‘Health claim’ for fructose to be allowed in the EU

The European Union (PDF, 1MB) has ruled that food and drinks manufacturers can include a ‘health claim’ that their sweetened products are ‘healthier’ than alternatives if they replace more than 30% of the sucrose or glucose content with high fructose corn syrup. 

The European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) advised this decision on the grounds that fructose has a lower glycaemic index than both sucrose and glucose and so does not cause as rapid or high a blood sugar spike.

This decision has led to concern among health professionals as fructose is metabolised differently to other sugars in the body when consumed in large amounts. It goes straight to the liver leading to fat deposits there and can increase triglycerides in the blood. High fructose corn syrup has also been linked to high obesity rates in the United States (US) and is believed to be the reason that obesity has risen faster in the US than elsewhere in the world.

This ‘health claim’ will likely confuse consumers, leading to the view that these products are ‘healthy’ or ‘less fattening’. Health professionals feel these claims have no public health benefit and could add to the obesity epidemic – an issue that every country in the world is now experiencing.

Resources:

'Healthy' foods may put on more weight

Posted: 21/10/2013 10:56:47 by Laura Keaver


 

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