Fructose is one of the main components of added sugar. It is a simple type of sugar that makes up about 50 percent of table sugar or sucrose. Table sugar is also made up of glucose or the main energy source of the human body. However, fructose needs to be turned into glucose by the liver before it can be used as fuel for energy by our cells. Fructose, sucrose, and glucose are all naturally found in fruits, vegetables, dairy products, and whole grains as well as in many processed foods. The effects of this simple sugar on our health have been a controversial topic for many years. Research studies are starting to demonstrate the connection between fructose and obesity, diabetes, and even cancer.
What is Fructose?
Fructose, also referred to as fruit sugar, is a monosaccharide or simple sugar like glucose. It’s naturally found in fruits, most root vegetables, agave, and honey. Moreover, it’s commonly added to processed foods as high-fructose corn syrup. The fructose used in high-fructose corn syrup mainly comes from corn, sugar beets, and sugar cane. High-fructose corn syrup is made from cornstarch and it has more of this simple sugar than glucose, compared to regular corn syrup. Fructose has the sweetest taste of the three sugars. It is digested and absorbed differently by the human body. Because monosaccharides are simple sugars, they don’t need to be broken down to be used as fuel for energy by our cells.
Natural foods that are high in fructose can include:
- apple juice
- dry figs
- Jerusalem artichokes
- chicory roots
- agave syrup
Similar to glucose, fructose is absorbed directly into the bloodstream through the small intestine. Healthcare professionals have found that fructose has the least impact on blood sugar levels. It increases blood sugar levels much more gradually than glucose does and it doesn’t seem to immediately affect insulin levels. However, although this simple sugar has the least impact on blood sugar levels than any of the other simple types of sugars, it may ultimately cause more long-term negative effects on the human body. Fructose needs to be turned into glucose by the liver before it can be used as fuel for energy by our cells. Eating excess fructose can increase triglycerides and lead to metabolic syndrome.
Why is Fructose Bad for You?
When people eat a diet that is high in calories and processed foods with lots of high-fructose corn syrup, the liver can become overwhelmed and start turning fructose into fat. Research studies are starting to demonstrate the connection between this simple sugar and an increased risk of developing a variety of health issues, including obesity, type 2 diabetes, and even cancer. Many healthcare professionals also believe that eating excess fructose is one of the main causes of metabolic disorders. However, there currently isn’t enough evidence to demonstrate the full extent to which fructose can contribute to these health issues. Nevertheless, numerous research studies have justified these controversial concerns.
Research studies have demonstrated that eating excess fructose can increase LDL or bad cholesterol which may lead to fat accumulation around the organs and heart disease. As a result, evidence showed that the deposition of fat in the liver due to the negative effects of this simple sugar can also result in non-alcoholic fatty liver disease. Eating excess fructose may also affect body fat regulation. Other research studies have demonstrated that because fructose doesn’t suppress appetite as much as other types of sugars do, it can promote overeating which may lead to obesity, insulin resistance, and type 2 diabetes. Furthermore, evidence has demonstrated that fructose can increase uric acid levels and cause gout.
For information regarding if fructose is bad for your health, please review the following article:
AS PREVIOUSLY MENTIONED IN THE FOLLOWING ARTICLE, FRUCTOSE IS ONE OF THE MAIN COMPONENTS OF ADDED SUGAR. IT IS A SIMPLE SUGAR THAT MAKES UP APPROXIMATELY 50 PERCENT OF TABLE SUGAR OR SUCROSE. TABLE SUGAR ALSO CONSISTS OF GLUCOSE OR THE MAIN ENERGY SOURCE OF THE HUMAN BODY. HOWEVER, FRUCTOSE NEEDS TO BE CONVERTED INTO GLUCOSE BY THE LIVER BEFORE IT CAN BE UTILIZED AS FUEL FOR ENERGY BY OUR CELLS. FRUCTOSE, SUCROSE, AND GLUCOSE ARE ALL NATURALLY FOUND IN SEVERAL FRUITS, VEGETABLES, DAIRY PRODUCTS, AND WHOLE GRAINS AS WELL AS IN MANY PROCESSED FOODS. THE EFFECTS OF THIS SIMPLE SUGAR ON OUR HEALTH HAVE BEEN A CONTROVERSIAL TOPIC FOR MANY YEARS. RESEARCH STUDIES ARE STARTING TO DEMONSTRATE THE CONNECTION BETWEEN FRUCTOSE AND OBESITY, DIABETES, AND EVEN CANCER. IN THE FOLLOWING ARTICLE, WE DISCUSS IF FRUCTOSE IS BAD FOR YOUR HEALTH. DRINKING SMOOTHIES ADD A HEALTHY NUTRITIONAL BOOST. – DR. ALEX JIMENEZ D.C., C.C.S.T. INSIGHTS
Sweet and Spicy Juice
Cook time: 5-10 minutes
• 1 cup honeydew melons
• 3 cups spinach, rinsed
• 3 cups Swiss chard, rinsed
• 1 bunch cilantro (leaves and stems), rinsed
• 1-inch knob of ginger, rinsed, peeled, and chopped
• 2-3 knobs whole turmeric root (optional), rinsed, peeled, and chopped
Juice all ingredients in a high-quality juicer. Best served immediately.
Red peppers have almost 2.5 times more vitamin C than oranges
Citrus fruits like oranges are a great source of vitamin C, however, there are other fruits and vegetables that offer an even better boost of this essential nutrient. Just half a red pepper, eaten raw, offers more than your requirement of vitamin C for the day, according to healthcare professionals. Cut it into crudités for a healthy mid-morning or afternoon snack. Red peppers are also rich in a variety of other essential nutrients, including vitamin A, B6, folate, and antioxidants!
The scope of our information is limited to chiropractic, musculoskeletal, physical medicines, wellness, and sensitive health issues and/or functional medicine articles, topics, and discussions. We use functional health & wellness protocols to treat and support care for injuries or disorders of the musculoskeletal system. Our posts, topics, subjects, and insights cover clinical matters, issues, and topics that relate and support directly or indirectly our clinical scope of practice.* Our office has made a reasonable attempt to provide supportive citations and has identified the relevant research study or studies supporting our posts. We also make copies of supporting research studies available to the board and or the public upon request. We understand that we cover matters that require an additional explanation as to how it may assist in a particular care plan or treatment protocol; therefore, to further discuss the subject matter above, please feel free to ask Dr. Alex Jimenez or contact us at 915-850-0900. The provider(s) Licensed in Texas*& New Mexico*
Curated by Dr. Alex Jimenez D.C., C.C.S.T.
- Gunnars, Kris. “Is Fructose Bad for You? The Surprising Truth.” Healthline, Healthline Media, 23 Apr. 2018, www.healthline.com/nutrition/why-is-fructose-bad-for-you#section1.
- Nall, Rachel. “Is Fructose Bad for You? Benefits, Risks, and Other Sugars.” Medical News Today, MediLexicon International, 28 Nov. 2018, www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/323818.
- Groves, Melissa. “Sucrose vs Glucose vs Fructose: What’s the Difference?” Healthline, Healthline Media, 8 June 2018, www.healthline.com/nutrition/sucrose-glucose-fructose.
- Rizkalla, Salwa W. “Health Implications of Fructose Consumption: A Review of Recent Data.” National Center for Biotechnology Information, BioMed Central, 4 Nov. 2010, www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2991323/.
- Daniluk, Julie. “5 Health Benefits of Red Peppers. Plus, Our World’s Healthiest Pizza Recipe.” Chatelaine, 26 Feb. 2016, www.chatelaine.com/health/healthy-recipes-health/five-health-benefits-of-red-peppers/.