Contact: Audrae Erickson
Weber Shandwick Worldwide
Pure fructose frequently confused with high fructose corn syrup
New studies, ongoing misunderstanding can lead to consumer confusion
WASHINGTON, DC – As researchers continue to examine the role of sweeteners in the diet, it's
important that people understand the differences among various ingredients used in scientific studies,
according to the Corn Refiners Association (CRA). Interchanging two distinctly different ingredients, such
as pure fructose and high fructose corn syrup, creates factually incorrect conclusions and misleads
studies using pure fructose that purport to show that the body
processes high fructose corn syrup differently than other sugars due to
fructose content are a classic example of this problem because pure
fructose cannot be extrapolated to high fructose corn syrup. The
abnormally high levels of pure fructose used in these studies are not
found in the human diet.
Fructose consumption at normal human dietary levels and as part of a balanced diet has not been shown
to yield such results. Moreover, human fructose intake is nearly always accompanied by the
simultaneous and equivalent intake of glucose – a critical and distinguishing factor from pure fructose used in these studies.
Following are some facts about high fructose corn syrup and fructose:
High fructose corn syrup contains approximately equal ratios of fructose and glucose. Table
sugar also contains equal ratios of fructose and glucose. High fructose corn syrup and sugar are
equally sweet and both contain four calories per gram.
Fructose is a natural, simple sugar commonly found in
fruits and honey. The absence of glucose makes pure fructose
fundamentally different from high fructose corn syrup.
Common dietary sources of fructose and glucose include fruits, vegetables, nuts and sweeteners
(sugar, honey, high fructose corn syrup, fruit juice concentrates and agave nectar).
There is no meaningful difference in how the body
metabolizes table sugar and high fructose corn syrup. Once the
combination of glucose and fructose found in high fructose corn syrup
and sucrose are absorbed into the blood stream, the two types of
sweetener appear to be metabolized similarly using well-characterized
High fructose corn syrup meets the U.S. Food and Drug
Administration's requirements for use of the term "natural." It is made
from corn, a natural grain product and contains no artificial or
synthetic ingredients or color additives.
The American Medical Association in June 2008 helped put to rest a common misunderstanding about
high fructose corn syrup and obesity, stating that "high fructose syrup does not appear to contribute to
obesity more than other caloric sweeteners." Even former critics of high fructose corn syrup dispelled
long-held myths and distanced themselves from earlier speculation about the sweetener's link to
obesity in a comprehensive scientific review published in a recent supplement of the
American Journal of Clinical Nutrition (2008 Vol. 88).
Learn more about the latest research and facts about sweeteners, including high fructose corn syrup, by visiting www.SweetSurprise.com.
Editor's Note: Interviews available with health and industry experts available.
is the national trade association representing the corn refining (wet
milling) industry of the United States. CRA and its predecessors have
served this important segment of American agribusiness since 1913. Corn
refiners manufacture sweeteners, ethanol, starch, bioproducts, corn
oil, and feed products from corn components such as starch, oil,
protein, and fiber.