Posted: 31 December 2008
From: Dr. Betty Martini, D.Hum., Bettym19@mindspring.com
Date: Fri, 05 Dec 2008 18:18:10 -0500
Subject: National Federation of the Blind of Hawaii - Aspartame and Vision
I've notified the webmaster to take care of the issue you mentioned below.
I'm particularly happy that you wrote because it gives me the opportunity to explain the effect of NutraSweet on vision. You're in a position to help a lot of people regain their sight if they are using aspartame (Equal/Spoonful/NutraSweet/E951/Canderel, etc.).
You may remember that during prohibition thousands went blind or died on wood alcohol. This is what is in aspartame. It's a methyl ester which immediately becomes methanol or wood alcohol, and then converts to formaldehyde and formic acid in the retina of the eye and destroys the optic nerve. The medical text, Aspartame Disease: An Ignored Epidemic by H. J. Roberts, M.D., http://www.sunsentpress.com has a chapter on the eyes and goes through the many eye problems triggered by this deadly excitoneurotoxin from optic neuritis to macular degeneration to blindness.
On the show you may remember I spoke about an organic market that decided to help the effort by giving out thousands and thousands of free 16 page booklets titled "Killer Kola". At least 2000 people a day shopped there and a booklet was added to each bag. Some people came in and got handfuls of them. A couple of months later I opened the door and a woman fell in my arms crying "I was blind and now I can see." I didn't even have my address in the magazine. The owner called that day and said, "You're not going to believe what is going on down here. People are coming in by the thousands, calling and faxing, that they got off aspartame after reading the magazine and have woken up well from medical problems they had for years. Many had gone to physicians who couldn't diagnose their problems."
I went down to their establishment and the owner's wife handed me a stack of papers and said: "Someone came in and said to give these to you. Dr. Morgan Raiford before he died said if anyone actually does something to get aspartame off the market see that they receive these." Dr. Morgan Raiford was an ophthalmologist in Atlanta and "the specialist in methanol toxicity". He owned the Atlanta Eye Hospital which is still here under a different name. He died some years ago. In one of his papers he mentioned that if vision was in the "wet stage" it can return if the victim is warned in time. Over the years I've seen so many regain their sight because we got to them in time. In fact, I was on a TV Talk Show in Texas with Mary Reiff, an aspartame victim. She was using aspartame and having seizures. One day because of the seizures she wrecked her car and ended up in the hospital. Eventually she was declared legally blind. Off aspartame the seizures stopped. I had her on the show about a year later and her vision had been restored.
Joyce Wilson is another woman who went blind on aspartame, suffered methanol toxicity, diagnosed with MS and eventually died like an Alzheimer's victim. It was simply too late for her. In fact, I inherited her records. She was Aspartame Victims and Their Friends of Georgia. This is why I have spent 17 years warning the world. It's so important to warn aspartame victims in time to save them.
Here are a couple of Dr. Morgan Raiford's records:
May 20, 1987: FACTS ABOUT ASPARTAME
The above product is also manufactured as NutraSweet. This pharmological spin-off is as highly profitable item, with a growing market. These products are used as a sweetener, some 200 times as sweet as regular cane sugar.
This product has some highly toxic reactions in the human visual pathway and we are beginning to observe the tragic damage to the OPTIC NERVE, such as blindness, partial to total OPTIC NERVE ATROPHY. Once this destructive process has developed there is no return of visual restoration. We are beginning to see and observe another toxic reaction, which affects the central nervous system which is related to PHENYLALANINE LEVELS IN THE CENTRAL NERVOUS SYSTEM. These observations are more vague, however, it stimulates the damaging to the brain and the central nervous system, having the manifestations as PKU NEURO DAMAGE. Over 3000 cases have been reported and the FDA to date has ignored this existence.
