High Fructose Corn Syrup EXPOSED!
As I promised on my radio show, here is Personal Trainer Herve Duchemin’s AskMen.com article “Celebrity Workout: Tobey Maguire” and the President of the Corn Refiners Association, Audrae Erickson’s response to thus article:
——————– Corn Refiner’s Letter———————————
Subject: Comment: “Celebrity Workout: Tobey Maguire”
Date: Mon, 11 Aug 2008 17:33:17 -0400
Dear Mr. Duchenmin: We read your AskMen.com article “Celebrity Workout: Tobey Maguire,” with interest, particularly the advice to avoid foods that include high fructose corn syrup. We would like to provide you with science-based information on this safe sweetener and be a reference for you for future articles.
Scientific information, sourced from peer-reviewed journal articles that studied high fructose corn syrup (HFCS) specifically, as well as FDA and the USDA, can be found in the following brochure that provides fully cited answers to frequently asked questions about HFCS http://www.hfcsfacts.com/images/pdf/HFCSBrochure.pdf. Links for many of the studies noted in the brochure can be found at http://www.HFCSfacts.com/Related_Links.html.
HFCS, sugar, honey and several fruit juices all contain the same simple sugars.
Dr. Marion Nestle, Paulette Goddard Professor of Nutrition, Food Studies, and Public Health at New York University and author of “What to Eat” and “Food Politics” told the Spokesman Review “HFCS is glucose and fructose separated. Table sugar is glucose and fructose stuck together, but quickly separated by digestive enzymes. … The body can hardly tell them apart.” (Lamberson C. January 2, 2008. “High-fructose corn syrup may be the next target” Spokesman Review.)
Many studies claim that the body processes HFCS differently than other sugars due to the fructose content. Conclusions from these studies cannot be extrapolated to HFCS. That is because the studies looked at the effects of fructose independently.
Like sugar, honey and some fruit juices, HFCS contains almost equal portions of fructose and glucose. As noted by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration in 1996, “the saccharide composition (glucose to fructose ratio) of HFCS is approximately the same as that of honey, invert sugar and the disaccharide sucrose (or table sugar).” (61 Fed. Reg. 43447 (August 23, 1996), 21 C.F.R. 184.1866. Direct food substances affirmed as Generally Recognized as Safe; High Fructose Corn Syrup – Final Rule.)
The absence of glucose makes pure fructose fundamentally different from HFCS. This is because glucose has been shown to have a tempering effect on specific metabolic effects of fructose. Once the combination of glucose and fructose found in HFCS and sucrose are absorbed into the blood stream, the two types of sweetener appear to be metabolized similarly using well-characterized metabolic pathways.
A considerable body of published scientific research finds high fructose corn syrup (HFCS) both safe and no different from other common sweeteners like sugar and honey. Recent scientific studies have shown that the human body appears to metabolize HFCS and sugar in much the same way. Like sugar, honey and some fruit juices, HFCS contains almost equal portions of fructose and glucose. Both sugar and HFCS contain 4 calories per gram.
Kathleen J. Melanson, et al. at the University of Rhode Island reviewed the effects of HFCS and sucrose on circulating levels of glucose, leptin, insulin and ghrelin in a study group of lean women. The study found “no differences in the metabolic effects” of HFCS and sucrose. (Melanson KJ, Zukley L, Lowndes J, Nguyen V, Angelopoulos TJ, Rippe JM. 2007. Effects of high-fructose corn syrup and sucrose consumption on circulating glucose, insulin, leptin, and ghrelin and on appetite in normal-weight women. Nutrition 23(2):103-12.)
Joshua Lowndes, et al. reported on the effects of HFCS and sucrose on circulating levels of uric acid. Uric acid is believed to play a role in the development of the metabolic syndrome. This short-term study found “no differences in the metabolic effects in lean women [of HFCS] compared to sucrose,” and also called for further similar studies of obese individuals and males. (Lowndes J, et al. June 2007. The Effect of High-Fructose Corn Syrup on Uric Acid Levels in Normal Weight Women. Presented at the June 2007 meeting of The Endocrine Society. Program Abstract #P2-45.)
Linda M. Zukley, et al. at the Rippe Lifestyle Institute reviewed the effects of HFCS and sucrose on triglycerides in a study group of lean women. This short-term study found “no differences in the metabolic effects in lean women [of HFCS] compared to sucrose,” and called for further similar studies of obese individuals or individuals at risk for the metabolic syndrome. (Zukley M, et al. June 2007. The Effect of High Fructose Corn Syrup on Post-Prandial Lipemia in Normal Weight Females. Presented at the June 2007 meeting of The Endocrine Society. Program Abstract #P2-46.)
No credible research has demonstrated that HFCS affects appetite differently than sugar. Research by Pablo Monsivais, et al. at the University of Washington found that beverages sweetened with sugar and HFCS as well as 1% milk all have similar effects on feelings of fullness. (Monsivais P, Perrigue MM, Drewnowski A. 2007. Sugars and satiety: does the type of sweetener make a difference? Am J Clin Nutr. Jul;86(1):116-23.)
Stijn Soenen and Margriet S Westerterp-Plantenga from the Department of Human Biology at Maastricht University in The Netherlands studied the effects of beverages sweetened with sugar and high fructose corn syrup as well as milk on feelings of fullness. The researchers found “no differences in satiety, compensation or overconsumption” between the three beverages. (Soenen S and Westerterp-Plantenga MS. 2007. No differences in satiety or energy intake after high-fructose corn syrup, sucrose, or milk preloads. Am J Clin Nutr 86:1586 -94.)
