Monday, May 14, 2012

Fructose and Your Monkey, 2

Taubes continues with his analysis of the "fructose papers".

The second and third papers under consideration were intervention studies on humans - this is relatively rare due the expense and complications of working with the world's most complex psyche.

If you were overweight and/or obese, 40-70 years old, and got put on a new diet, and were told you were now expending less energy through activity and metabolic action, you were burning less fat, and the only change was that fructose was substituted for glucose - would that concern you?  Calories were the same, and percent of kcal from sugars was the same - but the metabolic impact shifted for the worse after fructose was introduced.  This is a predictable outcome if you believe fructose has the ability to worsen insulin resistance.

The third study shifted focus to humans 18-40 years of age, and not all obese or overweight.  Each of three groups was presented with a sugar sweetened beverage to drink every day, equating to about 25% of their caloric intake.  One group got fructose, one glucose, and one got high fructose corn syrup.  Taubes' summary:
Still, after only 12 days—less than two weeks—subjects in both the HFCS and fructose groups, but not the glucose group, saw a significant increase in heart disease risk. Triglycerides went up; LDL cholesterol went up, and ApoB concentrations, a measure of the number of LDL particles, increased.

Taubes' conclusion:
Well, these three papers certainly support the contention that the sugars consumed in western diets have very specific deleterious metabolic effects, and that maybe these sugars are the, or at least a proximate cause of insulin resistance and metabolic syndrome, and so, we can assume, obesity and type 2 diabetes and perhaps all the other chronic diseases that associate with these two conditions (cancer anyone?).

I highly recommend that you read the article.  The takeaways are many, from the pragmatic;
- if you are not as skinny as you'd like or as healthy as you'd like, get the fructose out of your diet
to the theoretical;
- sure there may be something to palatability, but it doesn't explain why fructose knocks your metabolism on its butt.

If as these papers, and other research, strongly implies, a population that consumes a low fat, high sugar/fructose diet will get high rates of insulin resistance, and the subsequent cascade of the diseases of the west:  first the symptoms that accompany metabolic syndrome (gout, high blood pressure, low HDL, high triglycerides, high fasting glucose, high insulin levels, GERD, abdominal obesity), then diabetes, and along the way the probability of serious illness (cardio vascular disease, cancer, alzheimer's, others) goes higher.

For more on the relationship between cancer and sugar, check this article.

1 comment:

  1. I hope those people who will read this article realize how bad fructose is. Coming from another group of fitness enthusiast. I hope you should start believing. Another article that can help you learn more about fructose and insulin resistance is the one I read from Dr. Mercola's website.