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Wednesday, January 27, 2010

sugar: a very well hidden culprit.

I know this is a ton of reading, but take some time it is very valuable info on sugar and all it's different names. Now days everything has some type of hidden sugar in it, but what is what and what is okay to consume? Read on and find out:

     What if you were to discover that this toxic substance had been dumped into your food in gradually increasing quantities for the last thirty years, with the full knowledge and blessings of the American Heart Association, the American Medical Association, the USDA and the FDA?
Would you be angry?
I wish I could tell you that this is just a dramatic plot from some fiction novel, but it’s actually a shocking reality.
The substance dealing such a crushing blow to your health and responsible for many, if not most of the chronic diseases that are so rampant in our society, is sugar -- and more specifically, fructose.
We now know without a doubt that sugar in your food, in all its myriad of forms, is taking a devastating toll on the health of this nation.
High Fructose Corn Syrup Has Only Been Around One Generation!
HFCS was invented in 1966 in Japan and introduced to the American market in 1975. Food and beverage manufacturers began switching their sweeteners from sucrose (table sugar) to corn syrup when they discovered that high fructose corn syrup (HFCS) was far cheaper to make -- sucrose costs about three times as much as HFCS.
HFCS is also about 20 times sweeter than table sugar. So it was expected that less sweetener would be needed per product. Instead, the amount of sweeteners has steadily risen.
The switch from sugar to fructose drastically altered the average American diet. The statistics are beyond alarming:
  • Corn syrup is now found in every type of processed, pre-packaged food you can think of. In fact, the use of HFCS in the U.S. diet increased by a whopping 10,673 percent between 1970 and 2005, according to a report by the USDA[i].
  • The current annual consumption of sugar is 141 pounds per person, and 63 pounds of that is HFCS.
  • Adolescents are taking in 73 grams per day of fructose, mostly from soft drinks and juice drinks -- and 12 percent of their total caloric intake is from fructose alone.
  • In the past century, fructose consumption has increased 5-fold.
  • Processed foods account for more than 90 percent of the money Americans spend on meals.

Glucose is the form of energy you were designed to run on. Every cell in your body, every bacterium -- and in fact, every living thing on the Earth -- uses glucose for energy.
Fructose is not the same molecule. Glucose is a 6-member ring, but fructose is a 5-member ring. Sucrose (table sugar) is 50 percent glucose and 50 percent fructose, and HFCS is 42-55 percent fructose.
It isn’t that fructose itself is bad -- it is the MASSIVE DOSES you’re exposed to that make it dangerous.

I. Glucose Metabolism
Glucose is the basic fuel for living organisms, from bacteria to humans, and is the primary energy source for your brain. It is a product of photosynthesis and is found in rice, corn and other grains, and bread and pasta.
Once you take in glucose from a meal -- like, say, from two slices of bread -- 80 percent of it is used by all of the organs of your body -- every single cell. The remaining 20 percent goes to your liver to be metabolized and stored.
The following is what happens to that 20 percent, once it reaches your liver:
  • Whatever glucose your body doesn’t need immediately gets converted into glycogen for storage in the liver. Glycogen is your body’s non-toxic short-term energy storage package, where it can be easily converted to energy when you need it. Your liver has no limit to how much glycogen it can store without detrimental effects. (That is what athletes take advantage of when they “carbo-load.”)
  • A small amount of pyruvate is produced, which ends up being converted to ATP (the chemical storage form of energy) and carbon dioxide. An even smaller quantity of citrate is produced from this process through the “citrate shuttle,” which ends up as VLDL (very low density lipoproteins, the bad ones) in a process known as de novo lipogenesis -- but we’re talking about a very small amount (less than one calorie from two slices of bread).
  • Insulin is released by your pancreas in response to the rise in blood glucose (i.e., blood sugar), which helps the glucose get into your cells. Without insulin, your cells would not be able to process the glucose and therefore would have no energy for movement, growth, repair, or other functions. Insulin is key to unlocking the door of the cell to allow the glucose to be transferred from the bloodstream into the cell.
  • When you consume 120 calories of glucose, less than one calorie contributes to adverse metabolic outcomes.
This is all very normal, and it’s how you were designed to operate.
III. Fructose Metabolism
Now we finally come to fructose.
When you consume fructose, 100 percent of it goes directly to your liver to be metabolized. This is why it is a hepatotoxin -- it overloads the liver. Fructose metabolism creates the following adverse effects:
  • Fructose is immediately converted to fructose-1-phosphate (F1P), depleting your liver cells of phosphates.
  • The above process produces waste products in the form of uric acid. Uric acid blocks an enzyme that makes nitric oxide. Nitric oxide is your body’s natural blood pressure regulator, so when it is blocked, your blood pressure rises -- leading to hypertension. Elevated uric acid levels can also cause gout.
  • Almost all of the F1P is turned into pyruvate, ending up as citrate, which results in de novo lipogenesis, the end products of which are FFAs, VLDLs, and triglycerides. The result -- hyperlipidemia.
  • Fructose stimulates g-3-p (activated glycerol), which you will recall is the crucial molecule for turning FFAs into triglycerides within the fat cells. Remember, the rate of deposition of fat into fat cells is dependent on the presence of g-3-p. The more g-3-p that is available, the more fat is deposited. Fructose is the carbohydrate most efficiently converted into g-3-p11. In other words, fructose is the most lipophilic carbohydrate.
  • FFAs are exported from the liver and taken up in skeletal muscle, causing skeletal muscle insulin resistance.
  • Some of the FFAs stay in the liver, leading to fat droplet accumulation, hepatic insulin resistance and nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD)[xiii][xiv].
  • Insulin resistance stresses the pancreas, which pumps out more insulin in response to rising blood sugar as your cells are unable to get the sugar out of your bloodstream, and this can progress to type II diabetes.
  • As with a bolus dose of ethanol, a 120-calorie bolus of fructose results in a large fraction (again, about 40 calories) that directly contributes to disease.
    If you want to use a sweetener occasionally, this is what I recommend:
  • Use the herb stevia
  • Use organic cane sugar in moderation
  • Use organic raw honey in moderation
Avoid ALL artificial sweeteners, which can damage your health even more quickly than HFCS.
And I don’t recommend agave syrup since it is a highly processed sap that is almost all fructose. Your blood sugar will spike just as it would if you were consuming regular sugar or HFCS. Agave has gained meteoric popularity due to a great marketing campaign, but any health benefits present in the original agave plant are processed away.(Mercola 2010)

Wow! so what can we eat? Well, as everything else moderation is always key, but clearly try to as much as possible stay away from HFCS and Corn Syrup which is highly processed and not worth consumption!!

be sweet, well.

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