Have you seen the TV commercials proudly stating that high fructose corn syrup is just as safe as table sugar? In the commercials, one of the characters asks something like, "Haven't you heard what they say about corn syrup?" And the other responds, "Like what?" Which, of course, is met with silence.
Well, to say that something is as safe as table sugar really isn't saying much. Sugar, even in moderation, can wreak havoc on your body. In excess, as most Americans eat it, sugar is downright dangerous. My good friend and colleague Nan Fuchs, PhD just wrote an article about how sugar, not salt, puts you at a much higher risk for heart attacks. So comparing anything to sugar isn't a great starting point for corn syrup. But it gets worse.
A new study just found that high fructose corn syrup is actually significantly more toxic than table sugar.
In this study, University of Utah biologists fed mice either sugar or high fructose corn syrup to mice in doses proportional to a typical human dose. They divided the mice into two groups and gave each group a healthy diet along with 25% of their calories from either sugar or high fructose corn syrup.
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The female mice eating the high fructose corn syrup were nearly twice (1.87) as likely to die during the study. And they produced 26.4% fewer offspring. What's interesting is that there wasn't any difference in the male mice. Why?
The researchers said that a study they did in 2013 showed that sugar and high fructose corn syrup were both equally toxic to male mice. Both caused the male mice to not hold their territory or reproduce by 25% less. So males are more susceptible to sugars than females.
This study showed that the cause of both the higher death rate among the female mice and their lower birth rates were not due to higher glucose levels in the blood. The reason? One researcher said, "We speculate that the different sugars could favor different microbes in the guts of mice. Other research has shown differences in bacterial communities in the gut to be associated with metabolic diseases in rodents and in humans. It's possible one form of sugar causes more bacteria to get across your gut than another."
In other words, the high fructose corn syrup is more toxic to the bacteria in your gut (if you're female) than table sugar. And the impact can shorten your life. The reality is both types of sweetener are deadly. So you need to avoid both. If you need to sweeten your drinks, then use the herbal extract Stevia. It doesn't cause any of these problems.
Your insider for better health,
Steve Kroening is the editor of Nutrient Insider, a twice-a-week email newsletter that brings you the latest healing breakthroughs from the world of nutrition and dietary supplements. For over 20 years, Steve has worked hand-in-hand with some of the nation's top doctors, including Drs. Robert Rowen, Frank Shallenberger, Nan Fuchs, William Campbell Douglass, and best-selling author James Balch. Steve is the author of the book Practical Guide to Home Remedies. As a health journalist, Steve's articles have appeared in countless magazines, blogs, and websites.