HUMAN VISUAL PATHWAY DAMAGE
The human visual pathway admits ninety percent of our intellectual input to the brain and central nervous system. All of the learning processes are centered during ones life time. The mechanism of this tragic damage to the human visual system from this product is and has been known for over a decade that visual loss takes place. When this drug enters the digestive tract, largely the upper portion, this ASPARTAME molecule spins off a by product known as METHANOL or METHYL-ALCOHOL. This product enters the blood stream and when these portions reach the highly metabolic region of the OPTIC NERVE AND RETINA, PARTIAL ATROPHY CAN AND DOES TAKE PLACE. The vision can not do without oxygen and nutrition for more than ninety seconds without revealing some damage. Total loss of vision is present and there is no return. In the very early stages in which is referred to as the "wet stage", treatment can be given and will reserve the destructive pathology to the OPTIC NERVE and RETINA. This must be in the mind of the physician and he must understand the chemical ongoing process. The writer has seen many cases where the patent was allowed to go to the degrees of blindness, as this diagnosis of OPTIC NEURITIS was rendered, as the term IDIOPATHIC NEURITIS OF OPTIC NERVE was given, usually steroids until systemic gross body and facial moon developed.
This therapy has demonstrated the total lack of understanding of the basic lack of BIO-CHEMICAL PHYSIOLOGY AT THE MOLECULAR LEVEL.
The variability or onset of the OPTIC NERVE ATROPHY is of a type that one must first think of this pathology, and it requires a certain amount of listening to the patient. The quantity of symptoms vary with each patient.
Over the past year the writer has observed the fact that any portion of the central nervous system can and is affected. Since the chemical PHENYLALANINE is mixed up with some metabolic mess, we have seen symptoms of varying hue in the extremities, sensations of dullness of the intellect, visual shadows, evidence of word structure reversing and somehearing impairment is noted by the individual. This can and will in time cause problems in learning. The medical community must alert itself that we have a problem that has surfaced due to the factor of the drug industry. Parents must be alerted to the side reactions of this toxic product and its reactions.
Morgan B. Raiford, M.D. D.Sc (Med) OPHTHALMOLOGY
Letter to Shannon Roth dated 10/10/86 which further explains vision problems due to aspartame:
The first time that I had the opportunity to see the effects of methyl alcohol toxicity was in the years 1952-1953 that resulted visual damage to the optic nerves and retina in over 300 cases and death of over 30 persons.
In the cases of the use of Aspartame the loss of vision varied, first affection to the optic nerve fibers from loss of vision and atrophy of the optic nerve fibers. The central fibers (225,000) of the total (137,000,000) optic nerve fibers resulted in partial the extent of total blindness. (see enclosed paper on the Macula physiology, a paper that I presented in Houston, Texas, and Outline of the Macula function.) The macula area of the retina and optic nerve fibers are highly reactive to the toxicity of methyl alcohol because of these fibers and nerve cells require from four to six times as much oxygen and nutrition and the visual pathways peripheral nerves. These fibers and nerves (Tods and Cones) can not go without oxygen for more than 90 seconds without some visual loss. Aspartame is broken down by the upper portion of the digestive tract and methyl alcohol is then absorbed into the blood vessels of the region which travels through the bodies entire vascular system. This toxic effect causes extensive damage to the highly demanding metabolic requirements of the human visual pathway, ending with optic nerve atrophy as well as retinal starvation and visual loss.
The intensity of these toxic effects from the methyl alcohol spin-off causes impaired nerve damage that varies with intensity as to the amount of methyl alcohol the individual absorbs.
Beyond the extensive visual damage that aspartame can and does create, other organ systems are affected. Nerve damage to the arms, legs, central nerve impairment, resulting in impaired nerve function as well as neurosis and learning difficulties in school work as well as behavior(metabolic short circuits of the nerve/brain/visual cells)
The pressure put upon the Federal Drug Administration are well known. The Searle people are more interested in their greed factor of profits.
I have been told that this toxic methyl alcohol of aspartame has a market value of over $45,000,000. The human factor is being ignored and the moral is not presented.
This product Aspartame should be withdrawn from the market place and not for human use until the TOXIC METHYL ALCOHOL radical has been eliminated. Methyl alcohol has no place in a product, whole or in part, to be allowed to be produced by any manufacturer for human usage.
Sincerely, Morgan B. Raiford, M.D., D.Sc. (Med) Ophth
Here is another article you can read: "What's Blinding The World": http://www.dorway.com/blinding.txt
In l986 the Community Nutrition Institute in Washington, D.C. petitioned to have aspartame banned because so many people were going blind and having seizures. Here is an article from the Chicago Sun Times:
Subject: NUTRASWEET/BLINDNESS, Chi-Sun Times
CHICAGO SUN-TIMES, Friday, October 17, 1986
Consumer group links NutraSweet to blindness
By William Hines
Chief, Washington Bureau
Ban artificial sweetener, FDA is urged
WASHINGTON - Charging that aspartame - the widely used artificial sweetener marketed as NutraSweet - causes blindness, a consumer group yesterday petitioned the Food and Drug Administration to ban it.
