Carbonation, Soda, Aspartame and Caffeine Withdrawal

By Laura Moncur @ 5:00 am — Filed under:

My Weight Watchers teacher is back on the soap box about soda. She has stopped drinking soda about five weeks ago. Her flatter stomach and the absence of weight swings have been attributed to the carbonation fast. She is drinking only water now and she is adamant about the benefits of getting off pop.

I leave her meetings thinking, “I guess I should stop drinking pop.” I’ve stopped drinking pop before. I was testing it for myself. I wrote an entry on how to quit soda. I didn’t notice any improvements in my running. I didn’t notice a flatter stomach or absence of weight swings. I DID notice the caffeine withdrawals, though. All of this, and I still leave her meetings thinking, “I guess I should stop drinking pop.”

I found myself planning a weekend of headaches so I could quit cold turkey. It takes me about four days of caffeine withdrawal headaches to get “clean.” I was thinking of sacrificing an entire weekend to “coming down” off Diet Mountain Dew and gourmet coffee. If you could look me in the eyes right now, I’d look sheepish. Yes, I have started drinking coffee. Just two cups a morning, homebrewed. I’ve found that those expensive tiny little packages of coffee that are in the coffee aisle at the grocery store aren’t as bitter as Folgers and I’m able to almost mainline my caffeine.

Maybe that’s why I’m tempted. Maybe I feel out of control. A few months ago, a Diet Mountain Dew felt like a treat. Now, it’s a treat I give myself every day with my lunch. I stop drinking soda after five in the evening so I can sleep, but other than that, I’ve gotten really interested in my daily caffeine dosage.

If I don’t get a good dosage of caffeine, I end up with a mondo headache. If I get a little bit of an over dosage, I end up writing three or four blog entries in one day. If I get an over dosage, every day, I end up needing it to prevent those headaches, at which point, the creativity spurt that used to come from the over dosage is long gone and I need even more caffeine to have that hyper-real writing experience.

All of that sounds like addiction to me and I hate to think that I am addicted to anything. Ok, I’d be happy if someone said that I was addicted to writing or exercise or healthy living. Those are addictions that I could live quite well with. Addiction to caffeine is such a item of contention in Salt Lake City that I feel like I need to be free of it.

Then again, there are all of those studies that say how great caffeine is. They say that caffeine makes us alert, increases physical stamina and makes us hyper-aware of our surroundings. There are just as many studies that say it’s bad, bad, bad, however. I just don’t have the attention span to research this issue and I don’t trust anyone enough to take their word for it, not even my Weight Watchers teacher.

So, what do I do? Well, I’m not quitting next weekend. I can tell you that much. I’m not pinky-swearing that I won’t drink pop/coffee. I’m not increasing my intake. I’m just going to lie low and make the decision later. Right now, I’m enjoying sampling all the fancy coffees in the grocery aisle.


208 Responses to “Carbonation, Soda, Aspartame and Caffeine Withdrawal”

  1. ange Says:

    I have stopped drinking diet pop with aspartame recently. My withdrawal symptoms included he headaches, nausea, diarria, dizzy spells, anxiety, mouth and tongue sores, and upset stomach just to name a few. I have noticed since stopping the diet pop I have lost approx. 3-4 pounds in a month. I am a weightwatchers member and have originally lost 37 pounds. They were the ones who suggested I go from regular pop to diet pop when I initially joined. It is too bad they are not more aware of the problems diet pop aspartame can cause.

  2. Laura Moncur Says:

    Diet soda is a good crutch when you are trying to lose weight and I still think it’s healthier than regular soda. It’s a good alternative when you are trying to cut the liquid calories out of your diet.

    Don’t take away the crutch before you’re ready to walk. Dropping diet soda is something that is helpful to people who have been eating healthy for awhile and are ready to go on to the next level.

  3. Gavin Says:

    WoooHooo To CAFFEINE!!! Just enjoyed your latest entry as it caught my latenight attention while sipping a (blah) Bottled Water! I just think that addiction to Caffeine or Carbonation, or Sugar or whatever is sooooo much better than some of the other things people are or could be addicted to. Granted, it might not make us look as aesthetically pleasing as we’d like, I say if it makes you happy, HAVE IT! The withdrawal headaches aren’t worth quitting it in my opinion. I LOVE LOVE LOVE SODA, COFFEE, & CHOCOLATE. Maybe we need to take it in moderation, but as long as I’m alive, I won’t live without it. I say enjoy your gourmet coffee because if having a few cups of coffee gets you motivated in the morning then that’s a few more calories burned that would have been accumulated sitting in bed that much longer. Thanks for your Writing!

  4. Maria Gonzalez Says:

    this website is really infromative and also helpful. it answered my questions regarding caffeine.

  5. TryingToQuit Says:

    Your headaches are probably not connected to caffeine withdrawal, it is more like aspartame withdrawal.

    The aspartame in diet soda builds up in your system and triggers headaches when it is not “fed.”

  6. Nicholle Says:

    Aspartame is so, so bad for you. Even in low to moderate doses-say, a can or two of diet soda per day-it can cause adverse reactions in sensitive people. It does build up in the system and lead to all kinds of problems. Chemically, it degrades into hazardous chemicals. I used to be addicted to diet soda, and now that I’m off it (for less than a month) I feel very refreshed physically and otherwise. Educate yourself and better still, stop drinking it and see how you feel. Aspartame is poison! Don’t drink it no matter how much you enjoy diet soda, because there’s no way it’s safe!

  7. Lisa Says:

    Hello i just got back from the docters and he told me something trubling. he siad that i could be a diabetic and that if i continue doing wehat i am doing i am goign to die. In the past year i have gained 70 pounds and i have drank nothing but pop not water, nothing. sometimes i can drink up to 4 2leter bottles a day and i need strong pop such as : coke,drpepper,chericola. pepsie will not do its not strong enough. anyways i went to the dentes and he told me some of my teeth could be saved. he fixed half of my mouth and i still need work done. I am 18 years old and i have already been told that i am going to die …. at this rate sooner than any other 18 year old and i really need support and ideas to help me get through this time. My withdrawls are so bad i get sick and very irratated. So if anyone has anything to say to help me that would be greatly appreciated. remember any word is better then no word at all. Thanks Lisa Lisachenard@hotmail.com

  8. ron Says:

    I have tryed to stop deit coke in the past but I ended up with the same Senero headaches migrains feeling really bad ect!! This time I look at it at a different angle. What can I do to help the headaches well I started reading about Tea’s and the antioxidants in them so I stated drinking them many differnt varities on the shelf. I’m not a big coffee fan but this tea is great water benifit and antioxidants as well it has been easier to go days without any caffine. but the big suprise no carbonation. just info, Rgn

  9. Marian Says:

    I quit drinking diet pop because of aspartame 3 months ago. It is so bad for you, it’s really scary. My sister had MS symptons that went away after being off aspartame for 1 month. I admit that I do have less aches and pains but I really miss it. I haven’t lost any weight by quitting it. I’ve been drinking ice tea, more water, club soda with fruit juice and a LITTLE bit of regular soda here and there. But nothing can satisfy the quench like diet coke! Very frustrating. I broke down and drank 1/2 can of diet coke today at work, but that will be it for a very long time. I still drink 2 cups of coffee every morning, stopping all caffiene by 2:00 pm so I can sleep. I will never stop that.

  10. Lisa Says:

    Hi this is Lisa checking back i have been free of pop for a month now …… i worte about 1 month or 2 ago about the docter telling me i was going to die if i continued drinking pop well i lost 20 pounds and i am still losing weight pop is no good!!!!

  11. John Says:

    Go cold turkey and replace the soda with water, carrort juice, and fresh or frozen blueberries or strawberries. I quit cold turkey after 20+ years of 15-20+ Diet Cokes per day. First 4 days had headaches and fatigue, but now I FEEL LIKE THE CHAMPION OF THE WORLD! BEST THING I EVER DID!!! I LIVE BETTER AND I SLEEP BETTER!!!! JUST DO IT!

  12. Kate Says:

    I am in the middle of my withdrawal from aspartame. Despite the headaches and nausea I still have more energy than I did previously.

  13. Pearl Says:

    I had no idea that aspartame could be so terrible! I’m a newly-diagnosed type 2 diabetic and my doctor encouraged me to drink diet pop as a treat, so I did. Since I never get headaches, I was wondering what was the matter with me when I started developing them for no apparent reason. Then I heard about the aspartame! I quite drinking pop a while ago, but was introduced to some no-sugar-added ice cream and happily bought some. Shortly after that lovely snack was history, I began experiencing headaches again. What was this??? I decided to read the label more closely and guess what I found? ASPARTAME!!! Guess I just have to do without, since any treat I’m allowed is laced with aspartame. I’ve already lost 30 lbs (yaaay!!) but the headaches aren’t much of a reward. Perhaps doctors/dieticans should be made aware of the dangers of aspartame, because they’re the ones that encourage us to partake of those “safe” diet treats! ~Pearl

  14. Valerie Australia Says:

    5 days ago I had surgery, so having to fast and then hospitilized I decieded to give up the ASPARTAME. I usually consume 6 diet coke cans per day, and have done for 20 years.Weightlose has always been slow and I’m keen to see if its easier after giving up the diet coke. Headaches the past few days have been really bad. I’ve been drinking rain water approx 2 litres /day. Fingers crossed, I can keep it up

  15. Mark C. Says:

    Aspartame is an excitotoxin. Excitotoxins have the ability to pass through the blood brain barrier, and when they do, they “excite” the neurons to the point that they die. Other excitotoxins include MSG and soy protein (which is used to make MSG). All of these substances also induce the insulin spikes that are responsible for cravings and weight gain, as well as adult-onset diabetes. Ironic that aspartame and diet drinks, touted for those wanting to lose weight, actually have the opposite effect, with additional serious side effects. Products like MSG also affect the same brain receptors that valium does, giving that sense of well-being that one has when getting their “fix”, and then the insulin spikes cause the later cravings, much like an addiction. While caffeine can also be addictive, the carb-aspartame cravings are certainly worse. All sodas are bad because of their phosphoric acid content, which seriously depletes the bones of calcium (actually, any processed food will contain phosphates, which are used as preservatives), as well as soy, which is a natural calcium blocker (as well as other important minerals). Want to lose weight and feel better? Ditch the processed foods, diet sodas, and “energy” bars.

  16. Zeb Says:

    Caffeine is not the best for you… It can give you a lift and benefit right before working out… Now how many Americans use caffeine for the purpose of workin out? 🙂 ha… Not very many! Dr. Pepper to me was made by the GODS yet I know it is not good for me! Now if I had a 12 oz. can once a day at lunch or dinner than I would be SUPER… yet that is not the purpose of the soda industry… Sugar is very powerful to the brain and body and caffeine is highly addictive… There is no way in HELL 😉 that I can only drink a small amount of soda pop a day! So I have come to the conclusion that I will love longer, happier, less anxious, less depressed, less fatigued… if just say NO to carbonated sugary caffeinated soda and say YES to drinking the appropiate materials of this earth… which includes at least 8 glasses of 8 oz. water a day! Dehydration causes headaches!!! I am sure we are all aware! ha May you have a lucky and good weathered day! And if not… than go do something nice for someone else… maybe you could go buy someone a nice cold 20 oz. Dr. Pepper!!!!!!!!! 😉 … 🙁 ha ~ Zebulon ” Zeb “

  17. Laycie Says:

    I recently quit drinking or eatting anything with aspartame. I get terrible headaches and body aches all day! I even have low grade fevers at night that make it almost impossible to sleep! Which all started two days after quitting my addiction. Are these normal side effects of withdrawal?

  18. Wendie Says:


    I just quit diet coke last Friday (5 days clean!) and I am experiencing the WORST body aches ever. Did your aches go away and if so, did you stay off diet coke?

  19. Erica Says:

    Hey there! I just recently gave up pop – 12 days clean! I didn’t really get body aches until today, it feel slike a cold/fly coming on! But I have heard that its easier to loose weight! Keep up the good work. Don’t give up! God Bless!

  20. Teresa Says:

    Hi All,

    When I had my 4th child I couldn’t loose the weight at all. I read an article when my baby was 3 months old, online that drinking water in place of soda helps to loose weight, and surely enough, I lost nearly 40lbs in 2 months. I didn’t even lift a finger to exercise or anything. I am now a water lover!!!!!!!!!!

  21. Amanda Says:

    Hi All, I just started drinking diet soda in place of reg. soda. Before today I haven’t drank anything but reg. Mt. Dew in 5 years. I hope this will help me lose weight..Wish me luck

  22. Tracy Says:

    I stopped the diet pop after reading some terrible information on the internet about how damaging it was to my body. All along, every time I had a headache I contributed it to “caffiene withdrawl” BUT now I know that it was in fact the ASPARTAME withdrawl I was experiencing. I got pretty scared after reading the information on the internet and decided to be done with it. I had AWFUL withdrawl for about 2-4 days but now I am fine and Very glad. I still crave the carbonation and I do have a regular soda now and again. I with there was something with carbonation that I could drink with confidence.

  23. TOM Says:


  24. Judi Says:

    This is my 2nd week w/o diet coke. I’ve drank 1 can w lunch for yrs and sometimes another in the late afternoon. I’m feeling very fatigued, sluggish, upset stomach and my neck & back ache. How much longer will this go on?

  25. Pat Blackburn Says:

    This is my 8th day off aspartame. I’m having horrible withdrawal, I think. 1 year ago, I was diagnosed with heart palpitations, high pulse and blood pressure. Given toprol to block adrenaline, brought pulse rate down. Got off caffiene. Still have palpitations, and blood pressure spikes. Can not lose weight; all my life have been on a diet, and used to be able to lose weight. Began to hear about the concerns of aspartame. Wondering, could this be my problem. Also, wondering will my withdrawal and other symptoms subside. I am a mess.

  26. Pat Blackburn Says:

    Newbie but an oldie. Heavy diet coke drinker all my life. Always a weight problem. Always been able to get weight off in past. 1 year ago, had tachardia, high blood pressure, increased pulse. Put on toprol, then added lisnopril to keep blood pressure in check. Still having palpitations, no weight loss, sleeplessness, anxiety. GAve up caffeine at the onset of diagnosis, helped some. Became aware of aspartame addiction. Wow. Decided to give it up in all forms. I am 8th day, and I am extremely anxious and nervouse feeling along with sleeplessness. How long will I feel this way? Will my other symptoms improve?

  27. Elizabeth Powers Says:

    I have had problems with my legs for quite some time and attributed it to arthritis. My legs feel heavy, like they are encased in tight stockings and I must now use a walker as I am in such pain all of the time, have difficulty walking and lose my balance easily without some kind of support. I have thought for some time that all of this was caused because of my age…83. I have been drinking Diet Coke for over 25 years and recently Several relatives have told me to stop drinking Diet Coke as the aspartame used in it is probably the culprit responsible for all of my problems. I have not had any Diet Coke or anything with Aspartame in it for 12 days now and I have not had headaches but once in awhile feel a little dizzy and thought perhaps this was caused because of the caffeine in the tea I am now drinking. I am still waiting for all of my leg problems to disappear and have expected to feel like a “million bucks” by now, but all I feel is that my legs feel the same and I feel like I am in la la land!…I am trying stick to the suggested time of giving it up for 60 days but I miss the feeling of being quite cheerful after having one of my usual 2 or 3 12oz cans a day! I have been told that eating or drinking anything with Aspartame in it is the same as ingesting sweet poison…So will I continue my days of Aspartame withdrawal…I sure am going to try! Liz

  28. Jordyn Says:

    this website helped me so much and also scared me. all these people defintley only drank one 12 oz. soda a day well i definitley drink over 100 oz. a day. i drink a 52 oz. in the morning and a 52 oz after school gets out and during school i get a 12 oz. i am only 15 years old and i already drink this much…SCARY!!!!!!!!!!!!!! i am now not drinking soda for i have come to the conclusion how awful it is for you, and how much better i would be at sports. thank you so much for helping me reach my conclusion… jordyn

  29. Pat Blackburn Says:

    Much better now since last I posted. I am sleeping better, only had 1 sleepless night in 2 week. Only one severe palpitation episode, blood pressure down 10 points on blood pressure since going off aspartame in all foods. It has been about a month since going cold turkey.

  30. Valerie Australia Says:

    Sept 22,2006 I posted a comment, then I was at day 5 of giving up diet coke. The headaches continued for about a month. Its now 5 months and I havnt even taken a sip. Sometimes I think one would be nice, but just drink water. The weight is still the same, I dont feel any different, but know I have to be healthier. My purse is heavier, I dont have to buy the diet coke with the shopping now. Coke-a cola Amtil must have dropped in profits from me stopping.

  31. Ricky Says:

    Mostly all I have drunk since foever is Pepsi or coke. Anytime I was thirsty, I got a pepsi. Anytime I wanted to eat, I got a pepsi. I drank 4-6 cans per day. That is at the least 600 excess calories per day. Just one week ago I said I’m going to stop. I wanted to lose weight so I just stopped. I have cravings for soda sometimes and headaches also tounge sores. Soda is always there to tempt me and people are drinking it all the time. It does get painful at times, but no matter what I just have one thing in mind, reaching my goal and keeping it that way.

  32. Jessica Says:

    I drink about 3/4 – 1 can of pepsi (not diet) a day. I really enjoy it. I don’t smoke, I don’t drink alcohol, I don’t even drink coffee. I’m afraid of my pepsi affection though – I want to stop but my head is killing me right now. I thought maybe if I dedicate myself to not drink it for 40 days (lent) I can do it forever – but I’m not too sure. I really like it. I am so tempted to go get one from the machine right now. Does anybody have any more tips on breaking from regular pepsi – do you really think it’s that bad?

  33. Laura Says:

    I’m giving up aspartame for the second time in a year. I have been a diet-only pop drinker for about 5 years and totally bought into all the “diet” foods too – yogurt, ice creams, the Weight Watcher candies, etc. I gave up pop for Lent as part of my effort, it’s been two weeks since I last had a diet soda. Four days ago I started getting a bad headache every night – feels like my brain is swelling. A couple of times this was accompanied by a low grade fever – one night it was 100.2! Delayed as it is, I know this is the aspartame withdrawal because I generally never get headaches and I can’t think of any other explanation. Today I got so dizzy and had a headache so I got one of those no-cal flavored waters…this one had sucralose (Splenda), which I’m sure is no better, but I admit I caved! In part I was “testing” to see if an artificial sweetener would make me feel better – thought it would confirm my suspicions about aspartame withdrawal. Don’t feel any better, but I still think that’s what it is. For those of you with the headaches, I’m finding that two ibuprofen with a potassium supplement or banana helps ease them somewhat. Also be sure you’re drinking lots of water. This sucks. I’ve been poisoning myself for years and I am sick of it!

  34. Tim Says:

    I have been unsuccessfully trying to stop drinking diet soda for some time now. I drink it when I’m happy, I drink it when I’m depressed. When I try to stop, the urge to have some is so strong I can’t stop myself. Even though I know it is the cause of my stomach and joint problems. Much like cigarettes there should be a health warning on the side of sodas, especially diets with artifical sweetners. ANYBODY UP FOR A CLASS ACTION SUIT AGAINST COKE AND PEPSI! If it can be done for cigarettes why not soda!

  35. Jessica Says:

    I’ve been caffeine & carbonation free for THIRTY DAYS! I feel great. The first week and a half was terrible. I was drinking about a three quarts of water a day. I now stick to milk, water, 100% real juice, and Celestial Seasonings Raspberry Zinger iced tea. The tea is herbal – no calories, no caffeine, basically not anything. I make it in a gallon container – I like it really dilluted – like 3 tea bags for the whole deal. It’s actually really satisfying. I sleep better, I get less headaches, and my stomach seems to look flatter to me (that happened in the first week – nice surprise) I strongly encourage everyone to take control of their bodies. I’m not saying I don’t eat sweets and other tasty foods – I’m just not mindlessly wasting my caloric intake limits on beverages anymore. Another bonus: cutting $3.00 of restaurant bills.

