What is Aspartame?

Curious about low-calorie sweeteners?  You’re not alone.  Conflicting information about low-calorie sweeteners seems to be reaching new heights, so we’ve searched high and low for the facts. Here’s the low-down on aspartame.

What sets aspartame apart from other low-calorie sweeteners is its parts.  Aspartame is made of two amino acids, aspartic acid and phenylalanine. When consumed, aspartame is broken down into these two amino acids and a small amount of methanol, all of which are also found naturally in fruits, vegetables, meat and eggs

Did you know that aspartame was discovered by accident? It’s true. In 1965, James M. Schlatter, a chemist working on an anti-ulcer drug, licked his finger to get a better grip on a piece of paper. The sweetness he tasted became known as aspartame.

Aspartame is the primary sweetener found in brand names like Equal®, Nutrasweet® and Sugar Twin® and has been FDA-approved since 1981.

Before you depart, check out our latest aspartame infographic below.

Still looking for more? Take our Aspartame Fact Sheet as a parting gift.