The petition was another step in a long and so far fruitless campaign by the Washington based Community Nutrition Institute against aspartame, which also is sold in stores under the name Equal.
Three women who said their eyesight was seriously damaged or destroyed joined in the citizens' petition to the FDA, which they asked "to expeditiously remove [the] product from the market without an administrative hearing."
At a press conference called by the institute to announce this imminent-hazard petition, two of the women told of heavy use of aspartame-sweetened products and said their doctors had advised them the sugar substitute was the cause of their sight loss.
The NutraSweet Co., of Skokie, Ill., a subsidiary of Searle & Co., brushed off the institute's complaint as "simply another round in their repeated efforts to gain publicity for their thoroughly discredited views on aspartame."
A Washington-based group called the International Food Information Council said through its executive director, Thomas E. Stenzel, the allegations "that aspartame causes various side effects are not based on any scientific data or controlled clinical studies."
James S. Turner, a Washington lawyer representing the Community Nutrition Institute in the petition, said the eye damage to the women named in the complaint was "a direct, causally related event to their consumption of NutraSweet."
Both heavy users
Both women, Dana Cozad of St. Petersburg, Fla., and Joyce Wilson of Stockbridge, Ga., described themselves as heavy users of the sweetener.
Wilson, a real estate agent, said she no longer can take sales prospects to see property because her vision does not permit her to drive.
"It has cost me a lot, and I really want the public to know what a dangerous product it is," Wilson said.
Cozad said that vision loss struck her suddenly in the right eye while she was driving home and that lengthy surgery and other sight- saving efforts followed.
She said vision is gone in that eye, and - after she has spent 13 months on an aspartame-free diet - the condition of the left eye "remains relatively stable."
Both women said their physicians had ruled out causes other than aspartame for their sight loss.
Methyl alcohol blamed
Dr. H. J. Roberts of West Palm Beach, Fla., said methyl alcohol is a component of aspartame and is responsible for vision damage, which he termed "the most serious complication" of those arising from aspartame use.
Aspartame, which is described as a "natural" product, contains two amino acids, phenylalanine and aspartic acid, which are components of protein. Under certain storage conditions, the sweetener breaks down in part and methyl alcohol is a byproduct.
Roberts said the visual reaction to methyl alcohol in heavy users of aspartame is the same as in drinkers of moonshine whiskey in Prohibition days: "They go blind."
Of 360 patients he has diagnosed as having aspartame-related problems, Roberts said, about one-fourth had decreased vision or blindness, nearly half had severe headaches and substantial numbers had epileptic seizures, confusion or memory loss, extreme depression and marked personality change.
At FDA headquarters in Rockville, Md., spokesman William Grigg said the petition had been received but not yet studied.
Grigg recalled that Turner filed several interventions against aspartame in the past, none of which received favorable FDA action.
I'm sure the National Federation of the Blind have publications and if you could get the information far and wide a lot of people could regain their site. Unfortunately, aspartame is pushed on diabetics so when they lose their vision their physicians believe its due to diabetes when, in fact, its due to NutraSweet. In fact, aspartame actually can precipitate diabetes, simulates and aggravates diabetic retinopathy and neuropathy, destroys the optic nerve, causes diabetics to go into convulsions and even interacts with insulin. Diabetics are losing their limbs because of the free methyl alcohol. http://dorway.com/dorwblog/?page_id=589 The aspartame industry uses ludicrous excuses for the free methyl alcohol like there is more methanol in oranges than in aspartame. What they don't say is that in nature in fruits and vegetables methanol is always accompanied by ethanol, the antidote for methanol toxicity. Here is the journal article about it: Aspartame: Methanol and the Public Health by Dr. Woodrow Monte: http://dorway.com/dorwblog/?page_id=1000 Also, methanol binds to pectin in nature. Dr. Roberts has written many letters to the FDA about the "free" and unbound methanol in aspartame and they refuse to answer. Remember that the FDA gets over 50% of their funds from Big Pharma. The IFIC mentioned in the Chicago article defending the manufacturer is a notorious front group.
