What do you really know about high-fructose corn syrup and sugar? The media often portrays sugar and high-fructose corn syrup as the main culprit in obesity. But what’s the difference between high-fructose corn syrup and sugar?
High-fructose corn syrup (HFCS) is a common sweetener. Research shows that high-fructose corn syrup is chemically similar to table sugar. Fructose, part of HFCS, is a naturally occurring simple sugar that’s produced by nature. It is more soluble in water than glucose. Glucose is another simple sugar that is also made in nature. When you put fructose and glucose together it becomes a basic form of table sugar.
Corn syrup is made from corn starch and has a high content of glucose. It is combined with fructose to make high fructose corn syrup. There is controversy over how the body reacts to high-fructose corn syrup instead of table sugar because it is made chemically.
According to the American Heart Association (AHA), there are two types of sugars in American diets: naturally occurring sugars and added sugars. Women should consume no more than 100 calories per day (about 6 teaspoons of sugar). Men should consume about 150 calories per day (about 9 teaspoons).
Tips from the American Heart Association for Reducing Sugar in Your Diet
* Don’t add sugar to cereal, grits, or oatmeal. Try fresh fruit or dried fruit instead.
* Instead of adding sugar in recipes use various spices or extracts to increase flavor.
* Try non-nutritive sweeteners such as aspartame, sucralose or saccharin. The FDA has determined that non-nutritive sweeteners are safe.
* Cut back on the amount of sugar added to things you eat or drink regularly like coffee or tea.
* Buy sugar-free or low-calorie beverages.
* Buy fresh fruit!
The next time you are in Bridgeport Cafe, think twice about adding lots of sugar to your breakfast and consider adding fresh fruit instead!