  36. Donna Says:

    I gave up Diet Coke, sugar, and added sweetners about 4 days ago. I feel like I have the flu, I am fighting fatigue terribly, even black coffee is not helping. But I am here to tell you that all of those drugs are robbing me of my life. When I consume any or all of the above I feel like all I want to do is eat. I have gained 100 pounds in the last 10 years and it all started with Diet Coke. I want my life back, and in order to do that I MUST REMOVE these items from my grocery list. The truth hurts sometimes.

  37. Dayle Says:

    After getting an article on the evils of Aspartame, I stopped eating and drinking everything containing it two weeks ago. I have experienced terrible leg cramps and joint pain in my hands, elbows, and shoulders. I originally thought the pain was related to overdoing some gardening, but the pain has intensified over time and I can’t attribute it to anything other than my abrupt abstinance of diet Pepsi and light yogurts. I was diagnosed with MS some 20 years ago and have had mild attacks through out the years,nothing completely dibiliating. I have noticed in the last year a steady worsening of my symptoms and tiredness. I have been overweight my entire life and have lived on diet sodas, and desserts for well over 30 years. The joint pain, and restless leg symptoms I’m experiencing are very intense. Can anyone tell me how long withdrawal takes?

  38. Pat Says:

    It has been about 3 months now. I definitely sleep better; the ringing in my ears has dropped about 80%, I rarely get an anxiety attack, my heart palpitations are much milder(but not gone), blood pressure is lower(not off BP medicine yet. I have not had any products with any artificial sweetners to my knowledge. I definitely feel better. Aspartame did affect me greatly.

  39. becky Says:

    I was so concerned about diet drinks that I saw a hypnotist and went cold turkey – but I now crave fruiy juice and vitamin C – does anyone wlse have this or do you know why?

  40. Brenda Says:

    I stopped drinking diet pop 5 weeks ago, cold turkey, no headaches or anything to speak of. I’m doing great without the diet pop but would like to have something else to drink that would be good tasting and good for me. Also, just now starting to loss a few pounds.

  41. Jen Says:

    I gave up a bad diet coke habit almost 3 weeks ago, I am still having extreme fatigue and find it very frustrating. When am I going to feel GREAT again? Also my weight is going up, not down, but it is happening so fast I think it has to do with fuid retention, not fat gain. Any suggestions of how to deal with the weight gain? I substituted my morning can of diet coke with a cup of green tea. To get over the 3:00pm fuzzies I drink a glass of orange juice. If I am super sluggish in the afternoons I will drink a cup of de-caf coffee. My substite for the bubbles is Perrier mineral water with a wedge of fresh lemon and or lime. The link someone made to vitamin C makes sense as it is a detoxifier and yes, I am drinking way more juice than ever in my life. I just wish there was something on the market that provided the same satisfaction with out the caffine and the apartamane. I REALLY MISS the AHHHHH!!!!!!!!!!!!!! after that first sip. I guess that is what an addiction is.

  42. Holly Says:

    I have been a diet cola drinker for more than three decades. I think I have kept the industry in business single-handedly! Tab was my favorite until they changed the sweetener in it to aspartame, then I switched to Diet Coke. I also like Diet Dr. Pepper.

    I know I must give up the diet colas, tea, and chocolate. I have Bipolar Disorder and IBS. Caffeine and artificial sweeteners just make them worse. I guess it will be cold turkey for me. I dread it. I am so hooked!

  43. Frank Says:

    Am on call for work 24 hours a day part of the year and frequently go into work on all 3 shifts to see how things are going. Used to drink up to 10-12 cans of Pepsi a day ( yes you read that right !)so that I would be alert in the plant. My doctor told me that my heart was showing stress from all the caffeine; that too much caffeine can affect your heart rhythm and to quit drinking the soda pop. He was also surprised all the sugar in the soda had not made me diabetic. I have cut the Pepsi consumption down to 1 can a day, and am healthier for it.

  44. Michelle Says:

    I’m 3 weeks into stopping aspartame in everything (I used to drink one Diet Coke a day and then put aspartame in about 10 cups of coffee!)

    I still feel absolutely HORRIBLE – severe headaches, nausea half of the day, aches in my joints, my feet and legs really hurting, some dizzyness.

    All I can say is, if the WITHDRAWAL is this bad, why would ANYBODY drink Diet Coke or put aspartame sweeteners in coffee and tea? The aspartame manufacturers (and Coke and Pepsi) should have a class action lawsuit against them.

    I will NEVER put anything in my body again that has aspartame in it.

  45. Bekki Says:

    I have stopped my diet pepsi drinking for 4 days now, and feel terrible, headaches, joint pain, nausea, fatigue… For the better part of the last 10 yrs I have drank between 6-10 litres of the stuff EVERY DAY!!! For years, I was told, as a diabetic, I could have as much as I wanted and not to worry because it wouldn’t mess up my meal program.

    My question is this… what is there left for a diabetic to drink? I can’t have juices or regular pop because it messes with my blood sugar levels, I don’t like the taste of teas or coffees, and I want a change from just drinking water all the time!

    Does anyone have any suggestions? I would appreciate any help you guys have to offer me…

  46. Paul Says:

    off aspartame for 5 days now, mild headaches and a jittery feeling. used to drink 5 liters of diet pepsi a day. noticed that I am sleeping better and palpatations seem much less frequent and less severe. I hope this also helps my pressure as well. If this takes away some of my health problems then class action is going to happen.

  47. Mari Says:

    This is really interesting. I drank no more than 2 Diet Cokes per day but decided to try to go cold turkey. We just got back from a sightseeing, museum kind of vacation on the East Coast and I thought my aches and pains, joint pain was just “overdoing” it. I work out with weights at the gym about twice a week so I know I’m not just “out of shape.” I’ve had a headache everyday (but attributed it to migraines that I sometimes get). After reading all these blogs, I think it’s the Aspartame! I’ve never drank coffee and have a cup or two of tea per day. Guess I need a new “drinking” habit of iced tea. I’ve always drank 4-5 glasses of water per day, but guess I need to up that.

  48. Claire Says:

    Hello all, Massive withdrawal!!! I have been having sweetner in my tea and coffee for about 20 years. As i have a very sweet tooth I would have about 3 in each drink. I would probably say all in all I have about 30 a day. I gave them up for unrefined sugar about 12 days. I’m now suffering from a foggy head. I find it hard to focus and have felt rather queezy. Hoping it won’t get worse as I might not be able to drive. Going to try drinking more water.

  49. Paul Says:

    Off this crap since june 7th now. Sleeping great, palpatations gone, anxiety gone depression gone. Blood Pressure down. I just can’t believe how much better I feel. People if you are on this stuff just give it a try quit for a few weeks and see how much better you will feel.

  50. Maureen Says:

    Stopped taking the aspertaine and spelenda and coffee about three days ago. Holy sh—t! The withdrawl severe headhache, body aches, nightmares, lack of sleep, fever 102.3 highest so far, fluxuates. Told I had occult blood in my kidneys few years ago, I think it is this sweetner. I will suffer and get off this stuff, and have told all my family and friends not to use this stuff, it is a crime and these people that rushed it thorugh should be prosecuted.

  51. sian Says:

    Just wanted to say that after 20 years of having about four diet cokes ago I decided to give up cold turkey because of the damage it is doing to my body. I have felt bad before but never this bad. I feel like I have the hangover from hell. It is twelve days now and I am just wondering how long it will be till I feel better. I feel so ill and my brain feels all weird and achy. Hang in there if you are feeling like me because if it does this to your body when you give up it must be killing you whilst you still are drinking it.

  52. Mac Says:

    I need some info…

    For 15 years I have drunk a lot of diet coke, but in the last 6 months I get through 4 big bottles a day. I have been experiencing mood changes where I want to hit people, panic attacks over stupid things and OCD.

    I decided to stop drinking coke and all caffeine products about 2 & 1/2 weeks ago and the withdrawal symptoms are bad. I feel like I’m going mad, Feel angry and aggressive, my head feels heavy and dizzy, I have no energy, bad concentration, muscle aches.

    Please someone tell me how long these symptoms last? And have you experienced any of these problems?

  53. sian Says:

    Hi I posted not long ago and just want to say that my symptoms lasted about three weeks. I am still getting better everyday but will never consume aspartame again as I feel so mucgh better. That stuff must be really bad for you.

  54. Mac Says:

    Thank you for the reply Sian…

    Did u feel aggressive with it though? It’s so scary! I wish i was 3 months down the line. It’s like a emotional rollercoaster.

  55. Laurie Says:

    As stated by everyone else, I’ve been a diet coke addict for about 20 years. About 4 years ago, I tried to give it up but felt tired and couldn’t find a good substitute. Tried coffee, but YUCK. Then, I started researching aspartame and found out how aweful it is. I have had fibromyalgia for about 20 years, my mom has MS and then last summer I was diagnosed (and cured of) leukemia. I have no doubt that this poison is what causes all this. I’ve also heard that it can cause lupis and systoms of lymes disease, etc. I think that people are really being fooled by aspartame. It is in SOOO many things that people don’t realize. I tell different friends everyday “if it doesn’t have a cup of sugar in it and it tastes sweet, it’s got aspartame (or sucralose, splenda, etc. They’re all bad) in it.” Many products containing these substances are cereal (a new line is marketed for kids with 1/3 less sugar), kool aid, sugar-free gum, crystal light, flavored tea and water. If it says “light” or “sugar free”, chances are it contains poison. While I don’t think caffeine is good for you, I think in moderation, it’s not the devil. I have substituted iced tea for diet coke. I get up every morning and brew a big pitcher in the Mr.Coffee Iced tea maker. I use lots of ice and lemon and I’m really enjoying it. Many of us suffer from the addiction to that sweet taste of aspartame in diet coke, but I’m doing ok without it. It’s only been 10 days and I feel like crap with dizziness, headaches, extreme fatigue, but I KNOW it’s the right thing to do. I’m just glad to read this blog and to see that other people are experiencing the same thing. Good luck to all.

  56. Jay Says:

    I drank about six 12oz cans of diet coke a day for the past twelve years. I was 175lbs, 5’11 back then, and 23 years old.

    I’m 35 how and struggling with keeping my weight under 220lbs. I suppose aging is normal, but I gave up my diet coke crutch on September 13, 11 days ago.

    I was tired. I had bad headaches. I was irritable. I had leg pains.

    Now I’m becoming aware of the symptoms going away, and my sleep has been better since the 3 day mark. I have had some caffeine in chocolate, but nowhere near as much as before.

    I did just notice that yogurt I ate had apartame in it, and now I have a headache. I also don’t feel a need to keep eating… I think the natural satiety functions are coming online.

    I am however aware that I have gained 8 lbs in the last two weeks, but perhaps that’s because I am drinking almost a gallon of water a day.

  57. Jenny Lynn Says:

    I am going through exactly the same things as all of you, and this is only day 3 of being aspartame-free! Just today I have started feeling like I am getting a cold, and my brain feels like it is detached from my head! The headaches are the worst – they are in the back of my head above my neck.

    I basically stopped aspartame-consumption to see if it would help my my chronic sinus problems. I have read it can take up to 60 days to notice any difference. So, good luck to all of you and good luck to me!

  58. Lisa Says:

    I am stopping aspartame today. I did well all day, I have lost weight about 5 years ago .. 45 lbs.. and I heard this causes brain tumors and cancer. This is terrible! I ended up eating Chocolate tonight because of the lack of caffeine. But I think in the long run I will lose weight even if I gain weight initially. I can’t believe they allow this stuff on the market when there are obvious withdrawl and addiction problems. Is there any way to wean with less drastic symptoms?

  59. Lisa Says:

    Ok today is my second day.. I feel nausea and I’m very tired. However, last night I slept thru the night. I used to get up in the middle of the night and crave a granola bar or something sweet. Since I stopped yesterday I did not wake up last night at all in the middle of the night. I hope this happen again tonight!

  60. Lisa Says:

    Jenny.. question did it help your sinus problem?

  61. Liz Says:

    I have drunk diet soda since I was a teen 30 years ago – saccarin then. I thought when aspartame came out I had a safer alternative. I have been a Diet Coke addict for 10 to 15 years. My friend and I both stopped drinking it a week ago and I have had very bizarre mouth problems. First the insides of my cheeks were rough and bumpy, then my tongue felt like it was swollen and sore, then inside my lips was red and swollen and tender. Most of those symptoms are gone now except my tongue still feels a little numb. My mouth is also extremely dry. Very strange!! I’m convinced it is aspartame withdrawal and hope I have the strength to never go back!!

  62. Bobbi Says:

    I have been caffiene and aspartame free for 6 days now after being diagnosed with a acid reflux and being told to restrict my diet. I started with the headache..which I expected from lack of caffiene…and when I researched what I could do about that, I found the aspartame information. UGGHHHH had I only known!! The withdrawal symptoms are starting to subside now…still having leg and muscle cramps, but the headaches and nauseousness have gone away. It took me 2 hours at the grocery store..reading labels, I was suprised how many things contain aspartame!! Does anyone have any suggestions for drinks?? I’m not a huge fan of plain water and the only thing I can find without apartame is Propel!

  63. Pam Says:

    Prior to cutting out aspartame,I drank about 2L per day of diet cola. I experienced heart palpatations, chest pain, exhaustion, jittery feelings, achiness and many mild headaches. I tried several times to cut out diet pop altogether, and found that the combined Aspartame/caffeine withdrawal was horrible. In order to cut out the aspartame, I had to cut out the caffeine first by switching to caffeine free diet cola(headaches only, resulted). I then cut out Aspartame and experienced immense achiness, fatigue, headaches and massive thirst. I wonder if all the symptoms perhaps connect to dehydration as the body tries to get rid of the aspartame poison? It took about 2 months before I was symptom free. About 2 weeks ago I tried to have a(one) diet cola and went through a few of the symptoms in a delayed manner (headache, tired, palpatations). This week, I’m so thirsty, no amount of water has quenched my thirst. I don’t plan to drink aspartame again.

  64. melissa Says:

    i had my first diet coke at 8am breakfast, reading all your blogs, its now 10am and i just opened another! ive been drinking DC for years, i gave up a few years back going through 4 litres a day, and that one day twelve months later i got back on it, but reading this has made me think about what im doing to myself, in the past 4 months ive gained over 5kg, i feel like shit my face looks terrible and im eating more during the week including my DC intake but on the weekend i could go through 6+ cans a day with maybe 1 or 2 meals during the day, i can even see another chin growning in my reflection on my screen, i will give up if you have suggestions feel free to comment cheers

  65. Bobbi Says:

    I’ve been caffiene and aspartame clean for 2 weeks now. The headaches, muscleaches and fatigue are gone for the most part. All I drink now is water, propel and an occasional small glass of milk….pretty boring after experience the ‘ahhhh’ after the first sip of coffee in the morning or an icy cold diet coke. I gave it up due to acid reflux…but still had another attack yesterday. I’m eating everything as bland as possible and doing everything the doctor told me…so I just don’t get it. But reflux or not…I’m not going back to the aspartame. I had been diagnosed with Lupus in the past, I am watching to see if there are any changes in those symptoms!

  66. june crawford Says:

    I di not drink diet drinks as I have always hated the after taste of artificial sweetners including Aspartame. For the past three years I have been chewing gum that I did not kno9w contained Aspartane. I mean, like a half a pack of gum a day chewing it for about 12 hours a day.

    After reading about Aspartane and finding out that it was in the gum, I immediately gave it up. This morning when I woke up I couold not move. I thought I had had a stroke, every joint in my body is swollen. I have a stiff neck and can’t even hold a pencil my wrist is swollen and inflamed so badly. I hurt all over. Chewing Aspartame gum sends the poisen directly to your brain…It is the worst. Anyway, I pray the world becomes aware of this poisen soon and it is pulled off the shelves. I am sorry for all the pain you are going through. I am just glad there was no caffine to deal with. That would double the pain.

  67. Deborah Says:

    I have been off Aspartame for about 5 days now. I drank close to 2 diet Cokes per evening. Ice tea I always used sweetneer. I also chew sugarless gum around the clock. I am not overweight, but have noticed since taking up the diet coke over the years that my stomach has been beginning to bloat. Severe heartburn. I just do not feel myself, I can remember a time I had so much energy. So many people have said Aspartame is your problem. Even my teenage daughter warned me, they had a class on it. In the last 5 days I experienced flu like symptoms, headache, fatigue,stomach ache and sores in my mouth. Today I feel better, clearer thinking and positive outlook to beat this monster. We have to check everything we consume to stay away from the monster/Aspartame. I have quit the caffeine as well. Good luck to all of you.

  68. Sarah Says:

    Googled the link between Aspartame and palpitations about 10 days ago, having had 12hr+ episodes of palpitations with increasing regularity for the past 3 years. I have had a variety of heart tests with nothing found but no doctor had ever mentioned Aspartame. I had been drinking Diet Coke and using Trident sugar free gum to curb my appetite and make me feel full but have cut them out of my diet for the last 10 days. The palpitations which had been happening every 6 days did not occur until day 8, and then only after I suspect I had eaten a dessert containing Aspartame! I am going to stay off the stuff and hope that the intervals increase as it would be great to get rid of the palpitations!

  69. Heather Says:

    Although I do not drink diet/regular sodas or coffee, I do have tea daily. Lately I’ve been drinking the holiday “Celestial Seasonings” teas like “Candy Cane Lane” and “Sugar Cookie Sleigh Ride”. They taste good, but I realized they say “natural flavorings” on the side. When I started thinking about it, they do have an aftertaste similar to diet sodas. The term “natural flavorings” can include excitotoxins under current FDA regulations. I wrote to the company and asked for a full write up of the ingredients in these two teas.

    If I get a response, I’ll post it here, but be careful of all processed foods out there! Marketing always seems to get one step ahead of us, and you really have to be alert about all the junk that’s being thrown at us daily. Be an informed consumer!

    Here are some good websites: mercola.com/blog organicconsumers.org http://www.msgmyth.com/discus/messages/247/63.html?999880949

  70. angie Says:

    I was addicted to Wrigleys Extra sugarfree gum for the past 6 months, eating about 2 to 3 packets a day.

    I stopped eating them quite suddenly after having dental treatment which meant I could not chew gum for a few days. I then decided to completely give up the gum as it was becoming an annoying habit.

    On the second day of giving up the gum I began to get flu symptoms, aches and pains in my neck shoulders and back and legs and severe headaches. At first I thought it was just flu and took cold and flu remedies. Two weeks later I was still feeling the symptoms yet no flu had materailised.

    I then decided to look into what might have changed in my life over the past two weeks and apart from my visit to the dentist the only thing I could attribute to the sickness was giving up the sugar free gum. I Googled chewing gum addiction and discovered that sugar free gums that contain aspartame was extremely addictive and may have caused my withdrawal symptoms.

    I sympathise with all of you who have suffered from this poisoning. I am still suffering with the withrawal symptoms and my life has been agony these past two weeks. I am weak, lethargic and also have sores in my mouth which makes it difficult to eat.

    I cannot believe that a product that is literally poisoning people is so widely used in our foods.

