. As to anti-seizure medication, Dr. Roberts says that Phenytoin (Dilantin) is a key drug in managing epilepsy. Whenconvulsions are associated with or aggravated by aspartame products, the patient confronts several dilemmas. First, the dose of phenytoin is likely to be increased, possibly to the point of toxicity. Second, other anti-epilepsy drugs may be added, thereby increasing the potential for side effects. Third, the continuation of these drugs in high doses could result in "rebound" toxicity after stopping aspartame consumption. The apparent potentiation of valproic acid in Depakene and Depacote, two other antiepileptic drugs, was personally reported to Dr. Roberts by a 51-year old man who drank considerable amounts of diet cola daily. When his physician increased the dose, he became comatose and required hospitalization.
My own neurologist knows aspartame triggers seizures and insisted one of his patients give it up. Aspartame is very addictive, since aspartame contains 10% methanol, which is classified as a narcotic. Daily consumption causes chronic methanol poisoning that affects the dopamine system of the brain causing the addiction. The woman was consuming so much aspartame that the neurologist said she simply "went crazy" and they put her in a mental hospital. After two weeks, the problems from withdrawal stopped as did the seizures and she was fine. He mentioned he had tried every anti-seizure medication to no avail. It should be noted that it is the depletion in serotonin that triggers psychiatric and behavioral problems, and aspartame interacts with all anti-depressants.
Fortunately, Yvonne has full knowledge of the problems caused by aspartame consumption and did what she could to keep her patients free of NutraSweet. She, of course, has no control over the doctor who prescribes anti-seizure medication for their patients. Many neurologists have been given this vital information on aspartame but have not done any further research or do not want to acknowledge the veracity of the research given to them, but they too have a responsibility to the patient.
It is also interesting to note that the Supreme Court of Israel upheld a lower district court conviction of malpractice that had resulted from ignorance of the current medical literature (Fishman 1998). Israel's Supreme Court's judicial opinion in this matter asserted that doctors have "personal responsibility in their professional duties to remain updated with medical literature" and to be aware of alternative diagnoses, opinions and recommended treatments.
In this home is a co-worker, 24 hour old Sefra, who drinks diet soda, prepares the menus and shops for this home. When Yvonne explained to Sefra that aspartame triggers seizures after purchasing Crystal Light drink mixes that contain it, she labeled them poison which they are. The Crystal Light Company has been notified many, many times that aspartame is a chemical poison and they have refused to remove it, obviously realizing its addictive. In the aspartame documentary Sweet Misery you see a case where a patient in the hospital explains she can't be given this toxin and has it marked in the records. She was given Crystal Light anyway and became a Code Blue, and had to be resuscitated. If this happen to the patient with the no resuscitate order he dies!
Yvonne gave this aspartame documentary to Ambosia Guthry, her 22 year old supervisor, boss. It was returned without being seen with a note "we are not interested". She did everything she could to convince the young workers in this home you can't give a seizure-triggering drug to a seizure patient. They simply wouldn't listen. Nor would they listen to this LPN about nutrition. In fact, when Yvonne referred to the "Makers diet" in Leviticus 11 a worker stated this is "religious". Evidently, in this "Christian" organization home scripture is not to be mentioned.
Yvonne appealed her termination knowing without her being there no one would protect the patients. Mosaic's Regional Vice President, Collen Abeta, was sent a number of documents on how aspartame triggers seizures and the aspartame documentary Sweet Misery: A Poisoned World. She wrote back and said she supported the termination. There have also been some measures taken against Yvonne's unemployment for trying to save these patients.
In the Hippocratic Oath that Yvonne-Ruth Longacre took it states "and will give no drug and perform no operation for a criminal purpose". How could she allow an aspartame seizure victim to be given a poison that triggers seizures?
If I had been in the position of Coleen Abeta and given documentation on aspartame triggering seizures I would have immediately notified the physicians for these patients, thanked Yvonne for trying to save their life, and suspended the young women who refused the research and wanted to use a poison after being notified. When those responsible to solve the problem ARE the problem there simply is no excuse.
Russell Blaylock, MD, neurosurgeon, said in Health & Nutrition Secrets to Save Your Life, http://www.russellblaylockmd.com about aspartame: "This particularly nasty substance should have never even been approved for human use. In fact, had it not been for some fancy footwork by those in power in the FDA, it never would have. Early experiments using low, medium and high doses with aspartame all found dramatic tumor increases in test animals. These included brain, pancreas and breast tumors, and tumors of the testes, thyroid and prostate. Experiments also demonstrated a direct correlation between intake quantity and tumor incidence.
"Several possibilities explain the high rate of cancer in these animals. One is that aspartame breaks down in the body into a substance called Diketopiperazine or DKP, which chemically closely resembles a group of cancer-causing chemicals. Aspartame also contains methanol, which breaks down in the body into formaldehyde and formic acid. Formaldehyde had been shown to accumulate near DNA, causing serious damage that is accumulative. That means that drinking even one diet cola a day can cause formaldehyde buildup in cells, so that the amount of the toxin increases daily.
"There is also evidence that aspartame can worsen depression in those already suffering from the condition, may cause weight gain and insomnia, worsen diabetic control, aggravate multiple sclerosis and other neurological diseases, precipitate migraine headaches, TRIGGER SEIZURES, cause BLINDNESS, and may also damage a fetus' developing brain. One component of aspartame is aspartic acid, a known excitotoxin. Even small concentrations in gum have been shown to precipitate headaches.
"I strongly suggest avoiding all products containing aspartame, including NutraSweet and Equal, as well as any other artificial sweetener brands that include aspartame."
I would remind Colleen Abeta of Proverbs 24:11-12 "Deliver those who are being taken away to death; and those staggering to the slaughter, O may you hold them back. In case you should say: "Look! We did not know of this" will not he himself that is making an estimate of hearts discern it, and he himself that is observing your soul know and certainly pay back to earthling man according to his activity."
Ms. Abeta, You know aspartame triggers seizures because you were given documentation. You should have been concerned and researched further. You should have been glad to have a documentary with world experts on aspartame to help you in helping those in Mosaic homes. I would reinstate Yvonne-Ruth Longacre to protect the victims or explain to these seizure victims' families what you have done. There is no excuse in going against someone who was doing her job to protect the lives of seizures patients. This issue will not go away until it is resolved.
Dr. Betty Martini, D.Hum.
Founder, Mission Possible World Health International
9270 River Club Parkway
Duluth, Georgia 30097
Aspartame Toxicity Center: http://www.holisticmed.com/aspartame