Font Size


Phenylalanine is one of the eight essential amino acids necessary for the basic functioning of human cells that leads to normal growth and development. It is found in most foods, especially those high in protein, such as meat, cheese, and milk.

Food labeling laws require products that contain phenylalanine to be labeled with a warning for people who have the inherited disorder phenylketonuria (PKU), because these people cannot safely consume phenylalanine. For example, aspartame, a common sweetener, is a nonprotein source of phenylalanine. Aspartame is used in many diet soda pops and sugar-free foods.

ByHealthwise Staff
Primary Medical ReviewerJohn Pope, MD - Pediatrics
Specialist Medical ReviewerChuck Norlin, MD - Pediatrics

Current as ofNovember 14, 2014

WebMD Medical Reference from Healthwise

Last Updated: November 14, 2014
This information is not intended to replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on this information.