This is Public Health

We all know what sugar is – that thing some of us crave, others add to morning coffee and still others avoid like the plague. However you identify the sugars you eat daily, we should all understand the basic differences between Fructose and Sucrose sugars.

Fructose is found mainly in fruits and honey.  It can also be found in high fructose corn syrup, but not regular corn syrup.  Regular corn syrup contains mostly maltrose (malt sugar) with various levels of other types of sugars, including fructose and glucose.  Fructose should not be confused with either high fructose corn syrup or with regular corn syrup, since it is a “naturally” occurring sugar that doesn’t need a lot of chemical processing to be extracted from fruits and honey.

Sucrose is the sugar that’s found in many different types of plants world-wide.  It is the most easily obtained sugar just by doing something as simple as eating a carrot.  The sucrose that a person uses as a sweetener in baking and other food making processes is usually extracted almost exclusively from sugar cane and sugar beets.

Check out the full article for greater detail.

Certain “super foods,” as they’ve come to be labeled, have shown lots of promise when it comes to their nutritional value and weight loss. When included in healthy diet and exercise routines, these foods can help boost energy, metabolism and help drop a few lbs in the process.

Check out CNN’s recent article about these foods to find out more.

diabetes

A global health study published on June 27th found that the number of adults with either type 1 or type 2 diabetes worldwide has more than doubled from 153 million in 1980 to 347 million in 2011. The incidence rate was found to be twice as fast in the United States as it was in Europe. However, this increasingly prevalent disease continues to be misunderstood and stigmatized, making early diagnosis more difficult. The American Diabetes Association (ADA) found that many Americans do not know that diabetes causes more deaths than breast cancer and HIV/AIDS combined, that eating too much sugar or weighing too much are not the only risk factors, and that children can be diagnosed with type 2 diabetes. Learn more about modern day diabetes and its early symptoms.

soda-fat

According to  the Beverage Marketing Corporation, the average American consumes 44.7 gallons of soda per year, which amounts to about one or two cans of soda each day. That’s the equivalent of 39 pounds of sugar in one year, which significantly increases the risk of type 2 diabetes and obesity in adults and drives the risk of childhood obesity up to 60%. Making better drink choices, like jazzing up water with a splash of fruit juice, choosing diet beverages, or drinking unsweetened iced tea could help reduce the risk of weight gain and chronic disease. It’s also important to note that fruit juices, lemonade and sports drinks may be perceived as healthy alternatives to soda but can contain just as many calories and sugar. So, don’t forget to read nutrition labels. Click here for more tips on rethinking your drink.

sugar-cubes

Robert Lustig, MD, a leading expert on childhood obesity at the University of California San Francisco (UCSF), is quickly gaining recognition for his recent lecture on sugar in the Western diet. Dr. Lustig argues that too much fructose may be one of the cornerstones of the obesity epidemic in the U.S. Read more about why Lustig believes sugar should be viewed similarly to cigarettes and alcohol than a common childhood treat, or watch his video lecture on Youtube.

diabetes

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), over the past two decades, the number of Americans living with diabetes has quadrupled to an estimated 24 million. When it comes to type 2 diabetes, the most common type of diabetes, prevention is possible. Making a few simple preventive lifestyle changes now, such as healthier diet consisting of more vegetables, fruit and whole grains and increased physical activity, can help ward off diabetes in the future. The Mayo Clinic website offers these diabetes prevention tips from the American Diabetes Association.

fatrat1

A study conducted by the Princeton Neuroscience Institute finds that consumption of high-fructose corn syrup is leading to considerable weight gain and signs of obesity, including high cholesterol, high blood pressure, cancer and diabetes in lab rats. Read more about the study.