High Fructose Corn Syrup – What the Commercials Don’t Tell You

If you watch television for even an hour a week, chances are you’ve seen the misleading commercials promoting the safety of consuming high-fructose corn syrup.  That it’s “all right in moderation”, and that ” sugar is sugar”.  Well folks, nothing could be further from the truth.  This all-too-common sweetener not only prevents weight loss, it promotes weight gain, along with a long list of other very unpleasant health side effects.

Scientists now confirm that eating even small amounts of high-fructose corn syrup, can impair the body’s appetite-suppressing hormones, making weight loss all but impossible.  And, tragically HFCS (high-fructose corn syrup) is now found in at least 70% of all prepackaged foods!

The Problem With High-Fructose Corn Syrup

HFCS is a mind-bogglingly common sweetener, yet it’s also one of the most toxic chemicals found in our food supply.  It’s made from corn, which is a highly allergenic substance, and has a devastating impact on human health, including significantly disrupting the function of the liver and pancreas, organs that control our body weight by metabolizing fatty acids and regulating blood sugar.

Consuming HFCS triggers a vicious cyclic reaction involving the liver.  In order to metabolize HFCS, the liver must produce 3 different enzymes.  The more often one consumes HFCS, the higher these particular enzyme levels creep up, which in turn makes the body much more sensitive and reactive to every subsequent exposure to HFCS.  If your regularly eat foods containing HFCS, eventually even a single large serving dose of HFCS can trigger energy shock in the liver, which means a sudden, severe drop in the liver’s function, and that can impact dozens of bodily systems.

America’s obesity epidemic

Experts searching for the cause of America’s obesity epidemic stumbled upon an interesting link dating back to the 1960’s.  That’s when the weight of the average American began to climb AND when food manufacturers started swapping good old-fashioned sugar for man-made (as well as cheaper, sweeter and more versatile) high-fructose corn syrup.  This connection appears to be more than just a coincidence.  As more HFCS has been incorporated into our food supply, the weight of the average American has also continued to expand.

High-fructose corn syrup has so infiltrated our food supply, that at least 70% of ALL prepackaged foods contain HFCS, including “healthy” foods such as granola bars, low-fat yogurt and whole wheat bread.  Food items that many rely on as being “healthy” and “good for you”.  In fact, health-conscious consumers inadvertently consume as much as 62 pounds of HFCS every single year.

How High-Fructose Corn Syrup TriggersWeight Gain

* Consuming even small amounts of HFCS impairs the body’s ability to recognize leptin, a hormone that controls appetite.

* Levels of metabolic wastes spike whenever HFCS is consumed.  This can disrupt the body’s ability to control blood sugar, raising the risk of fat storage and weight gain.

* The body produces a hunger-inducing hormone called ghrelin when it’s time to eat, but eating HFCS doesn’t dampen ghrelin production once you start eating.  This is why people who consume HFCS foods still feel hungry even after eating a large meal.  Food manufacturers are most likely well aware of this fact, as this equates to more sales of their product.  If you can’t stop eating after 1 portion, you’ll likely end up eating double or triple the portion size.  The food manufacturer is probably counting on this, for this would most likely cause the consumer to purchase their product more frequently, as well as in larger quantities.

* HFCS causes inflammation of the liver cells.  This reduces the liver’s ability to perform lipolysis, which is the process of breaking down fat for fuel.

More Nightmare Health Effects From Consuming High-Fructose Corn Syrup

* It makes skin sag.  HFCS speeds what is called the Maillard reaction, which is a cross-linking of proteins that make skin less smooth.

* It ages the liver.  HFCS reduces the liver’s ability to detoxify the body and break down fat.  This causes body-wide cellular inflammation, which can prematurely age the liver.

* It raises blood pressure.  HFCS causes levels of inflammatory uric acid to spike, which can raise blood pressure by as up to 32%!

* It desensitizes the pancreas.  HFCS makes the pancreas’s beta cells less responsive to blood sugar changes, which can cause high blood sugar, insulin resistance and diabetes.

Richard J. Johnson M.D., author of “The Sugar Fix”, states that “At high doses, high-fructose corn syrup is metabolic poison, raising the risk of disease.”

Shopping Tips

Reading labels, and knowing what to look for, will help ensure that your food choices don’t contain high-fructose corn syrup.  Also, be wary of any ingredient with “fructose” in the name.

Avoid “Low Fat” and “Fat Free” Items

When food manufacturers take out the fat, more often than not, they pack in sweeteners to maintain the flavor and texture of the product.  And, because HFCS is the cheapest sweetener in the food manufacturing industry, a supposedly healthy low-fat yogurt can actually have up to twice as much HFCS than the full-fat version.

Don’t Rely On “Natural” or “Organic” Versions

Many major manufacturers, including Jif, Pepperidge Farm and Ocean Spray, now offer healthier products that use real sugar or molasses as sweeteners, instead of man-made HFCS.  BUT, other manufactuerers have products that simply pose as healthy.  One of the problems is that the FDA doesn’t regulate the use of the word “natural”, so some foods labeled as “natural” are still filled with HFCS.  And “organic” only means completely free of HFCS if it says “100% Certified Organic” on the label.  Bottom line….don’t rely on the front of the label.  For full, or at least better disclosure of a products ingredients, carefully examine the ingredients labels before putting it into your grocery cart.

The power of marketing can be just that….powerful.  And, unfortunately it seems that there is far too much deceitful and misleading advertising practices aimed at the consumer, who put their trust in agencies who are supposedly in existence to watch over such matters on their behalf.  The bottom line is, you need to be responsible for you.  Nobody will ever be as mindful or concerned about your health as you….even the so-called consumer watch groups, who rightfully need a watch group of their own.

Bon Veggie Appetit!

Gina ‘The Veggie Goddess’ Matthews

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