High fructose corn syrup (HFCS) is a corn sweetener that is abundantly found in processed foods of all kinds. When you walk into the grocery store and start looking at labels you will find high fructose corn syrup in almost everything from ketchup to crackers. There have many article and studies about the impacts of HFCS on the health and nutrition of people that consume it regularly. It is clear that the increase in the amount of sweeteners in foods has contributed to the obesity problem in the United States, and HFCS is part of the increase. There has been some inconclusive data that has linked HFCS as being disruptive to the metabolic process of the body causing abdominal weight gain. All the publicity has created a negative impression about the product so abundant in the food supply.
The Corn Refiners Association, which is the organization that represents the interest of companies that make high fructose corn syrup, has launched campaigns in recent years to try to improve the image HFCS. Their most recent decision has been to petition the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to change the name of high fructose corn syrup to corn sugar. The idea is that changing the name to corn sugar will reduce the confusion about the product. Currently almost 60 percent of Americans are concerned about HFCS. The argument for the name change is that HFCS has about the same amount of calories is table sugar and so it is not harmful or a concern for people. Economically the Corn Refiners Association wants to change the image and name because food producers are starting to remove HFCS because of the negative association.
As an advocate for healthy whole foods eating, my concern about high fructose corn syrup or corn sugar is not the name, it is how it affects the body. Too much sugar in any form in the body creates obesity and increases the risk for all chronic diseases, including heart disease, cancer, and diabetes. I think that most of the sweeteners that have been added to processed foods are dangerous, not just HFCS. In order to take back our health we need to focus on fresh whole foods as much as possible.