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How Sweet It Ain't!

  • Broadcast in Health



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High Fructose Corn Syrup (HFCS) - how sweet it ain't! High-fructose corn syrup, sometimes called corn sugar, has become a popular ingredient in sodas and fruit-flavored drinks. In fact, HFCS is the most common added sweetener in processed foods and beverages. Given how ubiquitous HFCS is, some people are concerned about possible adverse health effects.

Although HFCS is chemically similar to table sugar (sucrose), concerns have been raised because of how HFCS is processed. Some believe that your body reacts differently to HFCS than it does to other types of sugar.

Some research studies have linked consumption of large amounts of any type of added sugar — not just HFCS — to such health problems as weight gain, dental cavities, poor nutrition, and increased triglyceride levels, which can boost your heart attack risk.

Recommendations from the American Heart Association say that most American women should consume no more than 100 calories a day from added sugar from any source, and that most American men should consume no more than 150 calories a day from added sugar, and even less is better. That's about 6 teaspoons of added sugar for women and 9 for men.

It's prudent to consume any added sugar only in moderation. Consider these tips to cut back:

  • Avoid sugary, nondiet sodas. Drink water or other unsweetened beverages instead.
  • Choose breakfast cereals carefully. Although healthy breakfast cereals can contain added sugar to make them more appealing to children, skip the non-nutritious, sugary and frosted cereals.
  • Eat fewer processed and packaged foods, such as cookies, cakes and some microwaveable meals.
  • Snack on vegetables, fruit & whole-grain crackers.