High Fructose Corn Syrup (HFCS) is a common sweetener used in snacks, candies, sodas and fruit flavored drinks.
Given that it is a cheap and readily-available alternative, high fructose corn syrup has taken over our food industry at an alarming rate, and with the rise of HFCS, we see an even more alarming increase of type 2 diabetes, obesity and heart conditions. Food companies trick us into thinking HFCS is harmless due to its molecular similarity to regular sugar. They even trick us into thinking it is healthy because it is derived from corn…how can it be unhealthy?
However, our bodies process it in a much more negative way by adding an unnatural amount of fructose in our bodies, which overloads the liver, causing this to be immediately stored as fat, rather than be processed into energy.
In a study conducted by Princeton University:
Rats with access to high-fructose corn syrup gained significantly more weight than those with access to table sugar, even when their overall caloric intake was the same.
In addition to causing significant weight gain in lab animals, long-term consumption of high-fructose corn syrup also led to abnormal increases in body fat, especially in the abdomen, and a rise in circulating blood fats called triglycerides.
Both groups of rats in the study were fed the same number of calories. The only difference was that one group of rats was fed regular table sugar, while the other group was fed HFCS.
Additionally, with a rise in morbid obesity, we also see a rise in other issues such as fatty liver disease, heart diseases, diabetes and much more.
If that is not worrisome enough, HFCS has been found to have an unhealthy amount of fructose, which if consistently consumed in high amounts, can “punch holes” in the intestinal lining, triggering inflammation. This inflammation is the root cause of diabetes, heart disease, obesity, dementia, cancers and accelerated ageing. Furthermore, HFCS has been scientifically found to be absorbed more rapidly than regular sugars, and this prevents the stimulation of leptin or insulin production. The lack of this stimulation prevents the body from getting the “I am full” signal, and therefore causes you to consume a lot more food and calories than you are supposed to.
Lastly, the presence of high fructose corn syrup is an indication that the food is of poor quality, lacks nutrients and is overall processed with empty calories and artificial flavorings. If you see HFCS on your nutrition label, you can almost always guarantee that the food is not fresh, whole, or full of real vitamins, minerals, fiber or antioxidants. Stay away from HFCS if you want to maintain or improve your overall health.
Think your healthy food is safe from high fructose corn syrup? Think again! From low calorie snacks to your favorite condiments, even to cough syrups, high fructose corn syrup can be a bit challenging to avoid.
- Here is a list of the most common “healthy foods” HFCS is found in:
- Here is a list of the common foods containing HFCS
Call our office at 662-280-8222 or email [email protected] if you have questions.
Ulric Duncan MD, Diplomate of Obesity Medicine
9140 Highway 51 North
Southaven MS 38671
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Written by Zeenat Mirza