Harmful effects of fructose sugars on blood glucose seem to be mediated by energy and food source, warns a review
When fructose is consumed in its natural state (as a fruit), it does not significantly change blood glucose levels. Credit: Getty Images/CSE
A recent review published by the British Medical Journal claims that sweetened drinks which contain added sugars and substances that have nutrient poor energy or empty calories are more likely to cause type 2 diabetes as compared to sugary foods.
Researchers from St. Michael’s College under the University of Toronto in Canada analysed the results of 155 studies that assessed the effect of fructose from difference sources on blood glucose levels in people with and without diabetes. They monitored them for up to 12 weeks and found that when fructose is consumed in its natural state (as a fruit), it does not significantly change blood glucose levels. But sweetened beverages, especially those that contain high fructose corn syrup, had the tendency to alter the level of blood glucose, said the review.
The low glycaemic index (GI) of fructose compared with other carbohydrates, and higher fibre content of fruit, may help explain the improvements in blood glucose levels, says the review. The researchers said in a statement that foods containing fructose along with a nutrient poor additional energy substance can be cause for type 2 diabetes.
They added, “Until more information is available, public health professionals should be aware that harmful effects of fructose sugars on blood glucose seem to be mediated by energy and food source.”
This review can help policymakers to come up with strategies to cut down the consumption of sugary drinks for public health concerns.
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