Incidentally, it has been reported from an organization in Hawaii that an informant from Pfizer said that Dilantin had been reformulated and contains aspartame unlabeled. Dilantin is used for seizures and aspartame is a seizure triggering drug. The information we have received is that people in Hawaii are having more seizures on the drug and aspartame symptoms such as vision problems and male sexual dysfunction.
While the FDA is now simply Big Pharma's Washington Branch Office, it wasn't always that way. The FDA themselves tried to have the original manufacturer of Searle indicted for fraud but both US Prosecutors hired on with the defense team and the statute of limitations expired. Then they revoked the petition for approval. Don Rumsfeld was CEO of Searle and said he would call in his markers and get it on the market anyway. He did this through political chicanery and its discussed in the aspartame documentary, Sweet Misery: A Poisoned World, http://www.soundandfury.tv
Over 30 years ago, FDA toxicologist Dr. Jacqueline Verrett, who also testified to Congress that aspartame has never been proven safe, wrote the book Eating May Be Hazardous To Your Health: The Case Against Food Additives. Even then she summed up by saying, "What can be done to restore to consumers their right to safe food regardless of economic and political interests? . . . Probably the best solution, as some members of Congress have suggested, is to abolish the FDA and start over with a completely new agency free of some of the political pressures. . . . When science and the public interest win out, it is invariably only after the government has been pushed to the wall by consumer advocates and other public pressure."
The FDA is responsible for every case of blindness due to aspartame because they know it blinds and refused to ban it when they were petitioned to do so for that reason. When those responsible to solve the problem ARE the PROBLEM, its a sad commentary. Dr. James Bowen told the FDA over 20 years ago: "..The only responsible action would be to immediately take aspartame off the market, fully disclose its toxicities, offer full compensation to the injured, public and criminally prosecute anyone who participated in the fraudulent placement of aspartame on the marketplace." Imagine the millions of people worldwide who suffer blindness or vision impairments who could see again or improve their sight if they only knew to get off aspartame!
Thank you so much for calling in to the program and getting in touch. If I can ever help please let me know. You have the ability to help in many ways, publishing to get consumers off aspartame in time and regain their sight, and working to get Hawaiian legislators to get involved , sponsor the resolution and bill to ban aspartame, so the beautiful Hawaiian islands will be free of this deadly addictive excitoneurotoxic carcinogenic drug. Your organization can make a difference. I'll send you a list by separate email. You can also make the aspartame documentary available to your organization, to those who can see it, Sweet Misery: A Poisoned World, http://www.sunsentpress.com because it tells the whole story of how this poison got marketed for human consumption. For those on aspartame, neurosurgeon Russell Blaylock, MD's detox program is www.wnho.net/wtdaspartame.htm His excellent books are listed on the bottom.
For those needing a sweetener, there is a safe one called Just Like Sugar, http://www.justlikesugarinc.com and its available in Whole Foods in Hawaii. It's made of chicory which has been used for 70 years to improve the health of diabetics, and orange peel, Vitamin C and Calcium. Dr. Russell Blaylock wrote in his newsletter, The Blaylock Wellness Report, "Finally a safe sweetener."
All my best,
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
From: R White, firstname.lastname@example.org
Sent: Thu, 4 Dec 2008 6:16 pm
Subject: MPWHI website
Thanks for the great show! ;)
I guess I communicate better in writing than on the air....
Could you please forward this e-mail to the appropriate person? Thanks! ;)
Thanks for sharing all the great information about Aspertame on KIPO's Town Square! ;)
I was the caller who commented that there was an easy way to make the MPWHI website accessible to blind & visually impaired visitors.
Y'all have a lot of graphic links on the website. Please ask yourwebmaster to add the text on the graphic to the image's "alt" attribute. For example, if one of your graphic links is a "Contact Us" button, s/he would add that text to the image's "alt" attribute. This text would appear if someone moves their mouse over the graphic button, but it would also be read by the text-to-speech screen readers used by many blind & visually impaired people.
This is a much easier fix than converting the graphic links to text links....
Again, thank you for the great on-air info & I look forward to reading your online info! ;)
Anuenue Chapter Vice-President
National Federation of the Blind of Hawaii