Tina Akhavan and G. Harvey Anderson at the Department of Nutritional Sciences, Faculty of Medicine, University of Toronto studied the effect of solutions containing sugar, HFCS and various ratios of glucose to fructose on food intake, average appetite, blood glucose, plasma insulin, ghrelin and uric acid in men. The researchers found that sugar, HFCS, and 1:1 glucose/fructose solutions do not differ significantly in their short-term effects on subjective and physiologic measures of satiety, uric acid and food intake at a subsequent meal. (Akhavan T. and Anderson GH. November 2007. Effects of glucose-to-fructose ratios in solutions on subjective satiety, food intake, and satiety hormones in young men.Am J Clin Nut. Vol. 86(5) 1354-1363.)
Many parts of the world, including Australia, Mexico and Europe, have rising rates of obesity and diabetes despite having little or no HFCS in their foods and beverages, which supports findings by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and the American Diabetes Association that the primary causes of diabetes are obesity, advancing age and heredity.
Around the world, HFCS accounts for about 8 percent of caloric sweeteners consumed. (LMC International, Inc. 2008. Table 2: World Sugar & HFCS Consumption. Sweetener Analysis January 2008.)
USDA data show that per capita consumption of HFCS has been declining in recent years, yet the incidence of obesity and diabetes in the United States remains on the rise.
An expert review of the research literature on the dietary role of HFCS has found insufficient support for the notion that HFCS could play a unique causal role in obesity. The expert panel led by Richard Forshee, Ph.D. of the University of Maryland Center for Food, Nutrition, and Agriculture Policy (CFNAP) concluded that “the currently available evidence is insufficient to implicate HFCS per se as a causal factor in the overweight and obesity problem in the United States.” (Forshee RA, Storey ML, Allison DB, Glinsmann WH, Hein GL, Lineback DR, Miller SA, Nicklas TA, Weaver GA, White JS. 2007. A Critical Examination of the Evidence Relating High Fructose Corn Syrup and Weight Gain. Critical Reviews in Food Science and Nutrition. 47(6):561–582.)
Most sweeteners undergo processing to make the final sweetener. The sugar refining process consists of numerous steps and process aids including: multiple clarifying steps with heat and lime, polymer flocculent and phosphoric acid; multiple evaporation steps; centrifugation; washing with pressure filtration or chemical treatment; and decolorization with carbon or bone char. Hydrochloric acid and sodium hydroxide, or enzymes are added to liquid sucrose to break the bond between glucose and fructose to make invert sugar. Sucrose from sugar beets is processed by similar methods. (See generally Environmental Protection Agency, AP 42, Compilation of Air Pollutant Emission Factors, Vol. 1, § 126.96.36.199 Sugarcane Processing (5th ed.); Galloway JH. December 1996. History of sugar – Domestication to the 17th Century, abstracted from Annals of the Ass’n of Am. Geographers., Vol. 86, No. 4, at 682-706; Chou CC. 2000. Sugar refining processes and equipment, in Handbook of Sugar Refining: A Manual for the Design and Operation of Sugar Refining Facilities.)
HFCS is made from corn starch, which is separated from other kernel components through multiple grinding and screening steps, centrifugation and washing. The HFCS refining process utilizes multiple enzymes and magnesium and consists of numerous steps including: multiple refining steps using membrane filters, carbon filters and ion-exchange columns; centrifugation; chromatographic separation; and multiple evaporation steps. (See generally White PJ and Johnson LA. 2003. “Corn Sweeteners,” in Corn Chemistry and Technology, 2nd Edition; Alexander RJ. 1998. “Production and Description,” in Sweeteners: Nutritive; and Corn Refiners Association. 2006. “Manufacture,” in Nutritive Sweeteners from Corn, 8th Edition.)
Fruit juice concentrates are purified through heat and enzyme processing and filtered to remove fiber, flavor components and impurities. The end product is almost identical (in calories, sugars and nutrients) to sugar, honey or HFCS. (See generally Nobigrot T, Chasalow FI, Lifshitz F. 1997. Carbohydrate absorption from one serving of fruit juice in young children: age and carbohydrate composition effects. J Am Coll Nutr 16:152-158; Chaplin M, Bucke C. 1990. Enzymes in the fruit juice, wine, brewing and distilling industries, in Enzyme Technology. Cambridge Univ. Press.)
HFCS has a strong history as a safe ingredient recognized by food manufacturers and the U.S. government. In 1983, the Food and Drug Administration listed HFCS as “Generally Recognized as Safe” (known as GRAS status) for use in food, and reaffirmed that ruling in 1996. (61 Fed. Reg. 43447 (August 23, 1996), 21 C.F.R. 184.1866. Direct food substances affirmed as Generally Recognized as Safe; High Fructose Corn Syrup – Final Rule.)
Please do not hesitate to visit our website, www.HFCSfacts.com, for further information or to contact us if we may be of assistance by providing additional information about the products made from corn.
Thank you for your consideration,
Audrae Erickson President
Corn Refiners Association – Washington, DC
|Sent:||Thu 8/14/08 7:57 PM|
Ms. Erickson, It is quite the pleasure to hear from you. I wanted to thank you for the information you have provided, and I will look deeper into the research you have provided me with. Nevertheless, my article was geared towards males who want to “lean down”. I will never recommend the consumption of high fructose corn syrup as a means to drop bodyfat (whether the substance is deemed safe or not). If you were looking to lose bodyfat, would you honestly recommend consuming high fructose corn syrup? I think “organic corn” would be a much better choice, don’t you think? I look forward to your response.
Herve J. Duchemin