T Nation

training / nutrition


I was investigating a few of the artificial sweeteners used in low-carb protein powders after hearing how bad aspartame supposedly is. I looked at two brands I’ve used over the past month. Optimum 100% whey, and EAS simply whey are sweetened with acesulfame-potassium and aspartame, respectively. Has anyone heard about one being any safer than the other? Also, for curiosity what is the Biotest stuff flavored with?

Many companies have switched to using acesulfame-K as a sweetener instead of aspartame because of the controvery regarding the safety of aspartame. I haven’t heard anything negative on acesulfame-K. Biotest uses splenda as a sweetener which tastes just like sugar and unless I’m mistaken it is made up of a chlorinated sugar molecule. If I were to take a guess I’d say that splenda is probably quite a bit more expensive to use then acesulfame-K.

Aspartame is NOT BAD. Anyone telling you otherwise is an idiot! Most of the T-mag staff have acknowledged this in past articles.

Biotest uses sucralose. Good stuff.

I got this from the “center for science in the public interest” website (cspinet.org): acesulfame-K is an artificial sweetener, manufactured by Hoechst (a giant German chemical company) for which safety tests were conducted in the 1970s, and were of mediocre quality. Key rat tests were confounded by disease in the animal colonies; a mouse study was several months too brief and did not expose animals during gestation. Two rat studies suggest that acesulfame-K might cause cancer. In addition, large doses of acetoacetamide, a metabolite, have been shown to affect the thyroid in rats, rabbits, and dogs. Supposing aspartame is bad (just suppose OK), it certainly doesn’t look like acesulfame-K is much of an alternative to it.

Just another tid-bit of info: a can of diet pepsi contains ~36mg of aspartame, while 1 serving of EAS simply whey contains 100mg. So in my breakfast shake with 2 servings of whey- I’d be getting a six-pack’s worth of aspartame. Therefore if (and only IF) aspartame is bad for you, wouldn’t we as iron-pushers be in one of the highest risk demographics for any toxic effects.

Iron pushers probably still wouldn’t be in a higher demographic for negative effects because intense exercise increases metabolism and blood flow thus clearing things from the system.