Corn Sugar? Fructose Syrup?

Who doesn’t like a little sweetness in their lives?

We even crave it sometimes.

But , how we get our sweetness from the foods we eat can make all the difference between health and illness.

We have become a society addicted to sugar. The average American eats about 22 teaspoons of sugar PER DAY! That sounds outrageous, right? But consider how we use it. We put a couple of teaspoons in our morning tea or coffee. We sprinkle a little cinnamon sugar over our buttered bagel. Or, we eat a danish or a muffin for breakfast. We add a little to our hot oatmeal to sweeten it just a bit.

Perhaps for lunch, we order an iced tea or a soda. We add ketchup to our hamburger and fries. We have dessert. We go home and drink some fruit juice. Later in the evening, we have some more sweetened coffee or tea with our dessert. It’s easy to do- sugar lurks in almost everything we eat- baked desserts, bread, in condiments like ketchup and Worcestershire’s sauce, even in jarred tomato sauces we put on our spaghetti.

What are the issues with sugar?

Well, first of all, much of the sugar on the market today is made from GMO beets, and , by now, I hope you understand the issues with these genetically engineered foods.

Cane sugar, which is not GMO (yet) is one of those crops that is sprayed with glyphosate before harvesting.

Today, however , I want to focus on high fructose corn syrup.

High fructose corn syrup still exists in many prepared foods and the Corn Refiner’s Association  has lobbied to change the name of high fructose corn syrup (which has rightfully gotten a bad rap) to “corn syrup” or “fructose syrup” . Don’t be fooled- it’s the same thing!  You can find more on that here.

Dr. Mark Hyman describes high fructose corn syrup here :

The sugars are extracted through a chemical enzymatic process resulting in a chemically and biologically novel compound called HFCS. Some basic biochemistry will help you understand this. Regular cane sugar (sucrose) is made of two-sugar molecules bound tightly together– glucose and fructose in equal amounts.The enzymes in your digestive tract must break down the sucrose into glucose and fructose, which are then absorbed into the body. HFCS also consists of glucose and fructose, not in a 50-50 ratio, but a 55-45 fructose to glucose ratio in an unbound form. Fructose is sweeter than glucose. And HFCS is cheaper than sugar because of the government farm bill corn subsidies. Products with HFCS are sweeter and cheaper than products made with cane sugar. “

“Since there is there is no chemical bond between them, no digestion is required so they are more rapidly absorbed into your blood stream. Fructose goes right to the liver and triggers lipogenesis (the production of fats like triglycerides and cholesterol) this is why it is the major cause of liver damage in this country and causes a condition called “fatty liver” which affects 70 million people.The rapidly absorbed glucose triggers big spikes in insulin–our body’s major fat storage hormone. Both these features of HFCS lead to increased metabolic disturbances that drive increases in appetite, weight gain, diabetes, heart disease, cancer, dementia, and more.”

Additionally, high fructose corn syrup has been tested to contain mercury and has been proven to be a contributor in leaky gut, fatty liver disease and increased cholesterol levels.

If you want to make one change toward creating a healthier life, be wary of where high fructose corn syrup hides in your foods. Become empowered to remove it from your diet by eating less processed foods, avoiding sugary drinks like soda, avoiding nutrient devoid breakfast cereals.


Dr . Mark Hyman

Washington Post 

Dr. Josh Axe




Speak Your Mind