The dangers of high fructose corn syrup

The dangers of high fructose corn syrup

  • There have been many ads and debates in the media about high fructose corn syrup (HFCS). While the food industry claims that corn syrup does not cause harm, the statistics tell another story. The average American has increased their HFCS consumption from zero to about 60 pounds per person per year.
  • During this increase of consumption, obesity rates have tripled and the diabetes rates have increased by more than seven times. Let’s take a look at some reasons why HFCS can be detrimental to our health.
  • 1. Sugar in any form causes obesity and disease when consumed in pharmacologic doses.
  • Sugar and HFCS can both cause disease when consumed in doses of 140 pounds per person per year. A new MRI technique shows that cancer cells literally feed on sugar.
  • 2. HFCS is processed different than sugar in the body.
  • HFCS is far from a “naturally occurring substance.” It is extracted from corn stalks in a method that Archer Daniels Midland and Carghill would not allow investigative journalist Michael Pollan to witness for his book The Omnivore’s Dilemma. Like cane sugar, HFCS is also made from glucose and fructose, but not in an equal ratio like sugar. There is also no chemical bond in HFCS between glucose and fructose like there is in sugar.
  • This lack of bond causes HFCS to be absorbed more quickly into the bloodstream. It then goes straight to the liver and triggers lipogenesis, which is the production of fats in the liver.
  • This 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,” Dr. Mark Hyman explains.
  • Research done by the Children’s Hospital Oakland Research Institute also shows that HFCS needs more energy to be absorbed by the gut, and soaks up two phosphorus molecules from ATP, which is our body’s energy source.
  • This drains the ATP in our gut, compromising the integrity of our intestinal lining. Large amounts of HFCS have shown to literally punch holes in the intestines causing toxins and partially digested foods to enter the bloodstream.
  • Once these substances enter the bloodstream, it triggers inflammation, which is linked to obesity, heart disease, cancer, and more.
  • 3. Contains contaminants like mercury that are not regulated by the FDA.
  • An FDA researcher asked corn producers to ship some HFCS to be tested for contaminants. Her requests were confused until she claimed to be part of a new soft drink company. She was shipped a container of HFCS and it was found to contain toxic levels of mercury because of chlor-alkali products that were used to make it.
  • 4. Medical and nutrition experts DO NOT support the use of HFCS.
  • Barry M. Popkin, Ph.D., Professor, Department of Nutrition, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill has written about the dangers of HFCS. In review published by the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, he explains how HFCS may contribute to obesity. Popkin states, “The digestion, absorption, and metabolism of fructose differ from those of glucose. Hepatic metabolism of fructose favors de novo lipogenesis (production of fat in the liver). In addition, unlike glucose, fructose does not stimulate insulin secretion or enhance leptin production. Because insulin and leptin act as key afferent signals in the regulation of food intake and body weight (to control appetite), this suggests that dietary fructose may contribute to increased energy intake and weight gain. Furthermore, calorically sweetened beverages may enhance caloric over-consumption.”
  • 5. HFCS often means low quality food or “food-like products.”
  • If you see high fructose corn syrup on the label, you can be sure that it is not real, whole, fresh, high quality food. Real food does not need additives like HFCS or artificial sweeteners to taste good. If food contains HFCS, then it most likely does not have nutrients, vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants that are key to good health.
  • For the dangers of splenda.
  • Are you addicted to sugar? 
  • New MRI technique confirms that cancer feeds on sugar.
  • 1. Hyman, Mark, MD. “5 Reasons High Fructose Corn Syrup Will Kill You.Dr Mark Hyman. Dr Mark Hyman, 04 Mar. 2013. Web. 30 Sept. 2013.
  • 2. “Consuming Fructose-sweetened, Not Glucose-sweetened, Beverages Increases Visceral Adiposity and Lipids and Decreases Insulin Sensitivity in Overweight/obese Humans.” J Clin Invest. J Clin Invest., 2009. Web. 30 Sept. 2013.
  • 3. Dufault, Renee, Blaise LeBlanc, Roseanne Schnoll, Charles Cornett, Laura Schweitzer, David Wallinga, Jane Hightower, Lyn Patrick, and Walter J. Lukiw. “Mercury from Chlor-alkali Plants: Measured Concentrations in Food Product Sugar.” National Center for Biotechnology Information. U.S. National Library of Medicine, 26 Jan. 2009. Web. 30 Sept. 2013.



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