  71. christina Says:

    I began reading on aspartame and diet coke. I decided to stop drinking the diet coke two days ago (yet it feels like AGES ago). I had a crystal light and then saw it too contained aspartame (UGH)…not a huge fan of water. Well I have bad headaches now, stiff neck and shoulder pain & very tired…also quite irritable – gotta love that… if i can just make it through the week …! best of luck to all of us

  72. Lanette Says:

    Like many of you who’ve already posted your experiences here, I too have been battling an addiciton to diet sodas for the better part of 25 years. As a teen, I was hooked on Coke (not diet)to the tune of at least 6 cans a day – that’s a lot of calories! When my metabolism started to change and I started gaining weight, someone suggested switching to diet pop. I wasn’t thrilled with the idea, I had tasted them in the past and thought they tasted terrible. However, it did not take long for my tastebuds to adjust to the artificial sweetener and my consumption quickly surpassed the volume of Coke I had been drinking to a rediculous amount of 8 to 12 cans a day! But hey, I did lose 20 lbs in a month! I can’t leave the house without a well stocked cooler of my ‘poison’. It’s the first thing I drink when I get up in the morning and I drink it non-stop all day until I go to bed. A few years ago someone told me they had read that aspartame caused brain tumors and while that scared me a little, it was not enough to make me quit. Yes, I have tried cutting back or quitting without success. This gets to be a very expensive habit, and I find my life almost revolving around it, I literally monitor my supply so that I am never out.

    I have suffered immensely over the years with depression, muscle & joint pain, fatigue, irregular digestion, insomnia, headaches (including migraines), chest pain, racing heart, anxiety, restless leg syndrome and on and on and on. I was diagnosed with Fibromialgia about 12 years ago and have found little to no relief of my symptoms from any source of treatment prescribed ( melatonin or sleeping pills ). This is a fairly new syndrome, I hear more and more people suffering with it – I’m curious if this could be an epidemic caused by aspartame?

    Today my mother mentioned an article she read on the effects of aspartame – mainly the connection between it and depression, of which I have suffered terribly for many years. This has spurred me to do a little more research on the subject and make me consider kicking the aspartame habit again. I am very anxious just thinking about it. Like many of you have mentioned, it would be so much easier if there were a ‘satisfying alternative’, and I also am not a fan of drinking water. I find this interesting and very alarming – I have virtually stopped drinking water over the course of this horrible addicition.

    I want to feel better, I want to feel good again – Like I might actually live long enough to see my grandchildren someday.

    I never gave credit to aspartame as an ‘addictive substance’, but I am starting to see it for the poison that it really is. Wish me luck – I’ll be quitting as soon as my stock is depleted – a matter of a couple of days.

  73. Scott Says:

    Thought I’d post what I’m doing at the moment. I’ve been a DC addict for about 15 years and to be honest, it’s just the money that gets to me. I love the stuff but realised that I was spending around $200 a month on it (not including using it as a mixer) and figured I would be better off without it.

    I stopped drinking my daily dosage of about 2.5lt 24hrs ago and so far I have no want to go and get any. Plain substitute for water seems to be the tip but I have had an odd headache today that I guess is one of the withdrawals you lot have been bangin on about.

    Really hope I don’t suffer like many of you have, good on you for making a change for the better and good on me too 😉

  74. Judi Says:

    Four weeks ago I received an email from a friend on the dangers of aspartame. After reading the email I researched the web on my own and was shocked to read all the info that is available. I had no idea that it is so bad for you. I dumped my diet pepsi and equal and quit cold turkey that very day. In 2 days I could tell a difference. I will never touch the stuff again and am telling everyone that I know about the danger.So far 2 that I know of have quit too. Let’s keep getting the word out, I’m sure there are a lot of folks out there that aren’t aware. I had used equal and diet pepsi for about 15 years and in reading the symptoms found that I suffer from over 75% of them. couldn’t understand why I felt so bad but wasn’t really ill. This is some BAD stuff.

  75. Lanette Says:

    Well, I thought I would post quick update – I originally posted on Nov 30th – it is now Jan 16th. I have been aspertame free for nearly 6 weeks now and I feel Great! I have noticed that I don’t have as many aches & pains as I used to, not as many headaches and I feel like a person SHOULD feel! I also decided to take it a step further and quit smoking. I’m taking the prescription Chantix – if you smoke and have had a hard time quitting on your own, I HIGHLY recommend Chantix! It virtually takes all the urges and most of the withdrawal symptoms away! My husband and I, who are 30+ year smokers, are both doing very well on it. No side effectes other than a little trouble falling asleep, easily solved with a night time pain reliever with sleep aid. I wish you all great success in kicking the aspertame habit – it can be done and it is wo worth it!

  76. TRICIA Says:


  77. Ron Says:

    I drank around ten cans of diet coke daily for a number of years. I als used 4 equals in my coffee, which numbered about 5 cups daily. I stopped all aspertame on January 1, 2008. After three and a half weeks I am starting to feel better. The only thing that still bothers me is the tingling in my hands and feet. Really hoping that this does the trick. I took all types of blood tests which came back negative for sugar, etc….

  78. Brenda Says:

    I stopped consuming anything with aspartame in it years ago. I have lost 80lbs since then and got alot healthier. I also stopped eating anything with MSG (aslo a neurotoxin), High Fructrose Corn Sryup and Hydrogenated oils. Aspartame causes alot of neurological problems and brain damage even in small amounts. It is in alot of products that don’t necessarily say “sugar free” on the label. It is in 99% of chewing gums like Juicy Fruit & Bubble Yum. You have to really be careful when buying anything. Reading labels are the key.

  79. Geneva Says:

    hey i have been off caffene about 5yrs now did not have no probloms getting off it but man i have been off aspartame frome caffine free dite coke and i feel ilke crazy i have had a headace feel like if i could scream i would feel better iv been off 8 days now i just want to feel better i will never go back on that mess agin ever the makers of tha mess need to be sueed sorry my spelling is not to good im not putting that mess back in my body agin i have diebeties and afib heart probloms i will be glad when i feel better i will be praying for you all here and God bless u all thanks Geneva

  80. Jen Says:

    Ok I am on day two of no diet dp and I must say I am tripping. I took some caffeine pills this am so I know its not the caffeine.. I have been tripping all day.. I also a weight watchers member and I never drank diet until I joined. What was I thinking.

  81. Geneva Says:

    well im on day 12 now no dite drinks and nothing sugar free be cause it has it in it to im stay ing off that mess but i have ben haveing some with draws like hurting every were light headness ringing in my ears and some shacking iv noticed a lot of stuff i have not befor i will be glad when i get better and a bad temper and i am not apearson with a temper at all to jen i have been tripping to i will be praying for u ok and every one else i never new it would be like this im telling every body to get off this mess thanks and God Bless u all Geneva

  82. Geneva Says:

    does anyone here know what u can drink but water all the time i cant have caffeine or sugar i have diebeties and heart probloms i like water but i need to know what all i can dring what do u all do here for something to drink and i get to wanting to eat some thing sugar free but now i cant what can i do please help

  83. Naomi Says:


    Can you tell me a little about what you eat? I am trying to avoid those things too, aspartame in particularly, but it is hard to avoid MSG and high fructose corn syrup…

  84. Naomi Says:

    I have been off aspartame for 1 month and a half and still am feeling the effects…is this normal to be off this long and still feel it (I was drinking a LARGE amount of crystal light for three months)

  85. Rebecca Says:

    I have been on a 8-10 cans of diet soda habit for the last several years. As my resolution I cut back to just three or four diet sodas a day and I am just now getting headaches almost two months later. My head is fuzzy all day sometimes and the last couple of days it is getting worse and starting to really hurt. I have been working out and drinking water and still not feeling better. Any suggestions?

  86. walton Says:

    I stopped drinking diet coke 9 days ago. I have wanted to stop for a long time due to the caffeine and aspartame. I have been told by many people , including medical professionals who truely believe that the aspartame is so so toxic for you. My sister in law in a neuro physicist with a PHD and totally believes that the aspartame does really bad things to your brain function. I was drinking about 2 -3 liters a day and a m so excited I have gone cold turkey. I am still feeling a little “different” however I think my body is now getting used to the feeling of no caffeine and aspartame. I played tennis today for the first time in 2 weeks and seemed to have more energy and focus. I hope I can keep it up. I am such an all or nothing person.

  87. Marie Says:

    I gave up diet colas over 3 years ago. Now I fill up a pitcher of 64 ounces of water each morning and drink Kool-Aid all day! You can buy a pack of unsweetened Kool-Aid at the grocery store and they now have packets of Splenda the same size as the Kool-Aid pack that you can mix with it. I like doing that better than buying the “sugar-free” Kool-Aid, Crystal Light, etc. because they tend to be sweetened with Aspartame. I like many of the Kool-Aid flavors, but I especially love the invisible/clear flavors for myself as well as my child, who spills her drinks regulary! Ha! I drink two 8.4 ounce cans of sugar free energy drinks each day, sweetened with Ace-K and Sucralose. Sometimes with caffeine and sometimes the caffeine-free variety. It works for me!!

  88. Kathy Says:

    Hi, Please don’t substitute on poison for another! That sucralose and splenda are just a different one of the same. You would be better off using a smaller amount of natural cane sugar in that kool aid. They still aren’t admitting the problem with Aspartame yet and things are just now getting to the point where doctors and folks like us are being able to prove the connection to this garbage and health problems. The “new” stuff is just giving them their backup poison to use when they have to take this off the market. We have no idea what these new sweeteners will do but another 10-15 yrs from now?????? After being a diet cola drinker for about 20yrs and after reading many articles and papers about this junk I have just finally stopped it about 10 days ago. I have known for a while that it was bad, but there was that “what do I drink?” thing going on. I have never been a water drinker and started out on regular cola as a kid. About a month ago I started to try other sodas that I could drink once in a while like 7UP, sprite, squirt and ginger ale, but they were just too sweet and syrupy and you had to keep drinking more of that to try and quench the thirst and get rid of that syrup taste. I realized that trading for mass quantities of high fructose corn syrup was not a good option. There is no such thing as a light lower sugar option here it is either mass sugar (corn syrup or cane sugar in the natural sodas) or artificial sweetener. I decided to just quit the soda and have it over with. Because I have had the need for the carbonation I have been drinking Canada Dry carbonated water with lemon or lime and it still has that salt/seltzer taste which I don’t care for. But I found Arrowhead carbonated water with lemon or lime or plain that has no salt in it. It isn’t as bad. I have also been alternating with regular filtered tap water. That means I usually have 2 glasses going at the same time. As time goes on I have been finding the regular water better tasting. I really think the junk did something that changes the body’s taste for real water which we really need. I have had headaches even though I haven’t given up my coffee in the morning and usually one in the afternoon so I know it is a withdrawl symptom. Last summer I started having the occasional heart palp thing and had become much more anxious. Since there is a good chance this could be contributing to that I just have to do it. I have had some wierd pains and cramps since quitting. Elbow, wrist,shoulder, shoulder blades,leg,ankle – really wierd. Sudden but not lasting really long. I have also had roving abdominal cramp type stuff that was the wierd spot here then a couple hours later over there. Felt really like gas pain stuff. That was for a few days. Hopefully toxin removal stuff going on. There is one sweetener out there that would be a healthy alternative to regular sugar or artificial stuff and that is from the plant called Stevia. I think it is grown in South America and is safe, natural and I believe it has no calories. But from what I have read it is illegal for use in the US. Do a search on it and check it out.

    Good luck to all- Kathy

  89. deb Says:

    I am 40yr old and have been drinking DC for the past 9 years after being told I had low sugar and had to get off the regular pop in the amount of atleast 2 2ltr a day. I have fibromygia and was advised to get off the apartame. This is my day 4 and I am starting to feel like I am loosing my mind. I have not had a horrible headache yet, just alot of different pains that come and go through out my body, but the feeling of going crazy started after day 3 without any apartame. I drank diet sunkist that does not have alot of caffine in it anyway so it has to be the apartame. I have drank nothing but cold water for the past 4 days and can’t seem to get enough of it, I hurt all over and feel really down and out of it, very emotional as well. Can someone tell me please how long to expect this and if it will get worse before it gets better? I stopped smoking 8 yr ago cold turkey and this is nothing over that, this is horrible and the cola companies should be sued for this crap. I wish everyone the best of luck and hopefully this will leave my body soon and I can start to feel better. May God Bless each of you.

  90. kim Says:

    two and a half days without any artificial sweetner. Mad diet coke habit for at least 20 years. Splenda or Equal in the tea and coffee all the time. I have a migraine that started after the first 24 hours, and have woken up with the same headache both mornings. My eyesight it blurry and I feel light-headed. I slept like a baby both nights however, and oddly, I almost don’t want the soda??? I would never have believed that would be the case. I only had one cup of caffinated coffee each morning and have continued to have that with sugar or stevia and most of my diet coke was caffiene free. So I am not feeling the caffiene here, it’s definately the aspartame. Will post about any weight loss I notice. I have had a hard time getting weight off in the past. Good luck to all! I already feel like this is going to be so worth it.

  91. kim Says:

    Well, yesterday was day three and I had some pretty remarkable symtoms. The headache was there all day sometimes in the spotlight and sometimes as subtext, but it never went away. I noticed on day two that I was having a feeling of “coming out of my skin”. I don’t know how to describe it but it got worse on day three. It’s a very weird feeling all over that you have to move?? Almost like a tick you can control. I can’t really put it into words, but it’s alarming. Last night it was very pronounced when I went to bed. The whole time I was falling asleep I would startle awake a little and whine???? I will say that I slept again like a baby (after the initial falling asleep I guess) never woke up once to use the bathroom, so that is the third night in a row that I have not woken up. I would say I usually get up twice a night. And no it’s not because I don’t have to use the bathroom because I’m not drinking diet coke!!! I have been drinking like CRAZY. I feel so thirsty and was craving apples and grape juice yesterday. Oh and I drank Gatorade?? so rare. Lots of water, unsweetened iced tea, mineral water and a little juice ( which I never drink). It felt like I could not satisfy my thirst no matter what I drank and I was having a sweet tooth craving and I never eat dessert or anything like that. So that was day three. I woke up today with no headache thank God. Yesterday I felt very foggy all day, a little dizzy, and some blurred vision but not as bad as day two. Hope today is a clearer day!! I know I feel very refreshed waking up, today I woke up before my alarm and felt like I could get right up! Also unusual. Hope this is helping others!! I know it’s hard to kick any habit and this is not proving to be an easy one.

  92. kim Says:

    ok. it took a week and I feel symptom free. I did have a massive allergy attack and got my period 2 weeks early this week. both very unusual things to have happen but can’t know what that was about. Just making the observation. I definately am sleeping better and my head feels clear now. No more crawling feelings after the 5th day. I did crave a soda yesterday and decided just to have a regular coke. That took care of it. The best part so far about quitting aspartame is that my hunger is so different. When I feel hungry it’s not so urgent, like I can wait until I finish what I am doing to eat. Before I quit the diet coke, hunger pains were very different, they were distracting and difficult to ignore, and they would happen much more often. I know I am eating less food than I was before and I feel like I have a lot more energy. My body feels more balanced I guess? All I know is it was definately worth it. I guess you can tell how terrible something is for you by the withdrawl symptoms when you try to get off. I quit smoking successfully many years ago and this was nothing compared to that. But it was no tea party. That which does not kill us. good luck to all who kick this habit!

  93. Kathy Says:

    Hi again, Good luck to you all – This has really been horrible for me. I had also quit all the junk food before giving up my Diet Coke and about a week after my previous entry I also stopped with my coffee to get rid of the caffeine. Just one cup in the morning from having 3-4 and then 2 more after work. I have to tell you I got really scared because I was having such horrible gas and abdominal pains and I thought I was going to have to go to the emergency room a few times. Bad muscle spasms. I finally broke down and went to a Naturapathic Doctor that is actually listed by my insurance company. She was very familiar with the multitude of issues associated with this stuff. She said that the artificial sweeteners cause problems with sugar regulation among other things. After going off all the stuff I did my body was really in shock and my adrenals had pretty much been shut down and I had basically been living off of caffeine. I had absolutely no energy after giving that stuff up. I am currently on Licorice extract syrup 2 times a day (10 days now) and am feeling much better. That is supposed to stimulate the adrenals and get them working again. Seems to be working. I am also on a “relaxing tea” blend (2 times a day) that she makes that has an antispasmodic. This has helped calm all the anxiety. It has also lowered my blood pressure which was a little high. Right now I am on a high protein diet – lots of cashews – and lots of vegetables. I am still having some digestive issues, but it is gradually getting better. I am also off of dairy for a few weeks to make sure that isn’t an issue here. I already feel so much better. I am also getting out and walking. By the time I went to the doctor I had already lost about 10 lbs but I had lost my appetite big time and was having to make myself eat. This is not a problem I have EVER had before. After a couple of days of following the DR’s instructions I had my appetite back. I will come back and post again with updates. I am going to the local health fair this weekend for a blood screen so we can get a baseline and see where I’m at. This is definately not fun here!

  94. Kathy Says:

    Sorry I know I already wrote way too much but I really had to add something more. Please check EVERYTHING for the artificial sweeteners! I found out that my chewable vitamin C had it too. It is in toothpaste, medicines – coatings and especially in kids meds or liquids, gum, vitamins etc. I have my own list here that I have so far: Aspartame, acesulfame potassium, Ace-K, acesulfame K,sunnett,neotame,nutrasweet, equal, sugar twin, sweet n low, saccharin, splenda and sucralose. I read an article that said it is a real stretch to say that sucralose is made from sugar. It is the end result of a sugar that is exposed and processed with about 13 other chemicals leaving behind a crystal similar to sugar in composition. It was discovered in research for an insecticide. Don’t believe that it is a good thing. Also – although sugar acohols are natural – sorbitol, mannitol, xylitol – they can cause abdominal gas, pains and/or diarrhea. Just be aware. I am checking everything and won’t use any of this. Peace and good health to you.

  95. pk Says:

    i know i have aspartame poisoning. i have never been sick in 10 years. all of a sudden i did not get my period for 2 months and i had a minor cold. 3 months later i broke out in this terrible rash. i waited 3 and a half weeks to see a dermatologist and she told me i had scabies I WENT THROUGH HELL cleaning my house, thousands of dollars, only to end up in the emergency room one week later. one look at me, and the doctor said you do not have scabies, you have acute dermatitus. i was on prednisone for several weeks and that helped the itching. i could not figure out what i had a reaction to. well, i drank crystal lite and was eating sunflower seeds every day with msg -aspartame and msg, also chewing sugar free gum every night when i went to bed to prevent heartburn it does work, but never do it… for several months. i know that had to be the problem. after researching on line, oh my god i have been poisoning myself. it has only been 2 days since i have gone on an organic diet-no aspartame no msg, i am not moody, i sleep, i am startiting not to itch , my mind is clearer, i am not as dizzy, i can actualy see better and my poor husband who has put up with my mood swings actually kissed me today. god bless all of you for getting off of this stuff. never will i put this crap in my body…

  96. Tina Says:

    I have been drinking Diet Dr. Pepper for years, usually one a day, on the weekends maybe 2 aday. Recently a week or two ago i decided to cut back on my soda and do water, at work i changed to water also. Yesterday the worst body ache started i thought it was the flu, I had a headache all day and my vision was blurry. I’ve had this flu like feeling before, wrote it off to sinus problems, for some reason I started to think of this artificial sweetener issue and researched today. I am positive what i am feeling is all because of the aspartame, AND i was putting 4 packs of splenda in my 20 oz coffee every day, not any more. I put honey in it and a little french vanilla creamer and if i find that has this crap in it, thats going to. I gotta believe all that I’ve mentioned and stuff i probably forgot about is all related to this “poison”. My mother has complained for years that at least every month and a half she has the “flu” she is borderline diabetic and uses splenda and God knows what else. I wonder now, if what she has been going thru is related to this stuff, my sister has lupus and has so many health issues and she is only 41!! I’m going organic, this is frightening for me and all those i love. How can the government do this, pass all this crap as “healthy alternative”. Not me, not anymore. Hang in there people, it will get better.

