Friday, June 18, 2010

Food Rules Friday

This is the fourth installment of the weekly feature, "Food Rules Friday," featuring a rule from Michael Pollan's newest book, "Food Rules - An Eater's Manual." Michael Pollan is an acclaimed author and whole food/heathy eating advocate. He is the author of the best selling "In Defense of Food" and "The Omnivore's Dillemma."

Rule #4: "Avoid food products that contain high-fructose corn syrup."

Pollan's objection to HFCS is simply that it's presence indicates a food product that is highly processed.  The  food industry adds HFCS and other sugars to many foods that traditionally did not contain sugar. 

Adding sugar encourages the consumer to eat more of the products, and the extra sugars contribute to the national epedemics of increased obesity and diabetes.

Personally, I avoided HFCS, as much as possible, long before reading Pollan's books.  Pollan states that sugar is sugar, and doesn't seem to feel that HFCS is much worse than other sugar.  I'm concerned about the body of research that shows that HFCS is actually worse than other sugars.  Table sugar is about half sucrose and half fructose.  HFCS is approximately 80% fructose.  Fructose is metabolised differently than sucrose.  Instead of being converted to glucose, which is burned as an energy source, fructose is converted to fats and stored in the liver!  Too much of any sugar is a problem, but using a sugar containing almost twice as much fructose is far worse!

No comments: