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Aspartame connections to fibromyalgia continue to be questioned

Lana Bandoim's picture

Aspartame is an artificial sweetener that is approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), but it has been linked to fibromyalgia. A study from France found a connection between the disorder and aspartame consumption, yet this artificial sweetener continues to be investigated. It is still a popular ingredient in many products and can also be found in NutraSweet or Equal.


Similar to other artificial sweeteners, aspartame has a bad reputation, and people continue to question its safety as a food additive. It has been suggested that it increases the risk of cancer, birth defects and other diseases. However, the Food and Drug Administration, American Cancer Society and National Cancer Institute claim aspartame is safe and point to studies that have shown it does not raise the risk of health problems. Nevertheless, there are conflicting reports and research surrounding artificial sweeteners.

A study from researchers at the Department of Rheumatology at Dijon University Hospital and the Faculty of Medicine at Burgundy University in France found aspartame-induced fibromyalgia was causing chronic pain in patients. However, their fibromyalgia and pain disappeared completely once they removed the artificial sweetener from their diets. Researchers suggest that more studies are needed on this important topic, but they also recommend that doctors ask patients if they are consuming aspartame. They believe that testing to see if removing the sweetener eliminates pain is worth trying without more studies.

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Some people who have fibromyalgia have found relief by eliminating artificial sweeteners such as aspartame. They claim it got rid of their pain, headaches, stiffness, fatigue and anxiety. However, each person seems to tolerate the sweeteners differently, and others did not notice any change by adding or removing them. If you are concerned about your diet and fibromyalgia, you may want to consult a doctor and a nutritionist.

Read more about fibromyalgia:
Memantine drug shows promise for fibromyalgia
Fibromyalgia study focuses on brain stimulation to fight pain

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