  97. Bonnie Remley Says:

    We all have to stand up and complain about how the FDA is not doing their job. I feel we should take back the FDA and put more reliable people into helping our country get back on track. STOP the companies from getting rich from lying about their products and what is in them. What has happened to the honest concern for the public? Does the FDA have a soul?? Our Government needs to stop this posioning! They should be put in prison for posioning the public and be made to consume the products they approved or starve.

  98. Kristy Says:

    Six years ago I had my second child and had gained alot of wieght, so I decided to go on a diet. I was not happy about giving up my sugar pop but there was a “healthy alternative” Dt.Dr.Pepper. Yeah right!!! Here I thought I was doing a good thing for my body! I joined a gym and ate healthy and was losing wieght at first. But then, after just a little while I found it harder to work out, food cravings were awful, and my energy was zapped. At first, I kept pushing myself and I was just getting worse so after about a year and a half I stopped working out. I told my husband “something is wrong” and I feel like I’m a hundred years old! So after many trips to the doctor I have been diagnosed with severe depression, chronic fatigue, and mild hypothyroidism. It is now six years since I started drinking and eating this poison they call Aspartame! I have been put on all kinds of medications to treat the depression, fatigue, wieght gain, thyriod issues and I still didn’t feel any better! My doctors (yes that’s right! DOCTORS!!) said they can’t understand why I don’t feel any better. In fact…..I am getting worse and feel so out of control of my body and my life. So I decide to research my symptoms on the web and I came across my favorite thing to drink, ASPARTAME!!! Here I am, 90 pounds heavier, almost drained of any and all life I have in me and I find out that someone has been profiting off of my misery that they have caused by telling me it is a safe and healthier way to eat and drink!! What the hell is wrong with this world we live in? Been off the poison for just a little while and am feeling the withdrawel, but it will be so worth it just to feel like me again!!! Please tell people about this cause I didn’t know and the information has been there. So, sorry I have rambled on so. Just glad to say I now know why I haven’t felt the same since having my kid. Why didn’t the doctors warn me? I will write later to let others know how much this has helped (or not).

  99. naomi Says:


    How long has it been since you have been off it and how long has it taken for you to notice any changes? I hope you get better quick. I am going through the same thing and have been off it for a month, but still feel it….UGH

  100. Geneva Says:

    well i went back on it i could not stand the way i was feeling i have never felt like it ever in going to try agin soon i felt like i was starving my self and hungary alllllll the time and crying a lot like i was going crazyyy GOd bless u all here im trying agin soonnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnn

  101. Mary Says:

    What does everyone think of Tab as a substitute pop? Sacharrin has got to be the lesser of 2 evils in the artificial sweetner catagory, and it still has the caffine that I want. Any thoughts? Thanks! MJ

  102. Kristy Says:

    Naomi I’ve been off of it about the same amount of time you have and I’ve gotta say I am feeling somewhat better. The strangest things like my since of smell has been hieghtened, my energy levels are a little better, my eye sight is less hazy, and my headaches have allmost gone away except for a few sinus headaches. Crazy huh? Can’t wait for more improvements! I don’t know what will happen with my thyroid, but i hope it will reverse one day too. I’ll keep you posted. Hope you will keep me posted on your progress too.

  103. Jean Says:

    Holy crap! I am not going crazy afterall! I have been a diet coke drinker for about 16 years, sometimes drinking as much as 2 liters a day. Last Sunday I decided that I was going to go cold turkey-no diet soda, no artificial sweeteners whatsoever. I was ok for the first few days, then started having horrible migraines, joint aches (especially knees), fatigue, and nightmares. I could barely do a 30 minute workout on Thursday, when I am used to working out 5 days a week, 1 hour a day. I have noticed less cravings for sweets though. These headaches are the worst of all, but, I cannot go back to drinking that liquid poison. I am hoping the symptoms go away as time goes by. Good luck to everyone and please try not to use the toxic poisons!

  104. carla Says:

    I have fibromyalgia and lower back problems. I am 40 or 50 pounds overweight due to inability to exercize and cravings for food making it impossible to diet even with prescribed diet pills. I am 47 years old and feel like I am 80. I have been drinking 2 to 6 diet cokes per day and using aritificial sweetner in iced tea for years. A co-worker told me about the aspartame concerns. I did some research and decided to try doing without. My last diet coke was last Thursday, the 22nd. I have had no real side effects but am feeling sooo much better. This weekend I was in the mountains with my fiancee. Normally, I would do good to shuttle him to and from the trail before having to take pain meds and lie down. This time I was able to hike two miles and grill out and feel like a normal person. I think this is going to really help. I only think about a diet coke when I wake up in the mornings so I have orange juice instead. Improvements I have noted are with fatigue, pain, irritableness, depression and anxiety. We really should go after the FDA and the soft drink companies for ignoring the concerns about aspartame and other chemicals in their drinks.

  105. Kristy Says:

    Yes Carla, we should!! It has made me feel like 34 going on 100! Joint pain, headaches, cravings (followed by wieght gain), extreme fatigue, blurred vision, etc. How can they get away with poisoning people?! Isn’t the FDA there to protect us? Not if there is enough money to be made I guess. So sad. Feeling better now though. Happy about that!!Hopefully I’ll feel like myself again one of these days.

  106. carla Says:

    A neighbor said that he was having severe headaches. He was sent to a local neurologist who found nothing but did suggest that if he drank diet drinks he should avoid letting them get warm before consuming. We live in the south… they were warm long before they come under his control!!!! But I was glad to hear that a physician was taking the warnings that have begun circulating around seriously. I can’t wait to see more medical professionals making the connection. That will be brought about by patients speaking up and making their experiences known.

  107. Jessica Says:

    Hi everyone, I have drank diet coke for years, at least ten years probably. I used to drink like four a day, then I was diagnosed with a bladder disease two years ago and quit drinking it for a year. I didnt experience any withdrawal symptoms. well a year ago i started drinking it again, and iw ould have like one or two a day but then i would have other drinks with aspartame in them, like the diet juices, diet seltzer waters, etc. I began experienceing extreme nausea, migraines at least once a week, fatigue, and major cravings for carbs and stuff, and after reading about aspartame, i decided it was time to stop. i have been off of it only a few days now, and i am very nauseas, fatigued, headaches, weakness, i feel like i have the flu but i dont. Is this aspartame withdrawal????

  108. carla Says:

    Sounds like your experiencing what many others have reported. Just hang in there. Also, according to those reports, it does get better and is worth it to know you are getting this awful junk out of your system. My daughter, a twenty year old college student, has suffered from bladder infections, headaches, and stomach aches that feel like ulcers. She is allergic to ant bites (the formic acid in diet soda is the same chemical). When I told her about the aspartame chemicals she freaked! She hasn’t had a diet coke for a week. Also, she hasn’t had a headache or stomach ache since she left off the sodas. She’s hopeful that this will help. Good luck!

  109. Jessica Says:

    oh my gosh i didnt even connect that,i am allergic to ant bites too! I dont stop breathing or anything but wherever they bite me swells up like a balloon, and gets red and very itchy/painful. I had heard that the aspartame converts to formaldehyde and then converst to the same chemical as an ant bite but putting two and two together, geez that is even more reason to not have it anymore!!! I am feeling better today than I have so far, but very tired nonetheless. Still, I dont crave sugar/carbs as much, and the headache is starting to go away… thanks for the encouragement, and i am keeping passing the word on to everyone i know about this awful poison!

  110. carla Says:

    I’m glad that made sense. My daughter has the same reaction to ant bites that you do. But, when you think about it….it’s like being bitten inside your body rather than on your foot or something! Yikes!! You say your withdrawals feel like the flu but that will subside according to reports by others. I began to have flu like symptoms often before I knew to stop drinking diet cokes, so now I feel nothing but better. Apparently, the effects are cummulative. So over a period of 25 years ( I’ve been drinking diet coke since aspartame was added in 1983) I developed symptoms and continued to get worse. But I was drinking more diet coke than ever and had no idea that was contributing or even causing my symptoms. I am so glad to have found a solution to what I thought was going to be a condition that I would have for the rest of my life. It’s great that you heard about this before it got worse for you. Please continue to pass this information along to others. I can’t believe this stuff is good for anyone. Now is the time to get back to basics and drink water and 100% fruit juices. Everybody is trying to diet but making ourselves ill is not the way to do it. I am doing much better with dieting now that I am no longer craving carbs so badly – another side effect of diet sodas. I hope you continue to feel better.

  111. kim Says:

    Well it’s been about two months since I kicked the aspartame and I have not had one headace since the withdrawl ended. I have been on Imatrex for years for migraines and would normally have one or two a month. I am loving home made iced tea with a little stevia or just plain. I treat myself to a dr. pepper a couple of times a week and have my eating under control. The hunger pains while I was drinking the diet coke were unbelievable and impossible to ignore. Now I can just be aware of the hunger but it’s not like I can’t wait to eat dinner and have to grab something to tide me over. It’s remarkable how different I feel. I have lost weight since I quit but I don’t know how much, I feel it in my clothes and people have commented, but I don’t have a scale. I sleep very deeply and peacefully and wake up much more refreshed. I used to not be able to peel myself out of bed and now it’s little effort. As far as I know I have no more withdrawl symptoms unless I have just learned to live with them. With the exception of my vision. I have bouts of time when my eyes get blurry and that has happened since the day I quit. I have read of people that have gone temporarily blind from aspartame so if that is true I am sure my eyes may still be adjusting. Good luck to all. When I find a scale I will report on weight loss.

  112. carla Says:

    Kim…. Good for you!!!! Keep us posted. I am just going on my second week but I can tell a difference in cravings and hunger. Instead of having to rest so that I can get out of bed tomorrow, today I am working out in the yard. I haven’t been able to do that in years!!!

  113. Jessica Says:

    Well it is week two for me without diet coke, and the nausea is pretty much gone. no migraines since I quit drinking it. went to the movies the other night and my sister ordered a diet coke (with me nagging in her ear the whole time). I took a sip just to see if i would be able to taste the chemical, and i was! ewwww! i have lost about five pounds so far. the cravings for carbs are like HALF if not more than they were! still very tired, but who knows that may just be cuz i dont sleep well anyway! 🙂

  114. Melissa Says:

    Today is my second day off of my beloved diet cherry pepsi. I take two excedrin migraine pills in the morning to fend off the caffeine withdrawals. So far I feel pretty good! My ‘brain fog’ isn’t there anymore. I haven’t experienced any withdrawal symptoms yet. (crossing my fingers.) I am 28 years old, and my memory has declined severely in the past year. I have also noticed a poor complexion, thinning hair, and a general lethargic attitude. My diet cherry coke habit was increasing to about 5-6 cans a day. (even with my breakfast!)

       I have been watching food labels like a hawk, but what really concerns me is the fact that there is fake sweetener in my toothpaste and mouthwash! (sodium saccharin) I'm going to have to look for a natural alternative... Many labels are evasive. My chewable vitamins mention 'natural and artificial flavors,' instead of a specific ingredient.
  115. Melissa Says:

    I have been watching food labels like a hawk, but what really concerns me is the fact that there is fake sweetener in my toothpaste and mouthwash! (sodium saccharin) I’m going to have to look for a natural alternative… Many labels are evasive. My chewable vitamins mention ‘natural and artificial flavors,’ instead of a specific ingredient.

  116. carla Says:

    Most sweetener’s and additives are things we get in a small dose that probably doesn’t do much damage- according to reports. Finding one specific thing to eliminate (such as diet soft drinks since we know about the other stuff and chemical break downs in heat)is a signigficant place to start. I drink a diet green tea or peach tea if I am dying for “the fix”. But I drink only half and am satisfied. With the diet cokes I used to consume, I drank one or two , first thing! I couldn’t get enough. Now I am back on a lower carb diet because I do’t have cravings for carbs. I have lost 5 lbs. and am counting.

  117. carla Says:

    P.S. I continue to enjoy two cups of coffee in the morning. I haven’t felt the need to limit caffine. I wanted to monitor the effects of leaving off the aspartame first. I continue to feel better. I would not drink a diet coke again for anything. I can’t explain my commitment to that except that it would just feel so wrong for my body. I keep bottled or jugged water in the fridge. It may not be what I am craving but it satisfies me in the end!

  118. Jessica Says:

    well i have been off of diet coke for about three weeks now…. no more nausea! and about half of the cravings for carbs now! i also am not hardly any fatigued anymore, not like i used to be. and, no more headaches/migraines!

  119. Kristy Says:

    Hey everyone! It’s been over a month now and my muscles have finally stopped aching. At first that didn’t happen, after being off for a week or so I ached all over like I had the flu. Now I have more energy too. I used to have to peel myself out of bed every day too. Haven’t lost any wieght yet but since I’m feeling better I figure I will start exercising as soon as my back heals. Great to hear so many people have gotten off this poison. Good luck everyone!

  120. naomi Says:


    how is the depression?

  121. Kristy Says:

    I am off my Lexapro and doing fine! Wierd huh? And I had tried a number of times to get off it only to be told by my doctor that I would probably always have to take some kind of antidepressant. I know you are suppose to come off it a little at a time, but I ran out and noticed this isn’t sooo bad, so I never refilled. I have had some shaky days but, overall, have felt good so I think I might tell my doctor when I’ve been off of it for atleast 3 or 4 months so she won’t insist I go back on it. Then I plan to tell her that I cut out Aspartame. So far I have found sooo many things that have changed for the better with my health and am convinced that the Aspartame was the cause of these conditions. I am down to taking only my thyroid medicaton. Hoorah!

  122. Kristy Says:

    Naomi, How have you been feeling? Hope the best for you.

  123. Jessica Says:

    so many good reports from everyone who has cut out aspartame. I am convinced that this is the cause of many many issues and am so glad to be off of it!!!

  124. naomi Says:


    I am SO glad to hear that you are feeling better. As for me, the depression is mostly gone, don’t feel so heavy in the head anymore if that makes sense. Still feel anxious, which only started with the aspartame so I am hoping it goes away too. This has been the worst. How is everyone doing with checking labels? My husband thinks I am crazy but I am into checking EVERYTHING. I won’t even eat some sweets now at parties if they are homemade because I do not know what is in them, don’t want to look silly and ask, and would rather avoid another ingestion. Sound crazy?

  125. Lynn Scheinoha Says:

    Please, please everyone – – never stop a medication (especially an antidepressant) without getting insructions from your doctor ! I totally agree that antidepressants aren’t always the answer for every person, but it is SOOOO dangerous to stop them abruptly. These are psychotropic medications that can do terrible things to your mind when stopped abruptly. My 24 year old daughter did this on her own and though the entire matter is more complicated that just that – she ended up dying from suicide – so please please only stop medications under direct supervision of your Dr. In regard to the diet soda – – – if you look hard, you will be able to find diet soda that is sweetened with Splenda. This is healthier than asparteme (if you are going to drink soda at all), however the caffiene is another whole issue. YES you will get headaches if you stop abruptly – best is to wean yourself off a little each day. Moderation is the key. If you need SOME, just don’t get carried away, but, again, please don’t just stop cold turkey. Good luck everyone ! Lynn

  126. Kristy Says:

    Dear Lynn, sooo sorry to hear about your daughter, that is awful. I know I am suppose to come off it slowly and should’nt have stopped them completely. I don’t recommend anyone do what I have done. I do feel just fine though and am keeping tabs on how I feel day by day. I had someone in my family take their own life and I know that these medications are nothing to mess around with. I do however, believe that the aspartame was the cause of the imbalance. I feel better than I’ve felt in Years. Again, I am so sorry about your daughter, no mother should have to go through that.

  127. Kelly T. Says:

    I have had migraines, vision problems (I have a foggy stationary spot in my left eye that makes it hard to see) achy joints, frequent colds, nausea, bloating and ulcer-like symptoms, joint pain and a strange rash on my stomach. I am a 22 year old, very fit college student/ballet dancer who generally eats an all-organic well rounded diet. Because my career requires I keep my weight pretty low I started to eat a lot of diet products and diet sodas that contain aspartame (and other fake sugars) and never made the connection. I had a neurologist diagnose me with possible MS due to tingling in my legs, vision problems, etc. Recently I made the connection between my vision problem and my aspartame consumption (due to my nutritionist-mothers nagging) and quit cold turkey. I have had a headache and dizziness but I have had more energy, a much brighter mood, and I am sleeping much better. This chemical is poison! Avoid it at all costs. I will never consume this junk again. Mom was right, as always. :p Stay away from aspartame!

  128. nic Says:

    I have just turned 36 years old, yet feel 100… i have been drinking probably 4 LITERS of diet pepsi/coke for over 14 years (plus god only knows how many 600 ml bottles added to the liters). for years now i have battled headaches , anxiety ,horrible night vision,depression, etc.., but in the last 5-6 months everything has become worse. I don’t know what it’s like not to have some type of constant headache, my joints ache , my legs/hands/ go numb all of a sudden, gastritis, colitis, constant thirst(thus urge to urinate constantly as well) i can’t remember when i slept thru the night (wake up 3-4 times at least), constant fatigue, highs and lows in mood, ringing ears, heavy legs, urge for sweets…you name it… 2 months ago i went to the doctor .she has checked me for diabetes, autoimmune disorders, rhumatiod factor, protein c reaction, etc…can’t find anything..(except that my cholesteral is 231, wierd since i don’t eat hardly any animal fats,dairy etc) my heart raising bouts have increased, anxiety increased and insomnia increased, the doctor ordered a tyroid test (get results on july 8) and prescribed me 10mg of diazepam to help me sleep at night.. i am so tired i can barely function, the more i feel tired, the more diet pepsi i drink…i feel as if i am crazy… my son, a med student is starting to think i’m crazy as well (constantly looking for some obscure disease on internet that would explain my ever growing list of symptoms)today, i believe i found it… i just found an article on aspartame poisening and believe i have it… i have decided to go cold turkey, starting now…wish me luck… i will also consult my doctor about my aspartame findings on july 8…. keep your fingers crossed !

  129. Kristy Says:

    Hey Nic! Good for you! The same with me, I just got on the internet and started looking up symptoms and I just happen to end up here. Hang in there, at first you won’t feel better, you’ll probably feel worse. But after about a month you’ll start seeing improvements in the way you feel. After a couple of months you’ll feel like your old self again! I’m still seeing improvements! Good luck!!!

  130. nic Says:

    well, i just presented my aspartame theory to my med school son, who of course thinks i’m nuts and that by next week i will surely have a new illness brought on by internet surfing…. i told him i will also be telling my dr. about it on the 8th when i go for my thyroid results…. looks like the bets on….

  131. nic Says:

    well, i have made it thru my first 24 hours without caffeine or aspartame. i stopped at 7-11 as i always do every morning, made it to the sodas, and found myself lost…didn’t know what to get… i left with a water…i felt good in the morning, i think being revved up to kick the habit had me on a high, by mid day a dull headache… i am an avid vitamin taker (since aquiring so many rare symptoms), so that may be on my side… to be on the safe side i upped my vitamin c and magnesium, also upped my nopal pills for fiber flushing..not feeling bad, actually maybe a tad better than normal… i have noticed my hand have not tingled today, still some numbness in my right ankle and foot.. i have noticed a bit more appetite today (but i have eaten just chicken and veggies and a bit of turkey breat on whole grain toast)…i hope the other withdrawal symptoms don’t kick in as i’ve been reading seem to hit in the 2- 4th day… just thought i’d check in on my first 24 hours…

  132. Kristy Says:

    Hey Nic! Hang in there! Most people I tell about the Aspartame symptoms act like I’m crazy too. The point is, I don’t care what they think, I just know I feel alot better and my last thyroid check was almost normal. They can keep putting that poison in their system if they want. I think it affects some people more harshly than others. I’m sensitive to alot of medications and such, so maybe it would affect me on different levels than some. The thing is, it is a poison and it will affect more and more people as time goes on. But the symptoms are not obvious to most people or even doctors. So we need to tell these doctors that have been treating us over the years how we feel after getting off the aspartame. I still have not told any of my doctors cause I wanted time to get it out of my system first and show them the way my body has healed. Give it a little time and you will have proof what you say is true. Good luck to you and everyone!

