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March 24, 2011
"Thin people with bad health habits are no healthier than fat people with the same habits." Paul Campos, The Diet Myth
In Today's Chat:
* Does High Fructose Corn Syrup Cause Obesity? Or Is It A Myth?
* 11 Healthy Weight Loss Tips
* Get Rich Slowly
* Final Thoughts For Today's Chat
* Does High Fructose Corn Syrup Cause Obesity ? *
In last week's issue of Sleep Chat,
I wrote about hidden chemicals called obesogens
that appear to be factors in obesity.
I want to continue my series on weight issues because sleep deprivation, snoring, sleep apnea, obesity, and being overweight are so interconnected.
High fructose corn syrup (HFCS) has been called a food obesogen by some health writers and researchers.
They claim that eating and drinking foods that contain HFCS leads to weight gain and obesity because it increases hunger, causes food cravings, and leads to more fat in the body. This information is sort of taken for granted as one of the obesity facts we hear about.
I decided to investigate the scientific literature on this to see if this was true or not.
The first thing you should know is that high fructose corn syrup is widely used in foods because it is very sweet. Just look at food labels and you'll see it gets added to everything from breads and sauces (especially ketchup) to cookies, sodas and fruit drinks.
Secondly, keep in mind many of the studies on HFCS used extremely high daily doses of HFCS.
So is HFCS the “poison” and “health destroyer” some of these health writers and dozens of research papers say it is?
An excellent paper published in the journal Nutrition and Metabolism (see below) clearly and methodically debunks much of the bad press that HFCS gets.
The researchers state that at reasonable consumption levels, “there is no direct evidence linking obesity to the consumption of physiological amounts of fructose in humans.”
And in the journal Physiological Reviews (see below), the authors concluded: 1) there is no unequivocal evidence that fructose intake at moderate doses is directly related with adverse events in man 2) there is no direct evidence for more serious metabolic consequences of high fructose corn syrup versus sucrose consumption.
The "obesity facts" about high fructose corn syrup aren't looking so clear cut now, are they?
So what does this all mean for you?
Without a doubt, excess sugar in the diet in any form...whether high fructose corn syrup—also known as corn sugar; white sugar—also shown as sucrose on food labels; brown sugar; dextrose; or even maple syrup...may lead to weight gain.
There is also no doubt that millions of people drink far too many soft drinks every day, they eat junk food, and they do not exercise. And that's why they are fat (although genetics does play a role also).
I personally avoid foods with high fructose corn syrup because most of them are junk. People with diabetes would probably also be wise to limit consumption of high fructose corn syrup, just as with other sugars.
However, from what I have read, I'm not convinced that a little bit of HFCS in the diet is as evil as it has been made out to be.
And I am not convinced that high fructose corn syrup by itself is the cause of worldwide obesity.
1. Nutrition & Metabolism 2010 Nov 4, 7:82, Health implications of fructose consumption: A review of recent data.
2. Physiological Reviews, 90: 23–46, 2010; Metabolic Effects of Fructose and the Worldwide Increase in Obesity
* 11 Healthy Weight Loss Tips *
I wrote so much information for this section, it made the newsletter too long. So I have posted the information as an article on my website. You can read these tips
* Get Rich Slowly *
Okay, enough talking about being overweight. Let's talk about something a lot more fun...money!
There's a money website I like to visit occasionally. The site has lots of great tips on personal finance, taxes, spending money wisely, real estate investing, and just about anything else money related that you can think of.
The web address is http://www.getrichslowly.org (notice it's org on the end, not com).
* Final Thoughts For Today's Chat *
Although in this issue I have written about obesity and how to lose weight, I want to point out that it is far more important to focus on following good health practices.
Cut out junk food and get active and the weight will take care of itself.
And the healthier you become, the better you will sleep. Daily exercise done in the morning or midday is one of the best natural sleep aids there is.
If you would like to comment on what I have written today, just reply to this ezine and give me your thoughts.
For now, I'm outta' here. Life is a journey. Keep exploring.
We'll chat soon.
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Sleep & Health Writer
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