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Fructose in Your Sugary Sodas, and Juices

pouring cola into glassRecent years have seen a lot of attention paid to the possible harms of high fructose corn syrup (HFCS), an inexpensive sugar found in many sugary sodas and other prepared sweets. HFCS in general contains more of the sugar fructose than sucrose; it is also a natural sugar found in fruit and fruit juice. And some research suggests that different types of sugars like fructose contribute to weight gain and metabolic health risks more than other sugars.

A recent study published in the journal Nutrition, now suggests that many sugary beverages Americans are drinking –  whether it’s soda or apple juice — actually contain similar amounts of fructose. This could be important to scientists studying sugars and health risks.

For their study, the researchers analyzed the sugar concentrations of the most popular sodas, 100% fruit juices, and juice drinks, including sports drinks. The study found that fructose levels among some HFCS drinks are often higher than a commonly used database researchers use.

One of AICR’s Recommendations for Cancer Prevention is to avoid sugary drinks because they link to weight gain and obesity. Sip for sip, regular sodas and natural fruit juice contain about the same calories and both are high in sugar. But juices provide nutritional value and sodas have none.

The study was funded by a grant from the National Institutes of Health.

Source: Ryan W. Walker et al. “Fructose content in popular beverages made with and without high fructose corn syrup.” Nutrition. published online 18 April 2014.

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