Monday, February 14, 2011

The difference between fructose and glucose: it's not all in your mind

Many food activists and public health researchers are ready to pin a substantial portion of blame for the nation's obesity epidemic on the skyrocketing consumption of high-fructose corn syrup, widely used to sweeten processed foods and beverages in the U.S. since the 1980s. But food and beverage makers are fighting back.

Glucose and fructose are both simple sugars--and equal parts of each is the recipe for table sugar. (High-fructose corn syrup is a bit more intensely sweet because it's made up of 55% fructose.) But scientists have long suspected there are differences in the way the human body processes these two forms of carbohydrate. But much of that research has been conducted on animals, leading many to question whether the human body makes any distinction between glucose and fructose.

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