Fructose is a type of sugar which is the main component of added sugar. Some health researchers believe that fructose sugar is harmful to health. Is it true? Actually what is fructose? See the explanation here.
What is fructose?
Fructose is a type of simple carbohydrate (sugar) contained in table sugar. Besides fructose, the table sugar you use daily contains glucose, which is a source of energy in the body.
Apart from being contained in table sugar that we use everyday, fructose is actually also contained in fruits. Yes, fructose sugar is a natural sugar from fruit that is not too much, so it is safe for health.
Fructose can also be found in various sweeteners such as high fructose corn syrup and agave syrup. If a product includes added sugar as one of the main ingredients, usually the product contains high fructose.
Some people don't absorb all the fructose eaten. This condition is known as fructose malabsorption, which is characterized by excessive gas and indigestion.
Unlike glucose, fructose causes low blood sugar levels. Therefore, some health experts recommend fructose as a sweetener that can be said to be safe for type 2 diabetes patients.
However, many people worry that excessive fructose intake can increase the risk of some metabolic disorders. Is that right?
Why is fructose sugar dangerous for health?
Glucose and fructose are digested and absorbed in a very different way by the body. While every cell in the body can use glucose, this does not apply to fructose.
When you consume table sugar or other sweet foods, your body will easily digest glucose contained in it to be used as energy. Meanwhile, fructose which is also present in sweet foods can only be broken down and digested by the liver. The final results of the digestive process are triglycerides, uric acid, and some free radical substances.
If too much fructose sugar is consumed, triglycerides will accumulate in the liver and eventually damage the function of the organ. In addition, triglycerides can also trigger the emergence of plaques in blood vessels that can cause heart disease.
Free radicals produced from the breakdown of fructose can also damage cell structures, enzymes, and even genes. Gout can kill the production of nitric oxide, a substance that helps protect arterial walls from damage. Other effects of high fructose intake are insulin resistance, a precursor to diabetes.
However, more research is still needed in humans. Researchers are still debating the extent to which fructose can affect some of these health problems.
Excess fructose sugar is harmful to health
Consuming excessive fructose is certainly not healthy for your health, although the effect is still often debated.
Some effects that might occur if the excess consumption of fructose includes:
- Destroy your blood lipid composition. Fructose can increase levels of bad cholesterol (LDL), causing fat accumulation around the organs and potentially heart disease.
- Increases uric acid levels in the blood, which causes gout and high blood pressure.
- Causes of fat deposition in the liver, potentially causing non-alcoholic fatty liver disease.
- Causes insulin resistance, which can cause obesity and type 2 diabetes.
- Fructose does not suppress appetite like glucose. So that it might increase excessive appetite.
- Excessive fructose consumption can cause leptin resistance, interfere with regulation of body fat and increase the risk of obesity.
- Safe Fruits and Vegetables for Children with Fructose Intolerance
- Difference in Glucose and Fructose, Two Types of Sugar with Different Benefits
- Which one has more sugar content: Fresh fruit or dried fruit?