  133. Kristy Says:

    Oh! One last thing. Do any of you know of any other web sites that discuss apartame?

  134. Donald Says:

    I am on my 7th day of going cold turkey with the artificial sweeteners, I was having 4-8 packets a day mostly with morning decaff coffee but also diet coke 3 or 4 times a week. I went cold turkey for no other reason but to test weight loss and boy was I surprised by the withdrawal symptoms, the body aches, depression and fever led me to this site….I am hopeful that the symptons will be gone soon, I even gave up a game of golf today…..and thats a big deal!

  135. Kim Says:

    Hey all!! So good to hear all your success stories! I am still clean and feeling great. I have lost 25 pounds since I quit consuming any artificial sweetners. I am doing absolutely nothing else different in my life so there is nothing else to attribute the weight loss to. Oh, except I meditate a few times a week and am an official Eckart Tolle freak now. I feel like I am moving toward a natural balance in my body. Sleep continues to be deep and restful, no headaches of any kind, and this has been my longest run without a migraine in over 10 years. This is one of the best things I can ever remember doing for myself. I continue to check back and hear about everyone’s “recovery”. I don’t preach the poisons of aspartame to anyone unless they ask but everyone knows what a junkie I was and so it comes up quite a bit. When I tell people they find it very hard to believe I really don’t touch it any more. Congratulations! one poor unfortunate diet coke drinking soul at a time.

  136. Donald Says:

    This is the strangest thing I have ever experienced with my body….Last night I had very heavy leggs, painfull, raising them helped, also had very vivid dreams that were not pleasant at all, I have had tingling sesations throughout my body today as well, my fingers swelled up during an afternoon walk, that may have been the heat though… 102. Things that I used to do routinly I am now blowing off, I think becuase of depression…..I am having no craving for the stuff at all, which I find to be strange. I have told 2 people what I am going through and they both think I am nutty as a fruit cake…Oh well, I look forward to the end of withdrawl.

  137. Chris Says:

    Hang in there, everyone! I stopped drinking 2 to 3 Diet Cokes per day about 3 weeks ago. I experienced many of the same problems that I’ve read about here, which helped make up my mind to quit, and most of those problems are now gone. I haven’t stopped caffeine, but did cut back on it. I have lost a few pounds, and am sleeping better. I have also experienced the disappearance of the intense craving for carbs, which I’m sure contributed to the weight loss. Withdrawal issues I’ve had have been minor, and similar to other reports here, so I won’t repeat them. What I want to emphasize to everyone is that it DOES get better – just give it more time, and keep drinking water to help flush out the toxins.

  138. Carole Says:

    Thank you to all that posted…it did a lot to reassure me that I wasn’t going crazy. I decided to give up Diet Coke in June because of the caffeine—not asparatame. It was brutal. I felt horrible for 2-3 weeks, and that was just Diet Coke. I was continuing to eat other items with artificial sweeteners as well as substituting Caffeine Free Diet Coke for the regular stuff. At some point in July, I decided that I really didn’t like caffeine free and that I would give it up as well as other artificial sweeteners. Since then I have had the symptoms reported by many here…a fever, headaches, extreme fatique, random aches, muscle twitches, and dizziness. It was the dizziness that got me in to see the doctor. I’ve had a pretty healthy life, until the last couple of years and this was yet another thing to add to the list. She never thought of asparatame and I did report to her that I gave up Diet Coke. Incidentally, I should add that I gave up sugar as well at the same time. CRAZY–don’t recommend doing both at the same time. It’s been a few weeks and I’m a little bit better, but have a long way to go. I also realized that even though I thought I was off of everything, i wasn’t because I usually chew a couple pieces of Eclipse gum a day and that has artificial sweeteners in it so that goes as of now and I’m certain will add to my symptoms.

  139. Ben Says:

    I am so glad I found this site! About one week ago I started having severe headaches. They really never totally went away. I have also had a lot of pain in the back of my head right above my neck. I have felt like my head was “foggy” and it has been difficult at times to even turn my head. I have taken more ibuprofen in the last week then I ever have. (I rarely get headaches.)

    Finally, I thought about the fact that I just gave up Diet Coke cold turkey. I have been a diet soft drink user for about 25 years. I thought I had heard something about cafeeine withdrawal so I started googling. I found this website, and oh my! Everyone here is or has experienced what I am currently experiencing. I just turned 39 years old and am about 60 lbs overweight. I, like others here have mentioned, feel like I am about 69 years old. I am going to do a little more investigating about aspartime. I usually drink about 20-40 oz/day of Diet Coke, and I also like to chew Extra sugar-free gum. (I would chew it at work after lunch eat day and at night too.)

    Anyway, after reading all the posts here I have hope. Now that I know what is happening to me I feel much better…well, not physically…my head are neck are killing me, but you know what I mean.

    I have bookmarked this page and will let you know how it is going. I can’t wait to experience the benefits many you have experienced.

  140. CPWDC Says:

    I really appreciate all of the comments here about Diet Coke/Aspartame addiction. I am on day 8 of being Diet Coke free. I was up to 6 per day without even thinking about it. Horrible, but honestly, it was my treat when I got up in the morning, mid morning, lunch of course, afternoon and early evening. I stopped DC by drinking regular Coke, no more than 2 per day. The first week was relatively easy, but week two I am having difficult concentrating, extremely irritable and paranoid. I stopped the regular Coke and now it’s just coffee and tea. The hard thing is that you don’t get the same feeling after these beverages than you do with DC. It’s hard to focus at work and I don’t feel like I have my normal positive attitude. I hate that an ingredient in a soft drink had such control of my emotions and general body feeling. It helps to read the success stories here that eventually gets better. Thanks.

  141. ginnym Says:

    thanks for this site! i have been off of diet drinks and aspartame for about 10 days now. i didn’t think i could ever do it. i was drinking about 3 liters of diet sunkist a day. i still have a small amouunt of caffeine from tea, but it’s almost nothing compared to what i was drinking. i am convinced that the aspartame is far more harmful. did you know that aspartame turns into formaldahyde once it’s in your body? that’s what we preserved dead things with in biology isn’t it? it should never have been approved by FDA. do some research online. it is POISON! i already feel SO much better even though i’ve had withdrawal headaches, fuzzy brain, aches and pains, etc. i feel alive again! yay!

  142. Nadine Says:

    I’m very happy to find this forum. I am a true Diet Coke addict–I’ve been on and off of it for years. I’m going through still another withdrawal, and this has been the worst one. Last night I woke at 2:00 a.m. with a blinding headache, and my brain was begging me for a “fix.” I took some aspirin and went back to bed. I’m normally very health conscious, but this is a powerful addiction. I know I’ll be fine–I’ve gotten to the other side before–but I appreciate this site and knowing I am not alone. Thanks.

  143. Tracy Says:

    Yesterday was the first day in over 5 years that I have not had at least 2 small bottles of diet cola. I started feeling a bit nervy and craving d.c in the evening, but ignored it. I woke up today with nausea, a really bad headache and dizziness. I’m really tempted to just buy a can and feel better but I will try and stick it out!

  144. Julia Says:

    I stopped drinking regular colas about a year and a half ago. I started drinking diet colas only. I have found out that I cannot drink diet colas with aspartame at all. I drink water or juice. Aspartame/equal used to give me migraine headaches. I thought I could introduce it back into my diet, a little a a time. I was wrong. It now makes my tongue swell, as well as my lips. I have had to go to the ER four times, as my breathing becomes restricted. I am learning to like water!

    The only diet drinks without aspartame are Diet Rite Cola and Diet RC brands. They are made with Splenda.

  145. Beth M. Says:

    This was an interesting discussion to read. I love sodas, mostly for the carbonation. I know I need to cut back, and found this blog while looking for info on how to cut out sodas. I know the caffeine withdrawal will be a force to deal with!

    I am also glad to read that others are realizing that aspartame is HORRIBLE for you! Diet sodas? Pul-lease. There have been no real diet sodas since they pulled saccharine from soda (by the way, the “affected” rats were fed the equiv of 600 sodas a day. Even I can’t drink that much! Also, saccharine was cleared and is back on the market). I used to love Tab and Fresca. The new versions just don’t taste very good.

    I’ve found I am highly sensitive, bordering allergic to aspartame. If I drink even 1/2 a can of soda with it, my tongue and mouth swell up, and I have to take a prednisone! Yikes! : -( So much for diet sodas, since almost all have it in there now. The only one I’ve found without it is Diet Rite sodas (which use Splenda). So, the sugar-free chewing gums and sodas and other foods are out of the picture for me, since I am not willing to take prednisone just for a drink or chew!

    The MSG has even more implications than many folks realize – we’ve cut it out of our whole family’s foods. That cut out more foods than we ever thought it would. Were you aware that almost everything with a cheddar cheese flavor will have MSG added? Yup – try finding a cheesy snack food without it! The worst? Cheez-Its! Admittedly, not on everyone’s list, but I used to love to eat them. I always felt horrible the next day, but never connected it to the little crackers until I cut them out entirely. Why did I cut them entirely out? After my hubby absentmindedly ate an entire box during a tv, and became suicidal. Yup – so depressed that he could barely move, think or reason, and was so low, he wanted to die. It passed after a couple days, thankfully. We have since paid very close attention, and noted that it was MSG that was triggering these feelings and emotions.

    If you know someone who is extremely depressed or even having suicidal thoughts, check with them on what they are eating! While depression is a chemical imbalance in the brain, that imbalance came from somewhere… and diet is one of the first culprits, and most overlooked by the medical profession! See if they are eating Lays flavored potato chips (any flavor – all those powdery coatings are full of chemical flavor enhancers), snack crackers or other foods laden with MSG…

    It took two days to get the effects out of hubby’s system. He was lucky. Now think of how many folks allow their kids to have chips or crackers in their school lunches, and wonder why their child is having behavior or school problems. Their thought processes are probably taking serious hits from the chemicals!

    MUCH better to go high protein. Even those plain cracker sticks with the cheese foods in them would beat a chip bag in their lunches. How about real cheese sticks? Much better!

    MSG and Aspartame are being completely overlooked as a major source of weight issues, depression and other emotional issues, and possibly even factors in other health problems. I have an ADHD son, and am carefully watching what he eats to note the difference. For example, he cannot have any of the candies with the sour coating on them – it makes him ballistic.

    There are so many items added to our foods these days in the name of shelf life that I wonder what we are doing to ourselves. It can’t be good….

    And by the way – my soda addiction? I’ve had it all my life. So, looking for serious help to get off of it (not just changing to another brand, etc – already tried that!). I did not know until recently that it could leach calcium from my body! I’ve been having severe dental problems for the first time in my life, so I think the calcium problems are catching up with me.

    Wow – wish I had known years ago!

  146. Beth M. Says:

    Also, for those who are getting off diet sodas, don’t forget that you are fighting BOTH aspartame and caffeine! That is rough!

    Please go ahead and have some sort of caffeine while you wean off the sodas – it is a blood vessel constrictor, and you can have headaches so bad you’ll give up if you don’t have a little bit!

    Try regular soda (the extra cals won’t add up that fast – believe me) or strong tea, but don’t go cold turky on the caffeine! It is so hard on your body.

    Also – for anyone who wondered – my hubby went through 2-3 weeks of joint pain, headaches and flu-like symptoms getting off all MSG, but it was very worth it. He has not had a migraine since then, and no more extreme depression! Note that we sometimes find hidden MSG in foods just because of a mood swing experienced when eating it. He had to give up his beloved Campbell’s Chunky Soups too! Those are LOADED with MSG believe it or not! I would not have even looked, but something was giving him mood swings. Sure enough – buried in tiny print on the label, MSG. So, no more Chunky Soups either! : /

    We also cut out ALL Hamburger Helper. It “helps” by adding MSG to the sauce packets! No thanks! You can buy regular pasta, a jar of sauce without MSG, and help your own hamburger without the additives! : )

    Hard to believe how much junk there is in the “convenience” foods!

  147. Beth M. Says:

    Okay, one last thing – and I’ll stop blog-hogging! (I just really love this discussion!)

    I’ve found a good sweetener substitute that doesn’t cause the blood sugar spikes with STEVIA. I have some liquid in a dropper bottle, and bought a box of little packets for tea and cereal, etc. It actually seems sweeter than saccharine to me, so I only use 1/2 packet in a big glass of iced tea. (I have hypoglycemia and hypothyroid, so blood sugar changes are very noticable to me.)

    There is a website called VitaCost dot com where you can also buy flavored drops to add to plain carbonated water. We are ordering a few flavors this week to see how they taste. I am hoping it will help me get off Pepsi entirely! : )

  148. Carole Says:

    Beth, That is very interesting about your husband’s problem with msg. Personally I keep trying to eat purer and purer, especially since giving up sugar, asparatame, splenda and caffeine. For those of you browsing and thinking you can’t possibly do it, you can. It isn’t easy, that is for sure. I slipped up on the sugar last week with Halloween, but I’m back on track. I’m also hypothyroid and have gained and gained weight through the years and not able to get rid of it. Since giving up those things, I’ve shed 25 pounds while eating more food…more vegetables, more fruit, more meat. Less processed carbs because of the additives in processed foods. But I’m not perfect and still love pizza and still eat plenty of “bad” foods because it’s comfort.

    The other thing I should add is this—I had many physical symptoms when I gave all this up, but one of the worst things was the emotional elements. Many of use that overeat sugar, gulp down diet pop or regular pop use it for emotional reasons. If you would have asked me about it, I would have admitted that yes, I’m an emotional eater, but I don’t “need” it. Wrong. I found that I was irritable as anything because I didn’t have the sugar and Diet Coke to fall back on. Plan for that.

    Finally, 2 months later, how am I doing? Well, great. I feel physically younger than ever, and I look better too. My biggest frustration is what to drink. I do like water, always did. But sometimes I just want something flavored. Many times I desperately want a Diet Coke. I haven’t gotten over that and don’t know when or if I ever will. But then I think about how I felt getting over asparatame and walk away.


  149. jan kreutzer Says:

    I have been drinking diet coke for years & for the last 2 years 2 litres of crystal lite per day. I have high bp& possibly hi chloresteral. find out Monday. Also have acute fibrillation. I’ve had both hips replaced as was very active in my younger days. Now 61. Still walk 5-6 miles per day on a treadmill. 90 minutes. Stopped Aspartame 10 days ago. Felt like I was gonna die. Nausia, irratic heart beat, and anxiety, to name a few withdrawal symtems. Just felt horrible. This is the first day I feel pretty good. How long does it take to get out of your system. Can I do anything to expedite it.

  150. Carole Says:

    Jan, It took me about a month, but maybe a little longer to feel completely normal. So you are getting close. Believe me, it was HARD. I also gave up sugar at the same time—really stupid. Keep it up and update your story. c

  151. Sarah Says:

    I drank alot of diet coke every day and ate many things with aspartame in them (for about 20years!). Three years ago I started to have alot of muscle problems and was diagnosed with a thyroid problem (low)…The last few years have been pretty bad despite being on thyroid medicine (T4 and armour)… I have had trouble sleeping, headaches, tinnitus, low carnitine, muscle aches. No one could figure out what was wrong with me. Every doctor i went to wanted to give me anti-depressants but they didn’t work… I still couldn’t sleep. Ambien didn’t even work. 90 days ago I stopped eating anything with aspartame in it. The first few days I felt so much better (and was sleeping without taking anything!!) until the withdrawal symptoms started… mostly headaches, upper backaches, dizziness, early morning anxiety and trouble sleeping through the night. The most interesting thing is that my carnitine level has gone from much below normal to only 1 point below normal.. this is the highest it has been in the last two years (nothing else has helped it). I get that tested again in a few more weeks. I suspect my low carnitine might be why my withdrawal is lasting so long. I am still getting headaches but they are not as bad as they were before. I also get dizzy spells which are very strange… like I have been drugged when I am avoiding anything that is not natural. Now days I can tell when I am going to have trouble sleeping because whenever I have a headache and dizziness I am up all night no matter how tired I am…

    I am a bit worried because it sounds like most people here feel better within the first two months. I still think I am suffering aspartame withdrawal and hope that it doesn’t last too much longer. I also hope that this isn’t permanent damage.

    The other thing that might be complicating my withdrawal is my thyroid. I am wondering if i was taking too much thyroid to compensate for the affect of the aspartame.

    The best thing so far is that my skin has really cleared up. I had acne on my face, chest, back, neck and upper arms. That is about 90% better and that happened within the first two weeks of stopping the aspartame.

    Thanks for listening!

  152. Jodi Says:

    Thank goodness I just did a google search on diet coke withdrawal and found this site. Ditto to every bad thing caused by it. Been drinking it for over 30 years and I feel horrible. Thanks to all of you I have the courage to quit drinking it. I’m now aware of the withdrawal symptoms and will be prepared. It is going to be a new me! Thank you, thank you, thank you. You have all probably saved my life!

  153. Kristi Says:

    I am on Day Three with no artificial sweeteners and have been a DIE-HARD diet coke/diet dr. pepper drinker for years and years. I was SO sick with headaches that I decided to drink caffeineated tea to get me through the withdrawal…I was so sick today I drank tea with real sugar. I figured I better just give up one evil at a time. Those who know me are so surprised I’m giving up the artificial sweeteners-I was a true addict, both psychologically and physically. I am drinking sparkling water to give me the fizz that I miss with a splash of lemon juice. It’s certainly not the same but will have to do…

  154. Traci Says:

    I am on day 6 of quitting diet soda. My drink of choice was diet mountain dew. I was drinking 5 or 6 cans a day. That’s over 60 ounces!!! I thought I was addicted to the caffeine so I decided to make green tea (unsweetened) my alternative drink. Now, I am pretty sure I was addicted to the aspartame because I am still getting caffeine through the green tea, but man have the headaches come on strong. As horrible as it sounds, I am glad there are other diet soda addicts out there to share with. My husband laughed me off when I said I wanted to quit. “Quit?” he said, “it’s not like you are doing drugs. It can’t be hard.” Really, the nerve of him. I have had a few cravings which are also hard to explain to him, but here I am on day 6. I accidentally ate a yogurt with aspartame today so I will start reading those labels more carefully at the store. Good luck to you all.

  155. joe Says:

    While I am not 100% convinced my problems revolved completely around aspartame, I stopped intake about 2 weeks ago cold turkey. I will say this much, the vivid/strange dreams appear over and my mood has settled down.

    My tinnitus is just as bad and I am drinking fluids like a marathon runner and still feeling dehydrated. Mouth is dry a lot. I can not go off of caffeine (have tried in the past) so I am sticking with coffee and a little sugar.

    Joint pain is still there, all though it doesn’t seem as bad but it may just be in my head that it is improving. Overall I think I do feel a little better, but the tinnitus is what I would really love to see improve. We’ll see.

    Good luck to everyone else out there. Seems like it can be a rough ride..

  156. Florence Says:

    I am glad I quit before I read all this because it all scares me now..We had a terribly cold Winter and it stopped me from drinking cold pop which I was hooked on for twenty years and I was also getting so sick of dragging all those heavy cubes home all the time so I quit …I knew I would need caffeine so I bought the half caffeine coffee and that is working well. Its been roughly two months I have gone off the diet Pepsi and I don’t have severe heart burn any more. I had it all the time and before and couldn’t eat any pork or chicken without paying for it and now I feel good I don’t have any heartburn at all. I don’t make my coffee strong and I know there is only half the caffeine in it and thank God for the cold Winter because I could not have quit otherwise. I used to have terrible leg pains, charlie horses and my son was saying he did too and we started eating a banana a day and we don’t have any leg pains now. I read somewhere that the phosphoric acid in pop whether sugar or diet can take the calcium out of us so is it a wonder we are aching all over? I get so sick of finding out how those companies poison us to make a buck. All processed foods have junk in them..we have to start eating more plants and less stuff from those company plants. Hang in there guys I know there will be a better feeling in time for all of you. Take it slow, moderation in all things and try to wean yourself off of it and eventually you will feel better. Every seven years every cell in our bodies is completely changed and I like to think of that. take care

  157. Florence Says:

    Our bodies are amazing and can heal a lot once the thing causing the damage is removed so don’t give up.

  158. Kristi Says:

    Day 23 of no Diet soft drinks! Yay!! I never thought I could do it, but it hasn’t been completely awful…Maybe it’s all in my head but I really think my craving for sweets is better. And I don’t feel as bloated. If I can give them up, ANYBODY can!!!

  159. Neil Says:

    I’m only on day 2 of no aspartame; can anyone clue me in for what I am in store? Daily 3-packs of Equal in my iced teas at work, and then mass quantities of Turkey Hill Diet Green Tea at night with an occasional Coke Zero or Pepsi One. I stopped cold turkey. Worst for me the past two weeks has been the anxiety attacks.

  160. Gaines Says:

    Most scientific studies have found no adverse effects of aspartame ingestion,[35][36][37][38][39] but some have reported adverse effects associated with very high dosages of aspartame, or in certain susceptible groups.[40][41][42] One study associated headaches with doses lower than the acceptable daily intake.[43]

    The debate over possible adverse health effects has focused[44] mainly on three metabolites of aspartame that occur naturally in the body — methanol, phenylalanine and aspartic acid — and on aspartylphenylalanine diketopiperazine, a breakdown product of aspartame before ingestion.

    [edit] Methanol and formaldehyde

    Approximately 10% of aspartame (by mass) is broken down into methanol in the small intestine. Most of the methanol is absorbed and quickly converted into formaldehyde and then to formic acid.[45] The metabolism of aspartame does not damage the body because: (a) the quantity of methanol produced is too small to disrupt normal physiological processes; (b) methanol and formaldehyde are natural by-products of human metabolism and are safely processed by various enzymes; (c) there is more methanol in some natural fruit juices and alcoholic beverages than is derived from aspartame ingestion;[46][47] and (d) even large doses of pure methanol have been shown in non-human primate studies to lead to ample accumulation of formic acid (as formate), while no formaldehyde was detected.[48]

    In experiments on rodents given radiolabeled aspartame, labeled protein and DNA accumulated in the brain, liver, kidneys and other tissues after ingestion of either 20 mg/kg or 200 mg/kg of aspartame.[45] However, these scientists were not directly measuring formaldehyde, but simply measuring levels of some by-product of the methanol from aspartame.[46]

    [edit] Phenylalanine

    50% of aspartame by mass is broken down into phenylalanine, one of the nine essential amino acids commonly found in foods and precursor to Tyrosine. A rise in blood plasma phenylalanine is negligible in typical use of aspartame[49] and their studies show no significant effects on neurotransmitter levels in the brain or changes in seizure thresholds.[50][51][52] Adverse effects of phenylalanine on fetuses have been observed only when blood phenylalanine levels remain at high levels as opposed to spiking occasionally.[53]

    [edit] Aspartic acid

    40% of aspartame by mass is broken down into aspartic acid (aspartate), a natural amino acid of proteins. At high concentrations, aspartic acid can act as an excitotoxin, inflicting damage on brain and nerve cells,[54][55] but aspartate does not normally cross the blood-brain barrier in most parts of the brain without active uptake by transporters.[56]

    Humans and other primates are not as susceptible to excitotoxins as rodents; therefore, it is problematic to make conclusions about human safety from high-dose excitoxin response in rodent studies.[57][58] Increases in blood plasma levels of aspartic acid after ingestion of aspartame are insufficient to cause concern for human subjects researchers.[59][60]

    [edit] Aspartylphenylalanine diketopiperazine

    Aspartylphenylalanine diketopiperazine, a type of diketopiperazine (DKP), is created in products as aspartame breaks down over time. For example, researchers found that 6 months after aspartame was put into carbonated beverages, 25% of the aspartame had been converted to DKP.[61]

    Concern among some scientists has been expressed that this form of DKP would undergo a nitrosation process in the stomach producing a type of chemical that could cause brain tumors.[16][62] However, the nitrosation of aspartame or the DKP in the stomach likely does not produce chemicals that cause brain tumors. In addition, only a minuscule amount of the nitrosated chemical can be produced.[63] There are very few human studies on the effects of this form of DKP. However, a (one-day) exposure study showed that the DKP was tolerated without adverse effects.[64]

  161. cal Says:

    currently at 2 weeks of eliminating (after years of use) – 4 diet cokes per day – 4 sugar free hot chocolate packs per day – 1 bowl of sugar free jello per day.

    feeling great, but had headache for two days (have never had a headache in my life) no more gas, bloating, late afternoon fog BUT have a tingling / cold neuropothy in my hands. has anyone experienced this? thanks

  162. justaguywhoquit Says:

    Please don’t listen to the people who are trying to downplay the seriousness of this.

    My story is that I have developed a neurological problem and had read about reports of aspartame possibly causing such issues. Just to be sure it was not the cause of my problem, I quit drinking anything with this poison in it.

    In short, for the last 3 weeks since I quit and that is the only change I made in my lifestyle, I had been having what I would have to call withdrawal symptoms. I have woken with racing heart at night, nausea of a sever degree and night sweats where I wake and my hair is soaked. Now in the 4th week the nausea is getting better and I am not waking with the problems I have had.

    Another couple of common symptoms I have experienced are in about the 2nd to 3rd week I had gotten the sore spots on my tongue. I also find that it is hard to quench my thirst.

    I have to say it is much to soon to know if aspartame has any relationship to my neurological problems but I will hold on to this silver lining as long as I can.

    So it is clear there is no relation here, the neurological problem is weakness in my leg muscles and does not cause any sickness.

    I am sure aspartame affects everyone differently and I may be more sensitive to it but these problems it caused were very real and very severe with me.

    I am sure most others that mention headaches were mostly caused by the caffeine in their drink of choice. I did not drink caffeinated diet soda and still drink a few cups of coffee daily. I don’t overdo the coffee and have cut down in the past. Headache has not been part of my withdrawal symptoms.

    The only reason I am writing this is so those thinking of quitting may have help to make their decision. I would also hope this helps some maintain their resolve in not drinking this poison again.

    God bless and stay strong.

  163. Angela Says:

    I too have been drinking aspertame sweetened drinks in excess(6-16oz bottles a day) for many years. I had the flu about a month ago and decided to stop the diet drinks then as they really didn’t taste good when I was sick. I was just so dehydrated that only water would do. I decided that this was a great time to never get started on it again. Well, it seems that the withdrawal symptoms are so similar to the flu I feel like I still have the flu 4 weeks later. I have never been able to use Splenda in place of aspertame because it gives me migranes. I have in the past experienced muscle and joint pain and acid reflux while drinking the aspertame products, these symptoms are much diminished since stopping although, I am now really lethargic(I sleep A LOT), have headaches, and just feel generally crappy since stopping the Aspertame. I am very surprised that no one has mentioned Stevia here. Stevia is a NATURAL sweetener(with no known side effects) that has been used for centuries in South America. It is available in the U.S. but is not approved by the FDA(sold as a dietary supplement as are vitamins) as a part of political red tape due to Equal and Splenda keeping it off the market. Recently Coke and Pepsi have been getting involved(they have been offering the stevia sweetened products in other countries for years) and hopefully there will be a future soda product available in the U.S. that will have this as a sweetener. It is calorie free and has a zero glycemic index(doesn’t raise blood sugar levels) for those diabetic people out there. Pepsi(Purevia) and Coke(Truvia) have already started producing the sweetener packets that can be used in tea, coffee, etc. I don’t think soda is a great idea with any kind of sweetener but I think the Stevia sweetener has to be a better alternative.

  164. theresa Says:

    I gave up diet soda 3 days ago. I seriously could drink almost 2 liters a day or almost 12 cans. It didn’t matter. I could drink all that soda and still drink water and juice, it didn’t matter. I felt I could never stop drinking.

    I stopped the addiction. Cold turkey. Its the worst. I’ve had the worst headache of my life. Its not a migraine. Its in a complelety different area in my head. I feel like I’m going to vomit, I get dizzy and feel sick.

    I hate this. I hate it. I don’t want to drink the soda any more knowing what is going on with me now. I”m stubborn so I won’t give in and drink any, but seriously, to anyone trying….. Its not easy. Give it time, it hurts.

  165. BillyBob Says:

    I’m not a fan of artificial sweeteners that so many here are using because it’s included in a product. The latest I heard about these is the body reacts to them like they are sugar, so you may as well have have the sugar.

    Caffeine helps pick up the adrenaline at times and is kinda like a mini workout in terms of flushing blood thru liver/kidneys etc. Can be helpful at times. It also tends to focus your attention on a specific task a little better but that is not always a good thing.

    Drinking MORE caffeine before the initial dose wears off (half life 4-6 hrs) will just build a tolerance to caffeine and require higher doses for the same effect. Caffeine is a pretty effective stimulant which also dumps stored sugar/fat (liver) into the blood stream. At high enough frequency, which is more than every 6 hours or so, this will effectively keep your blood sugar above optimum levels, which in turn will make it hard to lose weight.

    For myself, if I get into a project requiring too much effort and lean on coffee too much to get thru it, regardless of my other eating habits or exercise, I will always gain weight, albeit in the 10-20 lb range. I found a little caffeine in the morning and maybe later in the afternoon works best to get “whatever” benefits and still not have too much of a negative effect on blood sugar/health/weight gain. I also found, with proper eating and some exercise, it’s quite easy to break from the caffeine habit, without even realizing you’re doing it, if your caffeine level is quite low, as described above.

    Caffeine, for me, is really only a focusing agent which primarily pumps up the adrenals and delivers some sugar to the brain. It’s either caffeine or exercise, can’t always fit in the exercise.

  166. emmapetunia Says:

    Wow! I’m so glad I found this thread. I decided to give up my diet soda habit 2 days ago. Mainly b/c I kept hearing that it made you hungrier and hard to lose weight. I have never had a problem losing in the past but it suddenly became an issue. I also craved sugar like nobody’s business. Diet Dr Pepper is my drug of choice. I drink b/t 4-6 cans daily. Then I’d get a fountain Diet Coke while out and about. I don’t eat or sweeten anything else w/artificial sweeteners. Also not a coffee drinker so no other real caffeine sources.

    Anyway…this is my 2nd day off the stuff. Both mornings I thought I was going to die. I had the headache from he$$ and I got sweats, dizzy and nauseous getting out of bed each morning. I was crippled for about 2 hours both mornings until I choked down some toast and water. I don’t know how long this will last but this is so awful that it’s making me want to quit even more. They say don’t go cold turkey, but I think it’s helping realize how bad this stuff really is and it’s keeping me motivated. I’ll check back in to give an update on how it’s going. I hope everyone else does the same.

  167. Jack G Says:

    I am 24 years old and started drinking Diet Dr Pepper as a child. For at least fourteen years (that I can remember) I have been drinking Diet Dr Pepper and/or Diet Coke at the rate of 8-10 12oz cans per day.

    I have been diagnosed with fibromyalgia syndrome, and with precancerous growths on my thyroid which were surgically removed when I was 22, along with the majority of my thyroid gland.

    Nobody knows the cause of the fibromyalgia syndrome or the tumors in an otherwise healthy 24 year old man, but my gut feeling is that it has been the aspartame as it has built up over all these years.

    I am going into Day 3 without aspartame, and I am having the headaches, body aches, foggy mind, and all the common symptoms everybody else is mentioning. I will be so glad when this is OVER and I am no longer pouring poison down my throat every other hour.

    I am so glad to have found all these people with all these stories! Keep up the good work!

  168. Jason Says:

    I had no idea that aspartame was doing this to me. I read an emailed forward about aspartame poisoning 6 weeks ago (I usually trash the ones that sound so goofy), but something about this one roused my curiosity so I began to research the claims that the email was making and found a mountain of information about the product. I read every piece of informatiojn I could find, I watched every youtube video on the subject that they had, I bought Janet Star Hull’s book “Sweet Poison” of course while I was doing all of this I had decided from day one to give credence to the information and stop the use of any form of artificial sweetener with the exception of the occasional Sweet N Low (which is saccharin and proven not bad for you as once thought. I began to realize how I had been slowly but surely poisoning myself over the past 15 years by eating and drinking foods with this artificial sweetener in them. I have always been relatively big, but not obese by any means, I am probably somewhere in the neighborhood of 15 pounds overweight but I have for the majority of my adult life thought that I could eat and drink sugar free and keep my weight under control, but the price I paid was too much and it Didn’t really work anyway. When I was 18 years old I moved out of my Father’s home and began to do what I wanted to do, one of the things I wanted to do that he wouldnt allow was to diet, (anal I know, but thats how he was) I was never allowed diet drinks while growing up so I began to drink them. I didnt like them at first so I didnt drink very many and the kind of work I was doing wouldnt allow me to drink many during the course of the day anyway. This lasted well into my 25th year at which time I had graduated college, and was going through a nasty divorce when I found a desk job in my field of study (engineering) this opened the door for me to be able to down one diet soda after another with nothing to do but stare at a computer screen most of the day, I was also introduced to the drug ephedrine in the form of mini-thins, wow did this stuff take the weight off. Now here’s where the real story begins, I had had joint pain off and on for the 2 years prior to me getting divorced and thought nothing much of it. but I started to have them more frequently than I ever had before. Still, I thought nothing of it and equated it to a more sedentary lifestyle as being trapped behind a desk was making me kind of lazy. It so happens one day I was looking at blueprints and I had my first ever panic attack…WOW this was something I never want to experience again, I was 26 years old and thought I was having a stroke because I couldnt imagine why my head felt so funny and why I was having these weird symptoms for no reason at all. well after about $5000 worth of tests I was diagnosed with panic disorder and given a prescription for Zoloft, which I took for 3 weeks and quit because I could nto handle feeling like the walking dead every day of my life. I decided to get panic on my own. All the while I was still guzzling diet sodas and eating sugar free foods like mad. I began to have the episodes (panic) so frequently it drove me to drinking as this was the only time I was relaxed enough to not worry about having another panic attack. I stopped drinking long enough to get married after I had met what I thougth was my dream girl, to only have the anxiety/panic come back like a beast that had an insatiable thirst to see me suffer. needless to say that did not last long either as I my new spouse began to percieve me as a hypochondriac that would have to be taken care of a the age of 26, She split and never even looked back, to this day I still have no idea where she is. But back to the battle of panic, I let my life lead me where it would go and gradually I accepted the fact that I had panic disorder and would have for the rest of my life and something awesome happened, once I accpeted it, I began to have fewer symptoms until they had all but disappeared. My children were the thing that kept me going through all of this. After my second wife left me I began drinking again and quite heavily at that, or what I consider to be heavily, I was drinking a 12 pack every other day and every day on the weekend sometimes more on the weekends. I wasnt eating anything at all is the only reason I didnt gain weight I think. I noticed as I got older the joint pain began to be more frequent and nothing could help me but HOT baths and sleep. I also began to notice that I had stomach pains and diarhea all the time, I figured since Ihad had my gall bladder removed when I was 23 that this was the reason behind my stomach problems and payed no more attention to it than ever I had before. Then I started having excruciating headaches and pains and stiffness so bad that I did not want to go anywhere or do anything with my family much less by myself. In December 2005 I met my high school sweetheart again and we began dating and it didnt take long for us to realize that we were still in love and so we married in February of 2006. She began to help me try to battle this “disease” whatever it was I had that Doctor’s couldn’t quite put their finger on to the best of her ability and somedays she would simply tell me to go to the Doctor! To which I wold tell her “been there, done that, and I dont want another bill”. needless to say I was on my own again )battling the “sickness”) I am still happily married thank GOD. I was still battling panic episodes every now and then, skipped heartbeats (5 or more in 15 mintues sometimes) aches, pains, joint pain, stiffness, fatigue, mental fog, diarrhea, stomach aches, dry skin and a host of other symptoms when this one email arrived and I decided to stop the intake of aspartame, I figured I had spent untold thousands of dollars on Doctor’s, tests, OTC medicines, missed work time, missed time with family, 2 divorces, and well I figured why not, Now mind you I had been drinking diet drinks when I left my father’s home at the age of 18 I am now 35, so after 17 years of dieting I quit cold turkey. MAN did the aches come and the pains and the nausea and the fatigue worsened, the first month was so bad I though I was dumb for quitting because I really didnt feel any better if anything I felt worse. But now I am well out of my 6th week and entering my 7th and I feel a lot better than I have, I am gradually getting better though it hasnt been and isnt going to be an instant recovery. I have noticed a drop in fatigue and the joint pain is very minimal now, the panic/anxiety has gone! I have very few skipped heartbeats, NO dizziness and I sleep better. I do not get as hungry as I used to and I have lost 5 pounds. I also have no craving for alcohol at all. The only thing that still bothers me is visual photosensitivity to flourescent lighting. Hang in there, I am at week 7 and I feel Hella better than I have in the past 5 years.

  169. Jason Says:

    7 weeks in and I am feeling ten times better than I have in the past 5 years. Not as much joint pain or anxiety, not as much fatigue and I have lost around 5 pounds. Food satisfies me better than it ever did before. Hang in there everybody it does get better, the first month was terrible, but it gets better.

  170. Albert Lavigne Says:

    Several years ago my doctor recommended I switch from Diet Soda to regular because the diet makes you drink more as your body does not get the nutrients it is craving. Unfortunately I was diagnosed with Diabetes within 6 months of switching back to regular soda and switched back. Early this year I switched to a private practice doctor who is helping me work on my A1C control and he has recommended my stopping all soda consumption, which I finally did this last week. It took 3 days of horrendous headaches, but since then I have been very tired. Sleep has been no better or no worse than before I quit. Before I quit I was drinking between 2 & 4 litres of Diet Pepsi per day. I am still in my first week or so of recovery from caffeine, but we will see how it works out.

  171. Pamela Says:

    I have just finished day 1 of cold turkey from diet sodas, wish me luck.

    There are nutritional supplements that you can take to help your body get through the detox process more easily. Google “what to do if you have used aspartame” an article by Neurosurgeon Russell Blaylock, M.D.. I stumbled across a product called Thisilyn Daily Cleanse that seemed to be a convenient way to take some of these ingredients. There are probably many good healthy detox and liver support products out there.

    Good luck to everyone! This is an important step that we’re taking for our own health. I will report back on my progress.

  172. Joe Says:

    It’s 3am. Jittery, dizzy, nauseated, diarrhea. Can’t sleep. And I only cut intake by 1/2. Uggggggggg.

  173. Jennifer Says:

    I am so happy to have found this webpage, I was beginning to think I was going crazy! Let me start by saying that I’m an experienced ICU nurse, soon to be nurse practitioner whose faith in the medical field has recently diminished. Since I was 19 (now 34), I have drank nothing but diet sodas all day long. Water just never appealed to me. I’ve always had strange symptoms, and each time the doctor said “i don’t know.” In my 20’s I was diagnosed with panic disorder and horrible panic attacks. I always get sick frequently. Lately though is what’s concerning. For that past year, my throat/airway has been swelling spontaneously with no real cause. It’s accompanied by a low-grade fever, weakness, dizziness, and many trips to the ER. Sometimes my joints hurt for weeks. I’ve been to many doctors and they can’t figure it out, and my tests are all normal. This last incident put me in the hospital overnight. My friend from school suggested that I may be aspartame toxic and to try getting off the diet soda. Anyway, I tried drinking water and my swelling disappeared. Soon after I tried drinking a diet coke and my throat swelled again. I tried this three times and my boyfriend observed the same findings. So for several days I’ve been diet soda free and my lungs feel better than they have in years. The swelling went away. I can actually breathe through my nose again. Yes, I think I’m having some withdrawal symptoms like restlessness, stomach upset, and some crankiness. But for the past three days I have had more energy than I can ever remember! Good luck to everyone else!

