The risk of artificial sweeteners is still very real. Aspartame is used as a substitute sweetener in thousands of products. Most diet sodas, processed foods and candies contain this ‘alternative’ to sugar.
If you aren’t careful, you’ll easily run into it somewhere in your food.
Aspartame is marketed not by its real name, but through products like Equal and NutraSweet. This is because aspartame itself has a bad reputation as a dangerous excitotoxin. An excitotoxin is named for its ability to ‘excite’ the cells of the body into overproducing a particular chemical, thus burning them out prematurely. Aspartame in particular has been found to affect brain cells, by mimicking the response to sweetness and producing an artificial form of it.