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How and Why You Should Cut Back On Fructose

The average American consumes a whopping 76 pounds of sugar every year. http://dherbs.com/uploads/news/id9174/syrupthumb.jpg

The average American consumes a whopping 76 pounds of sugar every year, which is wreaking havoc on our health by increasing the risk of diabetes, metabolic syndrome and heart disease. More and more research shows that the negative health effects of all this sugar are attributable to fructose. High fructose corn syrup is about 55% fructose. White sugar, and even the best natural substitutes for sugar – like honey and maple syrup – all break down in your body to 50% fructose. Some diabetic or low-glycemic products are sweetened with fructose, since it has minimal effect on blood sugar levels. Fruit and fruit juice also contain varying amounts of fructose.

The negative health effects of fructose include:

  • Increase in belly fat, especially fat around your abdominal organs, including the liver. This is the most detrimental type of body fat.
  • Increased triglycerides.
  • Increased cholesterol levels.
  • Insulin resistance, which can be the first step on the path to type 2 diabetes.
  • May promote high blood pressure by raising uric acid levels.

The biggest source of fructose intake for many people is drinking soda and other sugar or high fructose corn syrup-sweetened drinks, like sports drinks, sweetened teas and juice drinks. Desserts like cakes, cookies, pies, and ice cream as well as sweetened non-dessert foods like yogurt, granola bars, and cold cereals are other big sources of added sugar. 

It’s important to note that just because a dessert is gluten-free, dairy-free, and/or vegan doesn't mean that it’s good for you. Any kind of dessert should be a treat eaten on special occasions, not every day. Remember that any beverage or dessert sweetened with sugar contains almost as much fructose as one sweetened with high fructose corn syrup.

How to break your sugar habit and limit your intake of fructose:

  • Don't drink soda or any sugar-sweetened beverages.
  • Limit desserts to special occasions, not every day.
  • Avoid any low glycemic or diabetic foods that are sweetened with fructose.
  • Avoid non-dessert foods like that have added sugar like yogurts, cold cereals, and granola bars. Eat unsweetened varieties instead or sweeten foods yourself with a small amount of maple syrup or honey.
  • Limit your use of agave nectar, as it contain at least 80% fructose!
  • Don’t drink fruit juice.
  • Limit your fruit intake to 2-3 servings/day. You are much better off eating lots of vegetables, which don’t contain fructose.
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Our little ones are exposed to far too many chemicals in their daily life and much of that exposure comes from their diet. Phthalates, endocrine disruptors known to cause hormonal changes, are present twice as often as EPA considers safe for children. Meat, poultry in particular, as well as dairy were two of the main culprits in the study, which was published in the journal of Environmental Health. Parents should consider going phthalate free as much as possible.

“When the children’s toys were being brought up, it was specifically for kids mouthing a lot of plastic toys,” said Sathyanarayana, who is also an investigator at the Seattle Children’s Research Institute. “Now that we have more information and the research has evolved, we know [there are] other sources.” In addition to diet, those would be dust tracked into homes by everyday foot traffic and the creams and lotions used mostly by women for personal care.

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Wall Street Journal: Why The Price of Meat is Skyrocketing

Need one more reason to go vegetarian? The cost of meat continues to rise.

Consumers are paying 10 percent more for meat compared to this time last year, says a new article by the Wall Street Journalentitled “Vegans Rejoice: Meat Prices Rising More Than Fresh Fruits and Vegetables.” 

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