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Sunday, 30 October 2016

Diabetes opens floodgates to fructose

S.O.T.T: Fructose, once seen as diabetics' alternative to glucose, is fast-tracked to the liver in diabetic mice and contributes to metabolic diseases, according to new research from Harvard University. 

In a study to be published in eLife, scientists discovered that the effect is dependent on a protein that is turned on by diabetes and that then opens the floodgates to fructose in the small intestine. The findings are the result of both short-term and long-term feeding experiments, and they provide a vivid picture of what may be happening after consuming high-fructose food and drink.

The surprise is that diabetic mice absorb more fructose within minutes after it hits the stomach, sending it to the liver where it manufactures fat.

"By building a picture of what happens inside the body when you drink a sugary drink or eat that extra cookie, we might be able to help people to think about the effects and also identify which people could be most vulnerable to excess sugar," says Professor Richard Lee of Harvard, who supervised the study.

"What is a safe amount of sugar for one person could be different from what is safe to another. Our findings suggest that some diabetics might be more susceptible to the damaging effects of fructose because diabetes tunes the body to reach into the intestine and grab more of this type of sugar."

Fructose is a sugar that has found its way into our diets at higher levels via food and drink containing table sugar (which is half fructose) or high-fructose corn syrup. This increase over the last few decades has been associated with several metabolic diseases including obesity, fatty liver disease, hypertension, insulin resistance and Type 2 diabetes. Meanwhile, there is no evidence that fructose from unprocessed fruit is a health risk...read more>>>...