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Aspartame is a popular artificial sweetener found in Diet Coke, chewing gum, yogurt, and other foods. Scheduled to be declared a probable carcinogen It is scheduled for next month by a division of the World Health Organization, Reuters reported on Thursday (June 29).

What is Aspartame?

Discovered by American chemist James Schlatter in 1965, aspartame is about 200 times sweeter than regular sugar.

It was approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration in 1974 for use as a tabletop sweetener and as a dry-based additive in chewing gum, breakfast cereals, and foods.

Why Aspartame?

Despite its intense sweetness, aspartame has almost zero calories and does not have the bitter aftertaste of saccharin, so its popularity has grown with the advent of diet-conscious consumers.

What products contain aspartame?

Low-calorie sugar substitutes are found in soft drinks, gelatin, confectionery, desserts, sugar-free cough drops, and more.

It is also used to enhance the flavor of baked and canned foods, powdered drink mixes, candies and puddings.

What other artificial sweeteners are used?

Saccharin, sucralose and neotame, along with aspartame, are among five other artificial sweeteners approved by the WHO’s Committee on Food Additives.

The FDA has also approved the use of three plant- and fruit-based sweeteners, including an extract obtained from the stevia plant, swingle fruit extract, and a group of proteins called thaumatin. What is “possible carcinogen” aspartame in diet sodas and unsweetened juices?

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