WHAT IS FRUCTOSE, GLUCOSE, SACCHAROSE? (AREN’T THESE BUILDING BLOCKS OF EVERY SUGAR?)

The true unnatural thing is not this, but maintaining the competition on baseless health claims. It is confusing people because of no reason. It is leading to panic and unnecessary suspicion.

Fructose, because of its name, this sugar or syrup is believed to be composed solely of fructose. This is the first misconception that causes confusion. In fact, beet sugar, cane sugar and corn sugar are mainly composed of glucose and fructose mixture. However, glucose and fructose are compounds in beet sugar while they are decomposed in corn syrup. The fructose/glucose ratio is about the same in both sugars. This ratio, which is 50/50 in beet sugar, is either 44/56 or 57/43 in corn sugar, depending on the type. The fructose/glucose ratio in honey is about 54/46. Fructose and glucose are naturally found together in fruits. For example, the percentage of fructose/glucose is about 5/5 in bananas, 8/7 in grapes, 6/3 in apples, 2/2 in peaches, and 5/12 in apricots. One of the allegations is that “the fructose is a foreign matter for the body”. This is contrary to the facts because it is not possible for the human body to unknow fructose, which has been consumed from the beginning of humanity without knowing its scientific name since mankind has been always consuming fruits.

Another allegation is that “high fructose starch sugar does not stimulate insulin secretion and therefore, causes diabetes”. It is known that this claim does not apply at least to foods that contain fructose and glucose together and most of the foods naturally contain fructose and glucose together. This phenomenon also applies to beets and corn sugar.

The third allegation is that “fructose is a factor of overweight or obesity”. Probably everyone already knows that obesity is mainly caused by the difference between energy intake from foods and energy expenditure by individuals. In other words, the two main causes of obesity are excessive food consumption and lack of physical activity. In this sense, it is not so important from which food the energy is taken. Moreover, the energy values of sugars are the same. 1 gram of each sugar gives 4.1 kcal. Fructose, glucose or lactose at the same weight provide the same amount of energy as the saccharose. Then, if fructose is the cause of obesity; saccharose should be so. Nor, if fructose syrup causes obesity, then, the beet sugar at the same amount should also cause obesity. If obesity was related to fructose, then, the obesity rate should have not increased in the USA while the fructose consumption decreasing!.. It is well-known that sugars, like other foods, do not cause obesity when taken in moderation.

The fourth allegation is that “there is a relationship between fructose and pancreatic cancer”. Studies on the possible relationship of not only fructose but also saccharose, glucose and lactose with pancreatic cancer are contradictory. In fact, there shouldn’t be a direct relationship since according to IACR, sugars (namely; fructose, glucose, saccharose, corn sugar and beet sugar) are not “carcinogenic”. Moreover, experts in this field emphasize that the main factors that increase the risk of developing pancreatic cancer are obesity and diabetes. Therefore, obesity and diabetes should be avoided. More precisely, all of the factors, that led to it, should be avoided.

Beet sugar or corn sugar is not banned for health in any country. The quotas that determine the market share of different sugars are not related to food safety. The purpose of the quota is not to “protect consumers from the harm of another sugar”, but to protect farmers economically. When this knowledge is omitted, people can easily be led into confusion by these sugars. Although there is a quota; the competition between beet sugar, corn sugar and artificial sweeteners is still there while it is natural for each segment to take their own position in this competition. The true unnatural thing is not this, but maintaining the competition on baseless health claims. It is confusing people because of no reason. It is leading to panic and unnecessary suspicion. It is discussing fructose and saccharose rather than artificial sweeteners. The primary goal of this discussion is not protecting human health. Scientific research has not verified the claims regarding fructose, saccharose and other sugars as well as the expert organizations such as WHO, EFSA and FDA. There is no country implementing bans for fructose or saccharose for health concerns.

News Reporter