High Fructose Corn Poison

December 27, 2012
By Sarah Rodeo PLATINUM, New York, New York
Sarah Rodeo PLATINUM, New York, New York
49 articles 0 photos 0 comments

There is a certain substance that most American citizens put into their bodies all the time without ever really being aware of it. What is this mysterious type of matter? Oxygen? No – it is high fructose corn syrup.

High fructose corn syrup is a synthetic sugar derived from cornstarch. In order to make the sweetener, corn’s starch molecules are chemically altered and spun into a type of syrup that is made up of 45% fructose and 55% glucose. Sodium hydroxide, which is used to separate the corn starch from the kernel, can be contaminated with mercury. This chemical has been linked to gastrointestinal, kidney, neurological, and respiratory damage, cancer, and death.

High fructose corn syrup yields the same number of calories and sugar grams as the sucrose present in table sugar. Once fructose and sucrose are ingested, they are immediately released into the bloodstream and converted to fat in the liver. Any type of added sugar has been linked to health conditions such as dental cavities, high blood sugar, obesity, diabetes, and cancer.
However, this type of fructose in particular is metabolized differently by the human body. Processed fructose disrupts metabolism because it does not produce leptin, a hormone that decreases hunger. Hoewever, it often releases ghrelin, a hormone that signals hunger and thereby causes a greater calorie intake. When ingested, fructose skips the process of glycolysis, which is part of a normal carbohydrate metabolism. This makes fructose an unregulated source of acetyl-coA, which is the starting material for fatty acid synthesis. Coupled with the unstimulated leptin levels, fat deposition is stimulated. During this process, the liver releases more fat into the blood. This all results in increased triglyceride levels that can boost the risk of heart attack.

In addition, sodas containing high fructose corn syrup were found to have high levels of reactive carbonyls. These are compounds found in diabetics that may contribute to tissue damage, as recent research has demonstrated. Lastly, the fructose in this unnatural mixture of sugars inhibits regular carbohydrate absorption of glucose, which causes cramps, bloating and loose stools.

High fructose corn syrup is abundant in our packaged foods, including junk food like candy, chips, soda, and baked goods. However, high fructose corn syrup also lurks in the foods that we generally consider to be healthy, ranging from breads and cereals to protein bars and yogurts. It comes as no surprise that drinks such as iced teas, lemonade and sports drinks, are also polluted with high fructose corn syrup. Another under-the-radar source of the sweetener is condiments such as barbecue sauces, hot sauces, jellies, syrups, and ketchup. It never seems to end, does it?

Now that you are aware of the health repercussions of this toxic substance, you have no excuse to keep ingesting it. How can you avoid putting this artificial foodstuff into your body? Before you eat a processed food, take a moment to turn over the wrapper and make sure that the words “high fructose corn syrup” do not plague the ingredients label.

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