  174. Veronica Says:

    After a 25+ year diet coke habit (5-6 cans a day), I am on my 5th day w/o aspartame. I have headaches, but the nausea seems to have stopped.

    For people who don’t like water who hope to find a substitute, try “spa water”! You just fill a big pitcher with water and add slices of a well scrubbed orange and/or lemon. It tastes better, and makes the drink feel nicer in your mouth than plain water.

    Slenda and sucralose are also not good — stay away.

    And for grocery store anxiety (so many things with aspartame) – try using unprocessed foods. You won’t find it in fruits, veggies, meats, or grains!

    If you like convenience foods – use those at Trader Joe’s or Whole foods — they do not carry products with artificial sweeteners.

    Good luck everyone!

  175. Mary Says:

    Oh my gosh!! I have spent hundreds over the last several days at doctors trying to explain my sudden dizziness, fatigue and tingling hands only to find that I am perfectly healthy (a good thing!)with no explanation for my symptoms. But guess what….I cut way back on my 5 – 6 Diet Coke a day habit a few weeks ago, and see post after post on this site with my exact symptoms!! Horrifying! As of right now…no more aspartame for me! Wish me luck!

  176. Heather Says:

    I am floored by the amount of people that are suffering the SAME things as I am. I thought I was alone, maybe even going crazy.

    I have been drinking Diet Pepsi since 2002. Just recently I went to the States, where I consumed diet pop as almost 100% of my fluid intake (stupid, I know.) I had to go to a clinic – I was soooo dizzy, seeing silver specks, nauseous, headachey for about 4 days, since I got off the plane. The Dr diagnosed me with Viral Vertigo and gave me Excedrin for the headache. About 4 days later, we were driving and I felt like I couldn’t get a dep breath, like someone was sitting on my chest. I got scared and we went to the ER. There I was told I was having a panic attack and hyperventalating. My vitals were all good, with the exception of my high blood pressure(150/105). I was prescribed ativan and meclimine. Its about 3 weeks past that now. After reading online about aspartame poisoning, which my Drs laughed at me for asking about, since they believe in “science”, not urban legends found online. My arms went numb and I went to the ER at home, in Canada, and the Dr told me I needed to go see a neurologist and get an MRI to be tested for MS. – I am on Day 5 or 6 of being Aspartame-free.

    I feel AWFUL. I am having racing heart and the symptoms of a panic attack, but I feel completely relaxed!!! I had the WORST headache of my life last night, and I am throwing up/nauseous. I am dizzy and sooooo tired.

    Please tell me this is the effects of aspartame withdrawal. I could use a little light at the end of the tunnel! klashg@uleth.ca


    I have been drinking diet soda for over 35 years…

    I had insomnia and my doctor prescribed a benzo to help me sleep, horrible idea… he kept me on these for 5 years, yes years, call me stupid but I did not know what a benzo was… during my sleep treatment he prescribed xanax ANOTHER BENZO… I went to get my annual checkup and told him the sleep help was no longer helping so he prescribed Ambien..

    I decided to give my system a break so stopped the original pill for a couple of weeks… well on day two I thought I was having a stroke, my whole left side went numb and had heart palps and horrible dizzyness… called my sister for help and she told me to go to the emergency room.. being stubborn I started to search the internet… and stumbled on the withdrawals of benzos… OH MY GOD.. I was in full withdrawal… not sure what to do I sat a cried for a full day..I read the symptoms of being on the stuff for long durations and realized what was wrong with me… I had developed agoriphobia, dizzyness, fear of everything, even afraid to visit family, cannot even list everything and had not live my life for 4 years but got stuck in my bedroom… I was able to grocery shop, etc… but that is about all…did not realize I was so bad as I dont work outside the house so the symptoms crept up on me slowly…

    I have lost years… well, now to the diet soda… to give me a pick me up from chronic insomnia I started my morning really pounding the diet pepsi, I had been using DP for YEARS, .. 2-4 liters a day… caffene free in the evenings, what trouble could that cause, this is now 6 months into my benzo withdrawal and still feeling pretty bad but at least off the drugs, may I add, I hate taking medications and try to rely on supplements… I should have known but my insomnia was so bad I just gave in… still feeling bad and watching my money go down the diet soda drain I thought maybe I should try to drink more water… then just cold turkey on the soda…

    WOW… it is only day 2 and my head is clear, a little stuffy as if I have a cold and hate to say a bit gasous… but just think the toxins are leaving my system… still not sleeping much but my fuzzy headedness is much better today… I have been thru hell and back and just crossing my fingers that this is my last adn final withdrawal… taking magnesium, calcium, B1, C, mild thistle… three months ago I gave up as much white flour, high fructose corn syrup and most bad fats… eat mainly fish and chicken and try to do many fruits and veggis that I can scarf down… bottom line.. I was so dehydrated from so much caffine I could not function… my withdrawal from seems backwards from most posts… I am feeling much better today only day 2… my head is much clearer and so far my moods are already changing…maybe the worst is to come but enjoying today… something I will do everyday of my life…

    this is probably very hard to read but had to get it off my chest to feel better… I am down 18 pounds from the diet change 3 months ago.. not really fat i now weigh 128 at 5’4″… oh, my tummy is actually flatter from the carbination bloat…

    Good luck all..



    I don’t even know where to begin. I have been drinking Diet Coke for the last five years as well as taking benzo’s (Ativan) for the last six years because of so called anxiety. Well that’s a story in itself for a another day.

    As FINGERS CROSSED mentioned the benzo’s turned me in to a hermit just like I assume they do to anyone who takes them. WHY in the world would doctors prescribe these personality/mood altering drugs to people with minor anxiety??? Absolutely unbelievable. The problem is they change your personality/behavior/outlook on life very slowly that you don’t even realize it. You completely forget the kind of person you used to be.

    Worse is old friends go off in different directions and so do family because they think you have changed. This does not happen over night. I have read that in Europe doctors do not prescribe benzos often because they understand the severe consequences of the drug. Wish that was the case here in the states. Not to get too far off topic but ever heard of Michael Jackson, Heath Ledger, Anna Nicole Smith? These are just a few of the famous examples that have appeared in the news the last few years. They were all drugged up and most likely had no control (as far as using sound judgement) over their actions. Sounds silly but I have been there and barely made it out alive.

    On to the diet coke topic. I stopped drinking Diet coke a few months after quitting the med’s. I felt the withdrawal from the med’s but they subsided and than I quit the diet coke (5-9 cans a day). The diet coke gave me terrible short term memory as well as a grumpy personality which was totally abnormal for me considering I had always been very friendly and energetic.

    Does diet coke cause memory loss? Hell yes it does. I couldn’t remember the titles or details of movies I had watched mere hours before. The first two months were terrible after quitting diet coke I had to read this thread 2-5 times a day to remind myself I wasn’t going crazy. It has been 8 1/2 months now and I still feel spacey. However, not nearly as bad and the memory loss issues are almost completely better with a few fuzzy moments now and than. It’s a process where I notice little improvements every couple weeks. It seems that some people have it bad where things improve within weeks and for some others they have it really bad where it takes months and months for others.

    There is a lot of info on the web about Aspartame poisoning you just got to take the time and look for it. I will post later on my progress. For all of you who have written above please come back and tell us about your progress and what you have learned. Good luck to you all!

  179. Betty Says:

    OK…there IS a solution for Aspartame withdrawal….buy some green or white tea, and drink it (instead) throughout the day…as many as 6 cups, if you need it…green/white tea has just enough naturally-occurring caffeine to help with withdrawal symptoms, plus naturally-occurring plant compounds that help to calm your system…do this for a few weeks, then wean yourself off of the tea, if desired…or keep drinking it, since it has health benefits…also of help: lots of regular water, and fresh fruits and veggies….Good luck! Aspartame kills…

  180. Jo Says:


    I’m 35 and started drinking diet coke when I was about 13, by the age of 15 I was suffering from manic depression, 5 years later I had horrendous insomnia. Next I got IBS and now I’m sufffering from fibromyalgia.

    The articles and information that I have read have led me to believe that aspartame poisioning is the reason behind all of my illnesses.

    This is day 2 on my aspartame withdrawal. I am still taking small amounts of caffiene in green tea. So far I feel really drained and weak, I also feel angry and aggressive. I have a constant thirst that will not go away. I’m continually drinking water but it makes no difference. I also feel like my skin is crawling and I’m getting tingling sensations all over my body.

    I’m disgusted. It is only now that we are seeing the effects of aspartame. It takes time for the damage to be done. Hopefully now people will see how dangerous it is and eventually get this hideous chemical out of our food chain. The company owners that makes this crap should be forced to consume stacks of it every day for years and see how they like the ill effects.

    Rant, rant -it just makes me so mad. The truth will come out though, the truth is coming out….

  181. Cheyenne Says:

    This is Day 4 of my diet drink withdrawl and it’s the most clear headed I’ve been since I started. This posting has been a God-send since I’ve been so inspired to keep going. I journal as much as I can about what I’m going through – the aches, the pain, the sweating, freezing cold, headaches, stomach problems and so on. I want to get to a 60 mark and look back on this with some pride that I’ve made it loud and clear that I’m totally worth the effort of quitting something that is slowly been poisoning me for the last 20 years. Good luck to those of you on the same journey and thank you to those who continued to come back and keep us all posted on how it’s going. It makes me think there’s a light at the end of this tunnel of withdrawl!! Because right now this freakin tunnel SUCKS!

  182. Rich Says:

    I didn’t quite drinking pop because I had some sort of illness or condition. I just knew that drinking pop couldn’t be good at me, and my family had nagged me about it enough, that on my own I would do something.

    I usually consumed about 40 oz of Diet Mountain Dew per day. The headaches were bad the first two days, but I took two tylenol twice a day and that took about half the pain away. You know how you don’t feel like yourself when you are recovering from the flu or some illness? It was like that, noy very enjoyable but I could function.

    After the second day it eased off considerably. I might have taken a couple single doses of tylenol. Two trying days and two or three light days and it was over. About a week into it, one day my joints ached, it was uncomfortable to bend over and walk. I took a sodium naproxen to relieve myself of that. Thankfully it was gone the next day – very weird.

    My withdrawal experience was not bad, and I would recommend it to anyone. There is some suffering, but if you determine to do it (and pop some pills to help with the pain) you can get through it. I have zero desire for any pop now, haven’t had any in two months.

    So what was I going to substitute for it? I think I was a bit dehydrated following the withdrawal. However bad drinking 40oz of pop was, it was easily half of my fluid intake, sadly, and I had cut that out. I bought some instant lemonade and sipped some of that for awhile, but now I am drinking more water. As long as it’s ice cold, I enjoy having it. I can’t say I’ve had any weight loss, there is still the matter of calorie intake and exercise there. But it’s weird walking around the store and realizing how prevalent pop is, and knowing I can skip that aisle from now on.

    I got pop free at work, so I didn’t always have to pay for it. But 40 oz is easily $1/day if you went to the trouble of puring it from bottles, $2/day if you got it from a soda fountain. Anyone that had to pay full price could easily be saving $500/yr or more.

    I wonder if I’ll ever be on a long drive and need a boost? Would I have a can of pop then? I think the answer is yes. I will try to avoid doing so, but I think I could easily have one can of pop and then be done with it. But I’ll put that decision off as long as possible…

  183. rebecca Says:

    Hi i am a 29 y/o female who quit diet energy drinks and soda around 10 days ago because i was sure it was making me sick. I have been diagnosed with an overactive thyroid, (but very boderline). Since quitting i have had depression, anxiety, but now im getting swelling in my neck, tingles and what feels like a numb arm. Has anyone else had similar experiences? im worried im going to have a stroke or heart attack when i feel like this.

  184. Nate Says:

    Holy Crap… you reiterated my sentiments about caffeine. I drink Diet MD as well and have been concerned that it is a serious addiction. I’ll have to keep following your blog because I’m facing the same dilemma. I’m a 28 year old college student living in Southern Utah.

  185. aberylb Says:

    Well, I am not happy that others are experiencing the same thing, but I am completely off aspartame for approximately 1 week now and glad to not be alone. I am experiencing some fatigue and a few leg pains, but occasionally, I just feel “icky”. I am craving fruit drinks/fruit like crazy. I have also experienced a little fluid retention. Otherwise, I am fortunate enough to be able to exercise like crazy – maybe I am sweating a lot of the toxins out – hang in there everybody.

  186. mickey Says:

    I quit drinking diet Pepsi now for two weeks and I am bloated or retaining water. Is this because caffeine is a diuretic and I am no longer consuming it? Has any one else experienced this? I hope this is happening because my body is trying to adjust without the pop. I continue to drink lots of water hoping to get rid of this bloating and fluid retention.

  187. Jim Says:

    I am also a caffine addict. I would drink several Mountain Dew’s a day. I did stop drinking soda’s cold turkey, but to keep from getting a headache and because I don’t drink coffee, I started taking one caffine pill (Vivran) in the morning and one in the afternoon to get my caffine fix. I only drink water now and I don’t have any headaches. I know that the caffine is bad for me, but at least I’m only drinking water now. Baby steps!!!!!

  188. terry (Aust) Says:

    I have only been off diet drinks a week i never liked diet coke it tasted off i stayed on leaded coke untill coke zero came out and liked it and pepsi max all state no sugar with trying to loose waight i have felt of untill hour ago feeling light headed and my wife felt the same last night before going to bed i have done some reserch the code for aspartame is 951 under sweetner good luck to all.

  189. Zachary Says:

    I’ve been off coke zero for about a week and a half now and i just want to say the 1st week of withdrawal was the scariest I’ve ever felt in my life.

    I was exercising and then felt lightheaded like i was gonna faint, was always tired body and eyes and was experiencing “dreamlike” vision which gave me anxiety and depression. that was when i found out about aspartame poisoning when i typed in my symptoms(this was when i got off it) and was diagnosed with dehydration by my doctor, i was exercising 30 mins. a day plus i live in the philippines and it’s summer and all i drank was coke zero, i went through 2 litres or more a day(for almost a year). LOL, okay i felt stupid enough.

    Loads of water and a bit of gatorade helped for a day or two. but the symptoms stormed back with an additional flu-like feeling and a thunderous migraine. i felt i was going insane. then i read don’t quit aspartame and caffeine at the same time cold turkey or the withdrawal will be worse. i had coffee twice a day and YES! the flu-like symptom and headaches went away. i’m on my 9th day now and since yesterday i only had 1 anxiety attack and the lightheadedness was minimized.

    I am slowly getting better day by day. plus a big thank you to all of you and this site, which helped my depression knowing i’m not alone. plus i just got my lab results and everything was normal. i gotta say this week made me a hypochondriac. hoping to feel 100% again.. thanks

  190. Melissa Says:

    I’m a 31-year-old woman and I’ve been drinking diet soda regularly since college, probably. I definitely kicked it up to an addiction in my 20s when I started working desk jobs and made the vending machine my best friend. At times I would give up caffeine, thinking it was the root of some problems, but continued drinking caffeine-free diet coke or diet sprite. Over the past few years I’ve seen an increase in some symptoms that may or may not be due to the aspartame, but I suspect they are related. It was a lot of joint and muscle aches and increased irritability (which I noticed was worse after a Diet Coke, so I’m pretty confident about that one.) My last Diet Coke was 10 days ago and I think (I hope) I’m through the withdrawal symptoms. For the first few days, I had headaches, but ibuprofen helped. Then on the 6th day, I started to feel horribly nauseated, like I had food poisoning or the stomach flu. I ended up in bed for a day and was sensitive to light and sounds. Turning on the TV was intolerable. I drank a ton of water and I felt better the next day, except for a little lingering nausea.

    The one really weird thing I’ve noticed is that I feel like my sense of taste has changed. I have a funky taste in my mouth and coffee, iced tea and beer taste more bitter than they used to. The good news is that I’m not craving sweets like I did. I used to have a true addicts’ NEED for sweets several times a day, in addition to the need to feed the Diet Coke cravings. I’m hoping this will be a good first step in cleaning up my diet all around.

  191. Sunny Says:

    I am a 34 year old woman. I started drinking diet coke when I was about 17-18 years old, so about half my life. I drink b/t 4-5 a day and am extremely addicted! I have always been an athlete, stay active, take my vitamins and etc. I started experiencing tingling in my extremities and other strange symptoms. I am a borderline hypochondriac so I was off to the computer googling my symptoms…MS sounded similiar along with a few other illnesses. I then proceeded to go to the health food store where the man told me there about the dangers of aspartame. Not wanting to believe him I went home and googled aspartame. I knew it wasn’t all that great for you but the things I read shocked me. It can cause tingling in the extremities even blindness!! It also said that a lot of people are misdiagnosed with MS, because the effects of Aspartme mimic the symptoms of MS even Lupus. I have not had a diet Coke in 5 days. It has been awful…I still drink coffee/caffeine. I am just cutting out Aspartame. I am trying to keep my mind strong, I’m totally nervous/anxious. I tried drinking Sprite, but I just don’t really like the taste like diet coke. I am going to do this for me, for my health..but I feel it is going to be a long road! It just sucks that something you enjoy can be so bad for you! I mean how is this stuff even FDA regulated?

  192. Pat Says:

    I too am kicking the diet coke habit. I am a diabetic and can not get my sugar under control. Can not lose weight, and tired all the time.Two days ago I woke up with a very dry mouth and felt terrible, stuffy nose. I finally figured out what my problem is. It has to be the aspartame. This is day 2 and I felt better. Was able to do a lot of house cleaning today. With all the overweight people drinking diet coke and other products and no one is losing weight.I feel like this is the beginning of change and will see it through. Good luck all

  193. Roxanne Says:

    A note about caffeine free diet Pepsi. Since 1973 I have drank diet Pepsi then some years ago I changed to Diet caffeine free Pepsi, about 3 cans a day. Last year I noticed a symptom that I have when I have ingested caffeine. I couldn’t figure it out and I complained to Pepsi but they said it was impossible that there is caffeine in my caffeine free Pepsi. I continued to drink it but the symptoms got worse. Sore breasts. Recently I was suffering so much that I resorted to drinking caffeine free diet Coke and I can’t stand coke, yuk. But the pain in my breast has subsided to nil after a few weeks of not drinking Pepsi. I contacted Pepsi again with the same results. Be careful if you drink caffeine free Pepsi. My distributor is in AZ, perhaps it is just limited to here in this state. I am very concerned about it, for me it means pain, who knows what it might mean to someone else??

  194. Lee Says:

    Interesting reading through the stories- mine is similar.

    I drank Tab in the 70s, then switched to DC in ’86 or ’87 and consumed massive quantities daily (never less than a 6-pk; usually more like 9 or 10 a day). However many it was, it was enough that I always had one in hand or nearby, had many empties in my back car seat despite frequent removal, and kept one on the bedside stand for last drink at night and first in the morning. I’ve been aware for several years that it was an addiction, but always gave in due to the headaches.

    In March, I noticed a few symptoms of poor health- I had always had thick, lustrous hair, but it was thinning at the front sides noticably. Even the men in my family don’t lose their hair, so this was disturbing. I also started getting real severe short term memory problems- like I couldn’t remember even the simplest thing even if trying (ex- get milk and toothpaste at store; would stand clueless in the aisle literally wracking my brain to recall the list, even though I had been singing ‘milk-toothpaste’ all the way to the store…) Also- no concentration. I began to be unable to focus. I would have to read the same sentence over and over to get its meaning- and not heady text, but, say, the morning paper. There was also the incredibly dry skin ( visible cracking, even during summer–usually a winter thing), marked premature aging, and breaking hair. For the dry skin, I massaged oil in at night (olive or peanut), but by the next evening, it would be exactly the same- I was just parched, dehydrated inside out.

