This article details the biological reasons HFCS (High Fructose Corn Syrup) causes health problems when substituted for table sugar (sucrose) in manufactured foods, as is in most foods these days:
- Sucrose must be broken down by the body into glucose and fructose in order to be used by the body. HFCS by contrast, has a much higher proportion of fructose. As a result of HFCS use fructose consumption has increased by 26% in the last 30 years.
- Glucose and fructose are both used for energy and fat production in the liver. The glucose breakdown pathway is turned off then there is an accumulation of energy and fat, but there is no such feedback mechanism in the case of fructose.
- Fructose, unlike glucose, does not effectively shut down the hunger signal, so an individual will not feel sated as easily. This makes it tempting for consumers to over-eat, and benefits fast food producers.
- Fructose does not stimulate insulin release as well as glucose and contributes to insulin resistance, which can result in diabetes.
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