High-fructose corn syrup is a common sweetener in sodas, beverages, and processed foods. As use of high-fructose corn syrup has increased in the past two decades, so have levels of obesity and related health problems. This has led many Americans to ask if that’s just a coincidence.
Food science shows that high-fructose corn syrup is chemically similar to table sugar. Controversy endures by asking whether the body handles high-fructose corn syrup differently than table sugar. At this time, there’s insufficient evidence to say that high-fructose corn syrup is any less healthy than other types of sweeteners.
It is however known, that too much added sugar of all kinds — not just high-fructose corn syrup — can contribute unwanted calories that are linked to health problems, such as type 2 diabetes, metabolic syndrome and high triglyceride levels. All of these boost your risk of heart disease.
The American Heart Association recommends that most women get no more than 100 calories a day (6 teaspoons) of added sugar from any source, and that most men get no more than 150 calories a day (9 teaspoons) of added sugar. If you’re concerned about your health, the smart play is to cut back on added sugar, regardless of the type.
Edited by: Lindsey Traudt, LCPC