I can’t wait to bring you this month’s Bulletin – it’s all about the power of the informed consumer, which makes for all-around good news!
First, Diet Pepsi is ditching aspartame as a sugar substitute, even though the FDA has deemed aspartame “safe” for decades. The trend toward awareness in food continues, as evidenced by the public’s insistence on GMO-free foods and appropriate labeling.
And the federal government is taking a step in the right direction by lowering fluoride level guidelines in tap water.
Let’s get to the good news!
1. No More Aspartame In Diet Pepsi: Manufacturer Listens To Consumers And Ignores FDA
Since 1983, when the first aspartame-containing carbonated beverages were made available for public consumption, the chemical has been used in a variety of diet soft drinks.
“PepsiCo says it’s dropping aspartame from Diet Pepsi in response to customer feedback and replacing it with sucralose, another artificial sweetener commonly known as Splenda.
The decision to swap sweeteners comes as Americans keep turning away from popular diet sodas. Competitor Coca-Cola said this week that sales volume for Diet Coke, which also uses aspartame, fell 5 percent in North America in the first three months of the year.
Executives at Coke and Pepsi blame the declines on perceptions that aspartame isn’t safe. That’s even though the Food and Drug Administration says aspartame, best known by the brand names Equal and NutraSweet, is ‘one of the most exhaustively studied substances in the human food supply, with more than 100 studies supporting its safety.’”1
What the FDA doesn’t mention is that the “100 studies supporting [aspartame’s] safety” were submitted to the FDA by the G.D. Searle Company, where aspartame was first “discovered” in 1965 by a chemist at the very same company.
Pepsi Is Not The Only One Who’s Listening To Consumers
Recently, the popular restaurant chain Panera Bread has heard its customers’ concerns over artificial ingredients in their products. In fact, Panera has published a list of all 150 artificial ingredients – including preservatives with scary names like Tert-Butyl-Hydroquinone – that they will be removing from their foods by 2016.2
Other restaurant chains are getting the message, too – McDonald’s says it will no longer use chickens that have been given certain antibiotics; Chipotle Mexican Grill has removed all genetically-modified ingredients;3 and Dunkin Donuts is going to stop using titanium dioxide (a common sunscreen additive) in its powdered doughnuts.2
Unfortunately, the sweetener that will replace aspartame in Diet Pepsi is acesulfame potassium, known by the brand name Splenda. This is not a “healthy” option either, but Pepsi’s decision to ditch aspartame does at least show that the company is paying attention to consumers’ concerns. Additionally, it shows that the public is concerned about (and aware of) what’s in their food and beverages, and food businesses are listening.
Regardless Of the Sweetener, Colas Are Bad For Your Bones
No matter what sweetener is used, there is no way to make colas healthy for your bones. “Clear” carbonated beverages contain either artificial sweetener or a vast amount of bone-damaging sugar, and the dark-colored colas are full of both sweetener and phosphoric acid. Phosphoric acid literally dissolves bone – in fact, cola will dissolve the calcium-rich shell from an egg.
This is not, by far, the first time a harmful chemical substance has been approved for human consumption. Many readers are undoubtedly familiar with Bisphenol A, or BPA, the federally-regulated, FDA-approved substance that was once used in the manufacture of plastic baby bottles but has since been banned due to its toxic effects.
Savers Know Not To Trust Government Agency “Approvals”
The Save Our Bones community has grown exponentially in recent years. This clearly shows that more and more people are becoming aware of what’s really going on in the food and drug industries. Savers have learned that government agencies are not infallible, and that FDA approvals can’t be trusted.
As chronic diseases continue to plague the world, people are becoming more and more savvy about what they put into their bodies, and the role of nutrition in the prevention and treatment of disease. Hence the next segment of the bulletin, which involves GMOs…
2. US Department Of Agriculture To Implement New GMO-Free Label
The USDA has developed the first “official” government label certifying that foods are GMO-free.
“The Agriculture Department has developed the first government certification and labeling for foods that are free of genetically modified ingredients.
USDA’s move comes as some consumer groups push for mandatory labeling of genetically modified organisms, or GMOs.
