CAT | Diet and Nutrition
Have you checked the labels in your pantry lately? Chances are more than a few include high-fructose corn syrup (not to mention the fridge, where soda and sports drinks are among the biggest culprits). In 2015 it’s time to say enough is enough, especially since yet another study has revealed the hidden dangers of HFCS.
Using mice, researchers from the University of Utah recently examined the effects of a diet high in HFCS—and the results may be a red flag for millions of Americans. According to lead author Wayne Potts, the fructose-glucose mix found in HFCS is significantly more toxic than sucrose (table sugar) and may pose a significant health risk. Unlike sucrose, HFCS is absorbed more quickly (due to the extra fructose), and the fructose travels directly to the liver where it contributes to a number of metabolic imbalances such as increased triglycerides and insulin resistance.
Potts and his team analyzed two groups of mice, each receiving one-quarter of their calories from either HFCS or sucrose—an amount similar to human consumption. Those in the HFCS group saw reduced reproduction (specifically 26.4% fewer offspring) as well as higher death rates among females.
“This is the most robust study showing there is a difference between high-fructose corn syrup and table sugar at human-relevant doses,” said Potts. The team points out the link between the introduction of HFCS into the American diet in the 1970s and the corresponding rise in obesity and diabetes. Their advice? Reduce added sugars in the diet and avoid products made with HFCS—an excellent health goal for the new year!
Does it seem like January is just zipping by? How are those 2015 health resolutions coming along? Have you been eating more fiber? Cutting back on sugary soft drinks? Cooking more meals at home? Good for you! Now let’s talk probiotics.
Probiotics are the beneficial bacteria that occur naturally in the digestive tract, where they promote a balanced internal environment to support digestive and immune health.‡ Because up to 80% of the immune system is found in the gut, having a healthy balance of bacteria there—meaning more good and neutral than harmful bacteria—is important for optimal health.‡ However, factors such as poor diet, stress, age, and certain medications can deplete your numbers of good bacteria and lead to digestive upsets and poor health.
If you haven’t yet discovered the benefits of taking a daily probiotic supplement, now is the perfect time do so. During the winter months and throughout the year, probiotics can offer a wide range of benefits.‡ Here are just a few!
- Help restore digestive balance‡
- Relieve occasional digestive discomfort‡
- Support immune health‡
- Promote bowel health and regularity‡
- Support a healthy yeast balance in women‡
- Replenish healthy gut bacteria‡
Ready to power up with probiotics?‡ Click here to watch a helpful video about the 6 Rules of Probiotics and for helpful advice on choosing the right probiotic supplement for you and your family.