Aspartame is a non-calorie artificial sweetener comprised of methanol, phenylalanine and aspartic acid.
It was discovered by accident in 1965 when James Schlatter, a chemist of G.D. Searle Company, was testing an anti-ulcer drug.
Now it is used in diet sodas and thousands of other products worldwide. Since it appeared on the US market in the 1980s, aspartame and the possible health risks from the substance have been a topic of much debate. Aspartame accounts for over 75 percent of the adverse reactions to food additives reported to the FDA. Many of these reactions are very serious, including seizures and death.