The World Health Organization’s announcement, at the end of last week, that the artificial sweetener “Spartame” was considered a “possible carcinogen”, sparked widespread controversy and confusion. Two committees affiliated with the organization, which is based in Geneva, warned one of them that this sweetener, which has been in common use for more than 40 years, can cause cancer; While the other committee ruled that it remains free from any danger if it is consumed within the permitted quantity. Spartame is used in dozens of beverages and foods. Francisco Branca, director of the Department of Nutrition at the World Health Organization, said at a press conference in Geneva (Friday), that if one had to choose a drink to quench his thirst, and he had to choose either a drink that was sweetened with Spartame or regular sugar, then he should choose the third option: to be satisfied. Drinking water! The International Agency for Research on Cancer, which is based in Lyon, France, said (Friday) that spartame is a “probable carcinogen”. This classification means that there is limited evidence that this substance can cause cancer. This classification has nothing to do with determining the amount a person can consume to stay safe from cancer. It is a task undertaken by a joint committee of the World Health Organization and the Food and Agriculture Organization. This joint committee said (Friday) that it does not have convincing evidence that Spartame causes harm if it is consumed at a rate of 40 milligrams per kilogram per day. It is the average set by the Joint Committee itself in 1981. The countries of the world followed it in adopting that quantity for the consumption of their people. Scientists said the evidence that Spartame causes cancer is weak. According to the World Health Organization, a person whose weight ranges between 60 and 70 kilograms is considered to have exceeded the permissible limit if he consumes every day from 9 to 14 cans of various types of soda drinks.
Saudi Arabia reassures consumers: There is no fear of Spartame
Yesterday (Saturday), the Saudi Food and Drug Authority considered that the International Agency for Research on Cancer’s report classifying the artificial sweetener “Spartame” as a possible carcinogen in (Group 2B) is a possibility, not conclusive evidence. She explained that the aforementioned classification means the lack of sufficient scientific evidence and evidence to cause cancer in humans and experimental animals.
The authority stated that the joint expert committee between the Food and Agriculture Organization and the World Health Organization on food additives confirmed that “the data that were evaluated do not indicate that there is sufficient reason to adjust the specific daily consumption rate, which ranges from zero to 40 milligrams per kilogram of weight.” body”, stressing that it is safe to use within these limits, and exceeding these limits is equivalent to consuming 9 to 14 cans of soft drinks containing 200 or 300 milligrams of “Spartame” per day for an adult weighing 70 kilograms, assuming that there is no intake another from other food sources.
The Saudi authority stated that it had conducted many scientific assessments on the safety of the substance during the past years, which included reviewing all scientific assessments from international organizations and international bodies concerned with food safety control, and sharing information and research with those authorities, which proved that there are no concerns related to “Spartame”. . She pointed out that “Spartame” has been used for more than 40 years, in more than 6,000 products in various countries of the world, and there is no evidence or scientific evidence to prove the danger of its consumption according to the recommended limits not to be exceeded. The Saudi Food and Drug Authority stressed its keenness on the safety of all products subject to its supervision, continuous re-evaluation, and global monitoring of food product safety through the authority’s rapid alert center.
A contraceptive pill that does not require a prescription!
Last weekend, the US Food and Drug Administration approved the first over-the-counter birth control pill. The independent experts who advise the agency recommended approval of the Opill tablet last May. Thus, the United States will join the small number of countries that allow access to birth control pills without a prescription, most notably South Korea and Greece. Specialists considered Opill’s approval a comfortable way out after the US Supreme Court’s decision to revoke the constitutional right to abortion. Perego, the company behind the Opill pill, announced that it would be available to the public in early 2024. But anti-abortion groups were quick to denounce the regulatory approval of this new pill. The head of an anti-abortion group, Kristan Hawkins, said it was too dangerous to allow young women to take this drug without consulting a medical professional. In May, the agency’s advisors recommended that Opill’s benefits outweigh any potential damage. The new pill works by containing the hormone progestin, which is a synthetic version of the hormone progesterone. The pill suppresses ovulation, causing changes in the pelvis and vagina that reduce the odds of pregnancy. Scientists believe that any contraceptive drug must have secondary complications, mood swings, and so on. And major pharmaceutical companies rushed to announce their desire to apply to the US Food and Drug Administration to license drugs they devised to prevent pregnancy, but they can only be obtained by prescription. Including the German company Bayer. The New York Times reported yesterday that Opill prevents pregnancy in about 93 percent of cases. The manufacturer says the drug appeared in prescription form more than 50 years ago, so its safety record is well established. And associations concerned with reproductive health in the United States say that more than half of the number of pregnancies in America are “unintended.”