WHO Labels Aspartame as ‘Possible’ Cancer Risk

WHO Labels Aspartame as 'Possible' Cancer Risk

WHO Classifies Aspartame as “Possibly Carcinogenic,” Daily Intake Level Unchanged. The World Health Organization (WHO) has announced that it now considers aspartame, an artificial sweetener commonly found in soft drinks, as “possibly carcinogenic to humans.”

This classification comes after the WHO’s International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) conducted its first-ever evaluation of aspartame’s carcinogenicity.

WHO Labels Aspartame as 'Possible' Cancer Risk

The evaluation placed aspartame in category Group 2B, based on limited evidence, particularly regarding hepatocellular carcinoma, a type of liver cancer. The IARC’s evaluation also indicated limited-strength evidence of cancer in experimental animals.

The Joint Expert Committee on Food Additives (JECFA), formed by WHO and the Food and Agriculture Organization, concluded that the acceptable daily intake of aspartame remains unchanged.

Aspartame is widely used in various food and beverage products, including diet drinks, chewing gum, ice cream, yoghurt, breakfast cereals, toothpaste, and more. The WHO’s previous guidelines already advised against using artificial sweeteners for weight loss.

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