Harmful high fructose corn syrup gets a new name
Big Food is at it again, fooling us with false advertisements to make us buy food we don’t want to consume. Most of today’s consumers are increasingly health conscious and want to avoid products that contain health-damaging ingredients. High fructose corn syrup (HFCS) is one of the substances that has made a bad name for itself.
This questionable sweetener which is much cheaper than regular sugar, and extends the shelf life of processed products – has been linked to many health problems such as heart disease, obesity, dementia, diabetes, cancer and liver failure. For this reason, many consumers have begun to check food labels and steer away from foods containing HFCS.
But manufacturers have come up with a sneaky way to fool their customers so that they don’t have to change their money-making ways. Instead of removing this cheap, harmful ingredient, they have just changed its name on packaging to conceal it within their products. FDA decided in 1997 that food companies could review their own products and determine if they were safe or not. This self-regulatory system legally enables food companies to put profits above safety.
Now they succeeded in changing the name of a form of HFCS called HFCS-90 to fructose or fructose syrup. Since fructose makes up the sugar content in fresh fruits, it sounds much healthier than HFCS, however, when we consume fructose in fruits, we consume it along with fiber, enzymes, minerals and vitamins.
The toxic ingredient now called fructose, or fructose syrup, contains even higher concentrations of harmful HFCS, making it more of a health risk than regular HFCS. Regular HFCS (HFCS-42 or HFCS-55) contains either 42 or 55 percent fructose, while HFCS-90 contains 90 percent. Even though multiple scientific studies add to a growing body of evidence that indicates HFCS consumption may result in negative health consequences when compared to natural sugar, high concentrations of HFCS are still allowed in our food chain.
Here are a few other deceptive names of HFCS that you should look out for: maize syrup, glucose syrup, glucose/fructose syrup, tapioca syrup, fruit fructose and crystalline fructose.