“…The dangers of white sugar have been known for a long time. But now the evidence seems clear that “high-fructose corn syrup” is an even more dangerous consequence for our love of sweets. Dietary experts are singling out this fake syrup as one reason for the startling rise in obesity in America and related increase in diabetes.
Worse Than Sugar
By Mary Glendia
A Critical Care Nurse and Nutrition Enthusiast
As posted at No Weight Gain Cookbooks
Experts are finding that “high-fructose corn syrup” (HFCS) is making us fat. Scientists at nutrition research centers are saying that it’s a huge problem.
Exactly what is “high-fructose corn syrup”? Well, it’s not the same thing at all as the natural, healthy fructose in honey and fruit. “High-fructose corn syrup” is a highly refined, artificial product. It is created through an intricate process that transforms cornstarch into a thick, clear liquid. White sugar and “high-fructose corn syrup” are not the same. Industry advocates for corn growers say that they are the same. But nutritional science studies say that there is a big difference between the two. They say that “high-fructose corn syrup” is worse than sugar.
This manufactured fructose is sweeter than sugar in an unhealthy way, and is digested differently in a bad way. Research has shown that “high-fructose corn syrup” goes directly to the liver, releasing enzymes that instruct the body to then store fat! This may elevate triglyceride (fat in blood) levels and elevate cholesterol levels. This fake fructose may slow fat burning and cause weight gain. Other research indicates that it does not stimulate insulin production, which usually creates a sense of being full. Therefore, people may eat more than they should. Indications also are that the important chromium levels are lowered by this sweetener which may then contribute to type 2 diabetes. Obesity is a contributor too.
Many older Americans are overweight. As we age, our taste buds don’t work as efficiently, prompting us to eat more of everything that tastes sweet. “High-fructose corn syrup” is in almost everything.
The dangers of white sugar have been known for a long time. But now the evidence seems clear that “high-fructose corn syrup” is an even more dangerous consequence for our love of sweets. Dietary experts are singling out this fake syrup as one reason for the startling rise in obesity in America and related increase in diabetes.
“High-fructose corn syrup” is not the corn syrup you buy in a bottle at the supermarket to use for baking. It’s an artificial additive that’s cheaper and easier for manufacturers of sodas and fruit juices to use. If you read labels, you’ll find this additive in such products as pizzas, sweetened yogurt, baby food, ketchup, cookies, beer and alarmingly in most manufactured foods. If the artificial additive “high-fructose corn syrup” is added to an otherwise healthy food, is it still healthy? If you add a speck of poison to vitamins, are they still good for you? After all, just a speck of poison probably won’t hurt you on the spot, but accumulative amounts most probably will. 30 years of these accumulative affects of “high-fructose corn syrup” is evident in the obesity and health problems we have today.
Manufacturers of food products began substituting “high-fructose corn syrup” for white sugar in the 1970’s. A red flag went up in my mind when I read these facts. I remember distinctly in the 70’s when this happened. I was in the habit of drinking one Coca Cola every day since the 1960’s. I never put on weight with only one coke per day. I clearly remember when this fake corn syrup replaced the sugar in sodas. The cola’s didn’t taste as good, and I began to put on weight. I remember that I knew it was the Cokes, but couldn’t figure out why. I never made the connection between my weight gain and the change from sugar to “high-fructose corn syrup”.
I believe that there’s something meaningful in the fact that the increase of the use of “high-fructose corn syrup” in the 1990’s, coincides with the obesity epidemic. This coincidence cannot easily be explained away. Annual consumption of this artificial sweetener today is more than 60 pounds per person. It was only about 1/2 pound per person in 1970. The U.S. Agriculture Department reports that Americans consume more “high-fructose corn syrup” than white sugar.
“High-fructose corn syrup” is highly valued by food manufacturers. It’s easy to transport in tanker trucks. It isn’t susceptible to freezer burn, as is sugar. It has a long shelf life and keeps foods from becoming dry. It gives bread and baked products a wonderful color. It’s also cheaper than white sugar, partly because of generous federal subsidies and trade policies that encourage farmers to grow more corn. Fast food chains add it to their products because it is cheaper. It’s in the sauces, in the condiments, in the breadings, in the buns and in the drinks. It is the commercially preferred artificial sweetener.
What’s worse than sugar? Now you know.