Monday, September 20, 2010

Corn Refiners Association

It seems like there has been a lot of scrutiny against sugars lately--and one that comes to mind immediately is HFCS (High Fructose Corn Syrup). Have you heard of HFCS? If so, what is your thought or what are your thoughts? Have you been researching it?

I ask this because as a parent I find it very important to be knowledgeable about what our children are consuming. It's not a secret that our country has an obesity problem. I constantly see headlines about sugar foods and where they come from has been under a lot of pressure lately. But the key to all of this is how much sugar we're consuming--not the origin. It's our consumption amount that is so high.

I grabbed a few items from my pantry: a box of cereal (an unsweetened, non-sugary coated), a box of muffin mix and a jar of creamy peanut butter, marinara sauce and ketchup.

For the box of cereal I found that there were 4 gm per serving. Not as low as I had thought originally, but okay. My peanut butter for one serving had 3 gm. I thought for sure my peanut butter would be higher than my healthy cereal choice. And then for the muffins. Growing up I assumed muffins were healthy--well, in my opinion now I call them a breakfast cake. Anyway, they have a whopping 14 gm per serving! The marinara sauce contains 7 gm per serving and finally the ketchup contains 4gm in a serving--so it looks like my peanut butter was the winner in the lowest amount of sugar per serving--definitely not what I had thought would win!

When preparing meals and reading the ingredients, be on a lookout for words that don't come out and say "sugar". There are a lot of different words that could mean sugar such as agave, stevia, dextrose, fructose, glucose, lactose, maltose, sucrose--and many more. Just remember to read your labels to know what you are consuming and what you are feeding your family.

I also have found out some interesting science based facts about HFCS:

  • Studies conducted with abnormally high levels of pure fructose have been inappropriately applied to high fructose corn syrups. HFCS and table sugar are equally sweet, contain the same amount of calories and are handled similarly by the body.
  • Calories: Both HFCS and sucrose contain the same amount of calories (which is 4 cal per gram) equal parts fructose and glucose. Once absorbed into our bloodstream, the two sugars are indistinguishable. American Dietetic Association, Hot Topics Paper on HFCS, Dec 2008
  • Read the complete pages of facts on high fructose corn syrup to see what the professionals are saying on this sugar that has grabbed a lot of media attention.

Want to see how your foods stack up? Be sure to check out It's a neat site to visit and I recommend that all of my readers check it out!

I wrote this review while participating in a blog tour campaign by Mom Central on behalf of the Corn Refiners Association. I received a gift certificate to thank me for taking the time to participate.

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