Thursday, September 30, 2010

Pour Some Corn Syrup on Me

As a mom, I constantly think about what food my child eats.  I want her to grow up to be healthy and happy, not be plagued by obesity or diabetes.  Do I want her to eat a balanced diet?  Yes.  Do I want to keep fatty foods at a minimum?  Yes.  Do I fret about it and cause myself to have an embolism?  No.

I get so sick of the fear that many groups spread to the general public.  Don't eat this, it will cause cancer!  Don't eat that, it will make you fat!  Don't even think about touching this, it will cause you to break out in oozing blisters and make your toes fall off!  Oh dear!

The latest installment of fear has come in the form of High Fructose Corn Syrup (HFCS).  Hunts ketchup and Sierra Mist are only two of the products that have stopped using it in the name of "health".  Why, you ask?  A consumer poll recently showed that many consumers believe HFCS to be higher in fructose than cane sugar, making them not want to purchase anything with HFCS in it.  This isn't the truth.  Since the name is misleading people, the Corn Refiners Association has petitioned the Food and Drug Administration to allow manufacturers the option of using the term "corn sugar" instead of HFCS, with the hope that this will eliminate any further confusion.

An uproar of gigantic proportions has come about because of said petition.  There is even a website devoted to stopping the name change by "demanding a more transparent and healthier food chain".   Before becoming a lemming, do the research folks.  A sugar is a sugar.  Studies show that HFCS and cane sugar are basically the same. They contain the same calories, they are metabolized the same, and they are nutrionally the same.  They are both still sugars though.  And no one ever said that sugar is good for you!  In fact, there isn't even a recommended daily allowance for it.  If you consume 10 cans of Mountain Dew a day, or 10 cans of the Mountain Dew Throwback version, you are still consuming massive amounts of sugar, neither of which is good for you.

Basically, what I'm jabbering on about here is that a sugar is a sugar.  If you limit your intake you are better off in the long run.  But if you enjoy a little sugary snack every now and again, it's not going to kill you.  Doesn't matter if it's made from cane sugar, corn sugar, or beet sugar.

I'm going to step off my soapbox now but if you would like a little more information, I suggest checking out these websites:

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