Manipulating the sugar in your diet may lead to better health

Harold Mandel's picture
Sugar

Researchers have found the kind of sugar you consume, not just the amount, has an impact on problems with your health. In rats it has been determined fructose consumption for a long time causes more vascular and liver damage than sucrose consumption.

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The craving for sugar seems to be addictive in nature. The sweet taste of sugar is loved by men, women and children worldwide. Unfortunately there have been concerns raised about the potential for negative health consequences from eating too much sugar.

It is the type of sugar consumed, not simply the amount, which matters most

The American Physiological Society reports when considering risk factors for health problems associated with sugar consumption it is the type of sugar consumed, not simply the amount, which matters most. Researchers have observed there is significant vascular and liver function impairment in rats with fructose consumption over a long period of time.

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Risk for chronic illness may be determined by the kind of sugar you eat nut just the number of calories you consume

Your risk for chronic illness may be determined by the kind of sugar you eat nut just the number of calories you consume. In the first study of its kind which has compared the effects of fructose and sucrose on metabolic and vascular function there was a significant increase in body weight seen only with the fructose group of rats. This was noted even though the total calorie intake of the rats fed glucose was higher.

Liver damage in the fructose consuming group of rats was higher than in the glucose group

Aside from more weight gain there were more markers of vascular disease and liver damage in the fructose consuming group of rats than in the glucose group. These markers included an increase in the weight of the liver, high triglycerides, less fat burning in the liver which is a factor that can cause fatty liver, and poor relaxation of the aorta which can have an affect blood pressure.

This study has been published in the journal Heart and Circulatory Physiology. There have been adverse cardio-metabolic effects noted with high consumption of simple sugars. These findings have suggested a higher amount calories consumed due to sugar sweeteners is not the only consideration in dealing with long-term health risks. Heart disease, diabetes and other chronic disease risk may also be influenced by the type of sugar consumed. Consuming more sucrose than fructose may prove to be beneficial for your health.

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