Friday, June 29, 2012

What is high fructose corn syrup doing to your health?

One of my readers brought the topic of high fructose corn syrup to my attention, she had a really good point saying that many people don’t even know about it. So here is my rant about high fructose corn syrup…

What is it?
High fructose corn syrup (HFCS) is a sweetener used in sodas, fruit drinks, and other processed foods. It’s similar to regular table sugar chemically, but it is made differently. Many sources claim that the body doesn’t process it the same way it would normal table sugar, leading to many health issues.

During digestion normal sugar would be broken down into glucose and used for energy immediately, or stored for later use. However HFCS enters metabolism as fructose, which gets things rolling for fatty acid synthesis, leading to fat storage.  So pretty much HFCS is stored as fat easier and faster than other types of sugar.

There is a lot of research going on currently about the health effect of HFCS, many things point to weight gain, high triglyceride and LDL (bad cholesterol) levels, leading to heart disease. It is also known to cause a resistance to the hormone leptin which controls hunger, in turn increasing a person’s appetite. Many other problems such as diabetes, metabolic syndrome, and cavities have also been linked to HFCS.

No matter the sugar source, large amounts will do a job on your health; but since HFCS is hidden in so many places, its hard to keep track of how much you are actually consuming.

Here are some foods that contain High fructose corn syrup that you may not have even realized.
  • ·      Sodas
  • ·      Juice
  • ·      Ketchup (and many other condiments)
  • ·      Ice cream
  • ·      Salad dressings
  • ·      Yogurt
  • ·      Pasta sauce
  • ·      Cereals (even some of the “healthy” ones)
  • ·      100 calorie packs (tricky tricky)
  • ·      Fast foods
  • ·      Breads
  • ·      Canned veggies

Scary huh? My words of wisdom are: check your labels; know what you are putting into your body!

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