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Americans are in love with sweets – candy, sodas, ice cream, cake and pies. We love them all. However, there are different kinds of sugar; some of them are good and some not so good. Fructose is one of the questionable sugars. Natural frutcose is a monosacchride, or simple sugar, that is used for energy and is found in fruit and vegetables. It is usually bound to glucose, another naturally occurring sugar. In small amounts, Fructose is part of a healthy diet.
Fructose has been on the market in corn syrup for approximately 40 years. Food manufacturers found it to be an inexpensive substitute for sugar as a sweetener, in part because of the federal subsidies paid to corn farmers.
Fructose, as high fructose corn syrup (HFCS), is a different matter. It has been found to contribute to obesity, high blood pressure, heart disease and pancreatic cancer. Fructose’s properties change as HFCS and the body, particularly the liver, is unable to properly or completely process the fructose. Once overwhelmed, the liver starts producing fats as triglycerides and releases them into the bloodstream. Triglycerides are a known contributor to high blood pressure and heart disease.
A study conducted by the University of California Los Angeles linked HFCS to pancreatic cancer. Researchers tested frutcose with pancreatic cancer cells and found that once the cells absorbed the fructose, they multiplied. Glucose, on the other hand, did not cause a reaction from the cancer cells. Another study by Princeton University found that obesity rates in the United States had risen from 15 percent in 1970 – when fructose was introduced – to approximately 33 percent in 2010.