An ingredient in diet soda could be linked to cancer, but don’t panic
Jun 30, 2023, 8:30 AM | Updated: Jul 2, 2023, 10:55 pm
(Photo by George Frey/Getty Images)
SALT LAKE CITY — One of the primary ingredients in your favorite diet soda could be linked to cancer.
The World Health Organization plans to list aspartame — an artificial sweetener commonly used in diet soda, sugar-free gum and reduced-sugar condiments — as a possible carcinogen. But Registered Dietician Nutritionist with the Huntsman Cancer Center Emily Preib says you shouldn’t panic.
“A lot of the research has been inconclusive,” she said. “But now that we have more information and it now is being recognized, I don’t think there is any need to panic.”
In the research published by Reuters, the study clarifies that “since 1981, JEFCA [the joint WHO and Food and Agriculture Organization’s Expert Committee on Food Additives] has said aspartame is safe to consume within accepted daily limits.” The research shows adults would have to drink between 12 and 36 cans of diet soda – depending on the amount of aspartame in the beverage – every day to be at risk. That’s 432 ounces of the stuff.
“Most of my recommendations when it comes to nutrition is always going to come down to moderation,” Preib said. “It’s kind of the best thing we can do.”
Many companies have already moved away from using large amounts of aspartame. So, unless you’re drinking those 36 cans a day, you’ll most likely be alright.
“It’s just more information that we have and that’s what’s important,” Preib assured. “So again, just kind of taking that and moving forward.”
Clayre Scott contributed to this article.
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