    About a month ago, the brain fog got pretty serious, and I started feeling a little scared of things, like I couldn’t trust my own instinct. (I wondered if I was becoming agoraphobic or something)- a feeling of ‘unreality’. Also, I started waking up in the middle of the night with a feeling of utter panic, like I was standing on the last edge of life and was about to fall over into some sort of eternal abyss; real psych stuff that was very disconcerting.

    Then I got what I thought was the flu, and felt relieved to finally have an explanation for how bad I had been feeling. Except when the fever broke, I still felt sick and weird. I considered early dementia (I am 46) because I couldn’t easily track analytically anymore. It was like I was unable to think.

    Last week new things happened. As I was looking in the mirror, I noticed that the hair loss had advanced significantly, now at the center part down to the ears, and had advanced backward on the scalp nearly two inches! (I do not find hair anywhere- it’s not falling out inordinately, apparently, just not growing back when it does fall out?). I also started getting pretty dizzy; mostly on waking up, but also throughout the day. Also, I never had a weight problem, but suddenly I had a real stomach on me- I actually had to go to the store to get a new pair of “fat shorts” to get me through the season. It all seemed really sudden (though it wasn’t really; there have been indications for years I brushed off as not that important). But what was sudden was this critical mass of new and scary symptoms.

    I found my way to the aspartame sites and stopped drinking DC IMMEDIATELY! That was just under a week ago. I have been looking at the case of DC I still have and the few stray cans still in the fridge with amazement that it is still here, since usually I’m trekking to the store constantly for replacements.

    Withdrawal has been excruciating- to the point that I really wondered if I was being poisoned by someone, maybe with arsenic- it was that bad. Immediately I got the headache, but it wasn’t too awful- just unpleasant. Nausea kicked in for a few days. What was seriously painful were my leg joints, particularly the knees, then ankles, then hips. It felt like I was becoming crippled. The pain was helped with massage, ibu, and pain patches, and subsided after 5 or so days to today, where it just feels like shin splints. When the ibu wore off during the night the pain would wake me up and it was like all I could do was moan and rub until the new dose kicked in. (I experienced this pain about 5 years ago and spent hundreds of $$ trying to get expert medical dx/treatment.) Happily, the bloated gut went way down almost right away. Also, today I almost think I may regain some of my former brain power, though I still feel like I’ve lost many many IQ points this last year. I can just see that I’m really far less sharp and it is very similar to what is seen as people age (but, usually much older than mid 40s). Memory still not back.

    I will note for the record that I’ve had some moments of over the top anger and bits of inappropriate aggression, and I still have this to some degree (severe mood swings); also I’ve spent at least 30 years with depression and anxiety disorder- though interestingly, diet soda consumption predated dx. At any rate, the symptoms described in this post seem related to the DC, and, I am hoping, the memory and hair loss repair.

    I’ll also note for those who are having a hard time with withdrawals, know you are not alone. I quit smoking some time ago cold turkey and this is WAY worse (and I LOVED smoking for many many years). At least with smoking, it’s just stress, irritability and cravings. With this, it’s all those things plus unbelievable pain and frightening confusion. At least as it has been in my case. But to look at a can of DC now brings only contempt for the CC company and I shall no longer poison myself to line their pockets.

    Good luck everyone- I’m rooting for us all!

  195. Craig Says:

    Been ingesting aspartame for 27 years,this stuff rein my life,lost jobs from mood swings,spent so much on vitamins and other things trying to figure this out! In & out of hospitals, 10,000 dollars on gallbladder removal which did nothing for the pain i was in.Well been aspartame-free now for about 10 days,feel like i have alot of energy,no more pain,stomach really quiet now,starting to feel a real peace now,mood swings are better.But still have cold feet at times,wierd bitter taste in mouth,still have wierd skin condition on my face,nausea at times.WHO SAYS THIS STUFF IS NOT TOXIC!

            Your out of your mine!
  196. Bud Says:

    This Stuff killed my mother in 1999!.I remember her always on a diet and complaining of her hands going numb or tingling,she had big mood swings,her hair was falling out,she had a bottle of beano for the severe gas pains.She tried everything to no avail,this stuff got enbedded in her skin and her immune system was attacking it self trying to remove it!. They call it autoimmune disorder,lupus Ect. Doctors didn’t know what it was?.Well her immune system attack her until her body shut down.Her immune system was not faulty it detected poisen and wanted to remove it.So for what it’s worth, THIS IS A VERY REAL DANGER TO YOUR BODY!

  197. Sukie Says:

    I have been drinking DP (diet pepsi) for probably 45 yrs. Never left the house w/o a bottle. In cooler months, I kept several 6packs in the trunk so I’d always have one close at hand. I drank one after another. It was my sole source of fluids. My mom has recently been diagnosed with dementia and is in assisted living now. She lived on artificial foods and sweeteners most of her life in an effort to control her weight. Started doing research about dementia and somehow got crossed over to aspartame poisoning. I sat glued to my computer for hours, reading all I could. I’ve been off DP (and all forms of aspartame) for about two weeks now. Was also drinking one to two pitchers of Crystal Light at night to offset my DP addiction. I also have hypothyroidism (related to the DP addiction?) Anyway, the first week wasn’t bad at all. The past week has been hell. The sweats, bloat, gas, upset stomach, and then the dizzy spells (so bad I thought I’d fall on my face a couple of times), sleeplessness,incredible thirst, nausea so bad that I’ve jumped out of bed at night thinking I wouldn’t make it to the bathroom. The other night, I was sure I’d come down with some kind of horrible flu and the headaches are incredible. I was just laying in my bed (3:30 in the afternoon) and wondering if all these things are withdrawal from aspartame. Turned on the computer and found this site and am so relieved to know this is normal. Think about it, I’ve been poisoning myself for more years than anyone else who’s written on this site. Now I also know why my hands and fingers have been tingling for years. I am suffering wicked headaches and fatigue and as others have written, this makes it so undeniable that aspartame is poison to the body. I’m done with aspartame. I must say that I have noticed my appetite has decreased and don’t crave carbs nor sweets anymore. No weight loss yet, but it will come. I just want to feel good again.

  198. Barb Says:

    Wish I had seen this site 6 weeks ago. Been drinking Diet soda for decades. Recently drinking 44 ounces in the morning and 44 ounces in the evening. I quit cold turkey and a few days later thought I was getting the flu. Very tired, nauseous, sweating, pain in the joints that travel from one place to another, but the worst were the panic attacks and chest pain and heart palpitations. Went to the ER for overnight observation – could not find anything. Went to the cardiologist – found nothing. But my BP up. I then put two and two together and realized I was not feeding my body any aspartame. Been a little over six weeks now – most symptoms gone except vague anxiety occasionally and still have irregular heart beats. I have read it can take 60 days or longer for the symptoms to subside. I cannot believe how hard it has been and how scary. THIS SUBSTANCE NEEDS TO BE TAKEN OFF THE MARKET.

  199. Eva Says:

    Hi everyone, I think finding this website back in May really changed my life. I quit cold turkey my bad bad habit of diet pepsi (4-5 litres/a day). I no longer suffer from debilitating post-exercise migraines. Coming home from work today, an idea came over me. I am a photo student and would really be interested in doing a photo project on us, the ones who suffered because of our diet soda addictions and decided to quit to restore our health. Maybe turn the portraits into a book with personal stories. I felt very strongly about my diet pepsis but now I feel very strongly about not having my diet pepsis and knowing there are many more people like that who can understand both the initial addiction and then the turning back on it and dealing with the withdrawals is so much more empowering. I am in NJ but definitely willing to travel, at least a bit. Please, send me an email if you would like to participate in this project. I can definitely send links to my other photo work.

    Thank you so much and congratulations on your new life post diet-soda.


  200. Doug Says:

    Well, I stumbled onto the aspartame poisoning topic while web searching for cheap cases of DP shipped to my door. Yes, a daily addict of 2 20 oz. bottles every day, and the first liquid intake of the day…. o cold, sweet nectar of the gods! 🙂 But alas, I see it is killing me. What really jumped out at me was the possible link to tissue and joint paint which seemed to be worsening lately for no apparent reason. It’s a no brainer to me, …quit. Today is the first day aspartame free for me. Dreading the coming days, from what I’ve read here from others, but glad I found it. Thanks for sharing your info!!!!

  201. Norma Pogue Says:

    Been drinking 2-3 12-oz cans of diet drink for over 20 years. Decided last Monday to give it up, just for good health purposes. By Thursday I thought I was going to have a heart attack. Hadn’t slept in 2 nights because of headaches. Had dizziness, racing heart, blood pressure shot up, aches and pains everywhere. Spent lunch hours sleeping in my car. Finally went to dr. on Thurs. Blood pressure was 147/100. Never once thought it had anything to do with diet soda withdrawal. On Friday went to lunch and ordered a diet Dr. Pepper. Halfway through lunch I began to feel better. By the time I got back to work I felt amazing! That’s when I realized what was wrong with me. And it wasn’t caffeine withdrawal because I was still getting some caffeine. It was aspartame and/or whatever else they put in diet drinks. I’ve got to get off this stuff. Don’t know how I can get through withdrawal. It’s horrible.

  202. izzydoesit Says:

    It’s too bad the replies on this thread are becoming sparser, I’d think more people would come forward to talk about Aspartame poisoning as our environment becomes increasingly toxic. BTW, there’s a post by one troll obviously planted as an Aspartame shill. Do your own research. Weigh all the evidence out there, both pro and con. If you believe, like the vast majority of people in this country, that the government would not lie to you or that your doctor is an infallible source of medical information, you’ve been drinking the Kool-Aid too long.

    I drank diet soda and chewed sugarless gum for 25 years. I chewed 60-75 pieces of gum a day–sometimes more. About two months ago I began to have alarming symptoms I’d never had before: swelling of my feet and ankles (and I’m very thin, not diabetic, very low blood pressure) pins and needles in my legs and feet, stabbing pains in my legs, horrific charlie horses, a feeling like my legs were filled with needles, terrible headaches, a stabbing pain behind my left eye, subconjuntival hemorrhages in that same eye four times in four months (which my opthamologist said was nothing), hair loss, tinnitus, hearing loss, a painful receding of my finger nail beds, brain fog and a feeling of unreality, heart palpitations, depression, suicidal ideation, and frightening memory loss. My GP said he didn’t know what was wrong; the cardiologist pronounced my heart healthy; the neurologist doesn’t know either but is sending me for 2 MRIs next week (of my brain and neck, the other of my spine) and another neuro test he’ll do in his office. He tested my blood for Lupus (neg), Lyme disease (neg) and also for Sjogrens which came back slightly positive but he wants to check that again in six weeks.

    I’ve known about Aspartame for a long time and quit a while back but started again; after my neuro visit something told me to research it. I watched “Sweet Misery” online and read articles for about ten hours. I quit cold turkey 8 days ago. The foot swelling is not as bad, but the headaches are awful, I feel flu-ish and have a slight fever, the pains in my legs, feet, arms and hands are excruciating. When the symptoms got worse AFTER I quit the Aspartame, I wondered if maybe it was not the cause after all, but after reading how sick people were, and how long the symptoms persisted, perhaps it IS withdrawl that will take time to abate.

    The other thing is that I had Hodgkins lymphoma six years ago and there is some clinical evidence that Aspartame is linked to lymphoma and leukemia. When I mentioned this to my oncologist this week at my yearly check-up he said he didn’t know about that and wasn’t really interested in finding out more. My neurologist said he didn’t know much about it either but said there was no clinical studies published that proved Aspartame caused these symptoms, although he did admit that he thought the Aspartame could exacerbate an existing condition.

    It’s common knowledge that Searle pushed Aspartame through FDA approval with the help of some highly dishonest and crooked people who had financial and political motivation to do so (Donald Rumsfeld was the prime instigator). The studies Searle did were seriously flawed and there was clinical evidence they willfully did not report or knowingly misreported to the FDA. They have also stonewalled researchers who wanted to do further studies about the effects of Aspartame on the human body because it is felt by many people with good reason that previous studies were far from rigorous and conclusive. The class action suit by Aspartame victims was dropped several years back.

    Aspartame, is a billion dollar business and is now put into things like chewable vitamins with no labeling on the package. This is nothing short of criminal.

    If your health has been affected by this toxic poison it is incumbent on each of us to get the message out so that more people know the dangers of this dangerously harmful and very legal food additive. I only hope that I have not done irreparable damage to my body.

  203. Aaron Says:

    Recently quit my 4-5 diet drink habit approximately 3 weeks ago. I must say, this website was a relief to me when I read of others having the same symptoms I have been having while bearing the withdraw process. Aspartame is the DEVIL!!!! I have had the worst 2 weeks ever since quitting. Pains in neck, shoulders, arms, and extreme fatigue. Really thought I might have cancer. SERIOUSLY…it has been that bad. I want everyone out there to know that this stuff is pure poison, and you don’t realize how toxic it is to your body until you detox from it. Good luck to all and god bless everyone who has posted words of comfort on this site.

  204. Cathy Says:

    I found this forum this morning b/c of the horrible foot cramps, joint pain and swelling and leg pain and weakness I have been experiencing. I have been experimenting with aspertame for the past couple of months. I am thoroughly CONVINCED I have aspertame poisoning. One bottle of aspertame-laced diet tea the other day and I am fighting off the swelling in my feet and ankles again. I got on here this morning thinking the leg pain and weakness HAD to be something else. Now I’m thinking it is the aspertame. Get this stuff out of my body!!! Thank you all for the encouragement. I will keep on pushing through…

  205. Stephanie Says:

    I have always been a sweet tea junkie & decided a few months ago to go off the sweet tea (sweetened with sugar) & drink only water. I didn’t like plain water & discovered peach tea flavor packets to add to my water bottles. I had been chugging this for close to 3 months & going through a box of 10 packets every day & 1/2. Suddenly a few wks ago, I had a horrible earache & vertigo set in. I thought it was just an ear infection due to sinus problems. Dr. Said my ear looked fine. She gave me vertigo meds & said it should work itself out w/i a few days. The vertigo got worse, along w/blurred vision off & on, extreme mood swings w/unbearable anger, numbness in my legs & abdomen. I started googling & found aspartame poisoning symptoms. I checked my peach tea packets & sure enough, there it was! So, I’ve been 4 days off the aspartame now (it was the only thing different I’d been doing). The 1st couple days seemed okay. Today was day 4 & absolutely horrible! The dizziness has come back & will last a few seconds but the episodes are extremely severe in nature now. I’ve fallen twice today! I have aches/pains (aside from the bruising from the falls) & extremely restless legs. There’s also this horrible itching that is akin to narcotic pain pill itching (history of kidney stones & the narc pain pills always make me itch). Is this all normal? The dizziness is also making me nauseous. I’m on day 4 – my question is, how long before these symptoms abate? Thank you for any help!

  206. Adrienne Says:

    I have been off of aspartame for 21 days..with a diet coke habit for 20 years. easy 4-5 cans per day. The withdrawl symptoms were horrendous. Headaches, random body pains that travel througout my body, stiff neck, dull aches, severe tiredness..my goodness I thought I had cancer, lupus, rheumatiod athritis, every auto immune disease out there. It was scary. I went to the doctor with all of my concerns, not attributing this to asparatame and caffeine, she thought I was a hypercondriac. Anyway, I still have some of the mild pains but I have mental clarity that I have never felt before, better sleep and I am more alert. Never will I concume this product again. Also, try making small changes to you diet too. Like I gave up fast food and packaged food..so I think my body was and is in complete shock…

  207. Dr. Mitch Says:

    Hello Everyone, I have read thru all your posts. Please let me refer you to dorway.com for the low-down on Aspartame. Also, you need to find the movie called: ” Sweet Misery, A Poisoned World”. It was done by a young lady who got off aspartame poisoning. The movie tells how aspartame was discovered, researched, marketed, etc. You can thank Donald Rumsfield for getting it approved. It was approved politically, not because it was safe. It’s all in the movie. By the way, ASPARTAME is also marketed as Splenda, Crystal Lite, Sucrolose, Equal, Neotame, and a few other names. It causes 92 symptoms ranging from multiple sclerosis to death. Check it out. Good luck to everyone on your Aspartame free life.

  208. Annoushka Says:

    I am a 43 year old woman who has had borderline high blood pressure for the past few years but no other major problems. I have had for the last 20 years a myriad of problems and health issues that concern me, but drs could find nothing and were just ready to prescribe me antidepressants. For the most part, I do not consume aspartame or Splenda products daily, but I have consumed them throughout the week (most weeks) in various forms. That, and I have been through periods where I have consumed a lot of aspartame. The FDA approved them, right? They can’t be all that bad….

    Since I found out that I’ve had high-ish blood pressure, I thought I needed to hydrate more and since the water in my community doesn’t taste the best (even after I filter it) I bought some Crystal Lite. It tastes good! Well, I started drinking it–a lot–and everything got worse. The sleeplessness, anxiety, depression, were things I thought I could ‘handle’ since I’ve had these complaints on and off the last 20 years of my life. Really. Just work through that stuff, lest I be told I am a complainer. The joint pain, though…unbearable. First, my knee. It started clicking and the pain I would have made me afraid to walk across the room. I HAVE to walk for my job, so the first month this stuff was going on, I was afraid for my future. It is still clicking a bit, but the pain is now gone. I hope the clicking resolves itself. Then, pain so terrible in my toe that I just about screamed every time the top of my toe touched my shoe. I had that for three days, and then it completely disappeared. Shoulders are awfully painful and between that pain and my back pain, I don’t even feel like I can hold my body up straight. Those problems continue. The real kicker was my thumb joint spontaneously started being painful, with a searing pain. Pain that makes me wince, and cry. I love to knit, and this particular joint pain was making it impossible. Knitting is kind of meditative to me and if I just sit on the couch and watch tv (while wincing every time I use my thumb on the remote or trying to put my hand around my cup of Crystal Lite) I kind of feel useless, and ill at ease. I wondered why my body was deteriorating so quickly. I mean, I’ve never had any sort of joint pain or arthritis problems before. After I had it for two weeks and was mentally making plans to see a doctor over holiday break (I live in a very rural area where my dr is a few flights away…) I made a list of the things I’d been doing differently in the past few months and using Stevia in the Raw (Stevia & dextrose), drinking instant coffee, and Crystal Lite (60+ ounces a day) /Diet Coke (maybe one or two a week) consumption were the things most notable. Then, I remembered when I was in college and had a cafeteria card. I drank a lot of Diet Coke there, and that is when I started going to drs asking for help with my health concerns. I cut down on the Diet Coke after a few semesters because I thought it was the caffeine that was causing problems, but after this current round of problems, I think it has nothing to do with caffeine. So…fast forward to today…one week off of any aspartame product. I am sleeping better, my mood seems more even, and my leg swelling seems reduced. Still have some joint issues, but my joints seem less painful than they were. I do hope this continues. I’m tired of being sick…and tired. Aspartame is a poison to me. I hope that I didn’t ruin my joints by consuming it. I plan to never knowingly consume it again. I hope this forum helps people make their own decisions about their health and healing instead of looking to drs as the ultimate authority. They aren’t. They are just people, too. And if they haven’t had any aspartame-related issues or if they just read the ‘scientific evidence’ (funded by Monsanto), then they probably don’t/won’t understand the scope of this problem for some.

Leave a Reply


Powered by WordPress
(c) 2004-2017 Starling Fitness / Michael and Laura Moncur