The numbers are in and you may not like them.
It’s reported that Corn Products International, a company in the business of making man-made additives like high-fructose corn syrup, recorded a 14 percent profit spike in its second quarter, increasing sales from $596 million a year ago to $645 million.
If you’re a shareholder, congratulations: today is your day. But for the rest of us who are concerned about our health over our wealth, the news is worrisome.
High-fructose corn syrup, an added ingredient in many of our everyday foods like soda pop, candy, sweetened cereals, jams and several baked goods, is made from a mixture of sucrose and fructose. It is used by food and drink manufacturers for several reasons: consumers like its taste as it’s sweeter than refined sugar, its syrupy content makes it easier to blend into soft drinks than refined sugar (according to the National Soft Drink Administration) and it’s very inexpensive to produce. So inexpensive, in fact, that the NSDA saved hundreds of millions of dollars by switching to high fructose corn syrup in the 1980s, according to the NSDA’s vice president who was interviewed by the Washington Post.
This is all well and good for their economic bottom line, but studies have shown that the high amount of fructose in corn syrup is not properly broken down when it enters the blood stream. Unlike glucose, which stimulates the secretion of insulin that then transfers sugars to the body’s cells, fructose does not stimulate insulin secretion. Furthermore, while glucose produces leptin, a hormone that helps regulate appetite and breakdown of fat storage, fructose does not produce leptin either. Thus, consuming high amounts of fructose found in corn syrup contribute to weight storage and overindulgence.
The proof—for lack of a better term—is in the pudding. Across the country, schools are removing vending machines from their hallways and lobby areas because of the growing number of studies that links the consumption of high fructose corn syrup to obesity. And with obesity, comes hordes of other problems, most notably diabetes.
According to James Howenstein, author of the book “A Physician’s Guide to Natural Health Products that Work, " 3 out of 100,000 people had diabetes in the 1880s. Today, estimates indicate that 10 percent of the nation—300,000 people—have some form of diabetes. And the U. S. Center for Disease Control and Prevention abets these statistics by pointing out that 3 out of 50 Americans have Type II Diabetes, a 33 percent rise in the past decade.
“Type II Diabetes is strongly associated with a lack of exercise and a poor diet, " said “Blended Medicine" author Michael Castleman in an interview with Newstarget.com. He went on to say that the particularly harmful diets are the ones high in fat and sugar and low in fiber.
It’s no wonder that there are so many cases of Type II Diabetes when you read the estimates by the Life Extension Foundation, who estimate that the average American eats 150 pounds of sugar per year. Or how about the study done by Tufts University Health and Nutrition Center who found that Americans spent $21 billion on candy alone in 2001 (more than the total value of goods and services produced in 2001 by Lithuania, Costa Rica and Mozambique—combined).
The links between high fructose corn syrup don’t stop with diabetes and obesity. It’s also linked to immune system malfunction, high blood cholesterol levels and osteoporosis. This is because high fructose corn syrup, according to “Prescription Alternative" authors Earl Mindell and Virginia Hopkins, depletes the chromium levels that assist insulin in the passing of glucose from the blood stream to the cells.
The facts don’t lie. It’s important to know how high fructose corn syrup affects our bodies now rather than later and then act accordingly by reducing or eliminating them from our diet—preferably before we see another rise in Corn Products International’s profit margin.
Copyright 2006 Frank Mangano
Frank Mangano is a natural health expert and best selling author who teaches you how to dramatically improve your health naturally, without expensive and potentially dangerous prescription drugs. To learn more, visit one of the most comprehensive and reliable sources for natural health information on the web: http://www.naturalhealthontheweb.com