Certification would be voluntary — and companies would have to pay for it. If approved, the foods would be able to carry a “USDA Process Verified” label along with a claim that they are free of GMOs. …
Genetically modified seeds are engineered in laboratories to have certain traits, like resistance to herbicides. The majority of the country's corn and soybean crop is now genetically modified, with much of that going to animal feed. GMO corn and soybeans are also made into popular processed food ingredients like high-fructose corn syrup and soybean oil.
The FDA says GMOs on the market now are safe. Consumer advocates pushing for the labeling say shoppers still have a right to know what is in their food, arguing that not enough is known about the effects of the technology.”4
Once again, it’s the voice of the consumer that is bringing about change! This is encouraging news indeed – informed consumers can make a difference. More and more people are aware of the potential health problems – including damage to your bones – that can be caused by GMO foods, and they are (rightly) demanding the full disclosure of which foods have been genetically modified.
And here’s another factor that most likely also plays a significant role in this surprising move: competition. Private organizations that issue GMO-free labels to companies that voluntarily submit their products, such as the Non-GMO Project, are thriving in recent years.
Isn’t it shameful that the FDA declares GMOs “safe”? But it’s not surprising, considering the FDA’s record of announcing a substance’s safety only to retract that later in the face of overwhelming evidence to the contrary.
Here’s some more encouraging news that government agencies are getting the picture about informed consumers.
3. U.S. Lowers Guidelines For Fluoride Levels In Tap Water
If you have The Missing Link, the free report on water that is included with the Osteoporosis Reversal Program, then you are well aware of how and why fluoride is added to tap water, as well as the dangers of fluoride ingestion. While the right thing to do would be to completely eliminate fluoridation, this is a (small) step in the right direction.
“The government is lowering the recommended amount of fluoride added to drinking water for the first time in more than 50 years. …
Too much fluoride has become a common cause of white splotches on teeth in children. One study found about two out of five adolescents had tooth streaking or spottiness. …
Since 1962, the government has been advising water systems to add fluoride to a level of 0.7 parts per million for warmer climates, where people drink more water, to 1.2 parts per million in cooler areas. The new standard is 0.7 everywhere. …
The change announced Monday finalizes a proposal first made four years ago. The government spent years sorting through and responding to 19,000 public comments.”5
Amazing – 19,000 public comments! Obviously, the majority of those comments were from individuals who wanted to see the fluoride levels come down, because they were aware of the dangers of ingesting fluoride. This is an excellent illustration of how knowledge is power – especially power to enact positive change.
Fluoride Is Toxic To Your Bones And Overall Health
Although the above article only mentions dental fluorosis, there are many other detrimental health effects of fluoride ingestion, including harm to your bones. Plus fluoride can cause liver and kidney damage as well as skeletal fluorosis, with symptoms similar to arthritis. And because fluoride interferes with the metabolism of iodine, its ingestion is strongly implicated in the development of hypothyroidism.
This topic is explored in depth in The Missing Link, the report on water that I referred to earlier. Fluoride-free water is paramount to cleansing your system and reversing osteoporosis, yet it’s just about never mentioned by doctors in connection with bone health.
Luckily, Savers know better!
Till next time,
1 Choi, Candace. “Diet Pepsi dropping aspartame on customer concerns.” My Way. April 24, 2015. Web. http://apnews.myway.com/article/20150424/us–diet_pepsi-new_sweetener-8c1b78529f.html
2 Rooney, Ben. “Panera eliminates additives, joins healthy food trend.” Money.CNN.com. May 5, 2015. Web. http://money.cnn.com/2015/05/05/news/panera-eliminates-artificial-additives/
3 Zimmer, Carole. “Chipolte Says Adios To GMOs, As Food Industry Strips Away Ingredients.” NPR.org. The Salt. April 27, 2015. Web. http://www.npr.org/sections/thesalt/2015/04/27/402632212/chipotle-says-adios-to-gmos-as-food-industry-strips-away-ingredients
4 Jalonick, Mary Clare. “USDA develops first government label for GMO-free products.” AP News. My Way. May 14, 2015. Web. http://apnews.myway.com/article/20150514/us–genetically_modified_foods-labeling-fa04376f7e.html
5 “US lowers fluoride levels in drinking water for first time in over 50 years.” The Guardian. April 27, 2015. Web. http://www.theguardian.com/environment/2015/apr/27/fluoride-levels-us-drinking-water-lowered-splotchy-teeth