Public Enemy #1: High Fructose Corn Syrup

#1 on our “Top 10 Ingredients to Avoid” is High Fructose Corn Syrup, a man-made industrial sweetener used in hundreds of grocery store products.

Cheaper to use than sugar, food manufacturers put it in yogurt, breakfast cereals, cookies, crackers, breads, hamburger and hot dog buns, granola bars, pancake syrups, jams and jellies, puddings, ice cream, popsicles, ketchup, mayonnaise, salad dressings, energy drinks, juice drinks, soda pops—even children’s vitamins.

High Fructose Corn Syrup (HFCS) is so industrial you can’t even buy it in a supermarket.

Yet the makers of HFCS have spent more than $50 million in TV advertising trying to convince us that it’s natural. It’s not. It requires multiple complex enzyme processes in order to chemically change the corn first into glucose and then fructose in order to make it sweet enough. The resulting product would never be found in nature.

High Fructose Corn Syrup began showing up in foods in the 1970’s—the same time that the US obesity epidemic began. The average American now consumes over 50 lbs. of the corn sweetener every year. In 2004 researchers reported in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition that the “increased use of HFCS in the United States mirrors the rapid increase in obesity.”

Millions of consumers are now avoiding this ingredient and for good reasons. As well as obesity, multiple studies show the link between consuming foods and beverages that contain HFCS and risk of developing diabetes, heart disease, and other health problems.

There are many alternative to food makers. Natural sweeteners are available, such as cane or beet sugar, honey and agave.

Citizens for Health has started a petition to tell food makers that we don’t want them to use High Fructose Corn Syrup in our foods. Click here to add your name to the petition and tell the CEOs of largest U.S. food manufacturers that you don’t want HFCS in the foods you buy.