Why Are Foods High in Fructose Corn Syrup So Popular?

It's no secret that foods high in fructose corn syrup are dangerous for your health. In fact, studies show links to serious potential side effects, such as type 2 diabetes and heart disease!

But with all the information out there, people aren't backing away from this ingredient. Approximately one-third of adults admit to having at least one sugary drink each day. These drinks are a primary source of high-fructose corn syrup in the average diet.

Why do people keep coming back to foods high in fructose? Keep reading to learn how addictive this ingredient is. You might even learn some instances where you are unknowingly consuming extra high fructose corn syrup.

Examples of Foods High in Fructose Corn Syrup

High fructose corn syrup is a cheap sweetener derived from cornstarch.

Enzymes are added to corn syrup to change the glucose into another simple sugar. This simple sugar is called fructose. The enzymes have been genetically modified to improve their heat stability. This makes the production of high fructose corn syrup easier.

This sweetener is often compared to table sugar. High fructose corn syrup is found in various foods and beverages you see in the supermarket today, such as:

  • Cereals
  • Processed foods
  • Cookies
  • Sodas
  • Jellies and jams
  • Yogurt

Yogurt with lots of sugarChocolate Chip Cookies

But even some foods that you'd believe to be healthy might contain high fructose corn syrup. For example, fruits canned in heavy syrup, like peaches or pineapple, often contain the ingredient.

Some people may think they're making a healthy choice are surprised to find high fructose corn syrup in the ingredient list.

The Dangers of High Fructose Corn Syrup

If this ingredient is in so many foods, you might be thinking, "It can't be bad for me!" But so many studies show that foods high in fructose corn syrup are dangerous for our health. Here are a few disturbing facts about high fructose corn syrup: 

  • HFCS can increase the risk of developing high blood pressure, diabetes, and heart disease
  • HFCS can cause leaky gut syndrome
  • HFCS contains up to 570 micrograms of mercury per gram
  • HFCS has been shown to promote cancer

Other harmful side effects include an increased risk of obesity and increased cholesterol levels. It does the same thing to your body as regular table sugar. 

Even with these devastating side effects, people continue to consume more foods high in fructose corn syrup. Why?

Cheeseburger with fries and unhealthy ketchup with high fructose corn syrup

Why People Continue to Eat Foods High in Fructose

Americans consume an average of 50 grams of high fructose corn syrup every day. Why is this ingredient so popular? Here are a few reasons people continue to consume foods high in fructose corn syrup.

It's Everywhere

High fructose corn syrup is derived from cheap industrial corn, an abundant crop in America. You can find this ingredient in every aisle of the grocery store.

Every item of a fast food meal is also likely to contain HFCS. From your soda and the corn-fed beef in a double-cheeseburger to the sugary condiments and the bun - high fructose corn syrup is everywhere.

It's Cheaper

High fructose corn syrup is actually cheaper than granulated sugar in America. The government pays subsidies to farmers for corn.

Many products made with this ingredient are going to be more affordable than foods made with whole, natural ingredients. Fast food is also a cheap option.

These Foods Last Longer

High fructose corn syrup extends the life of processed foods. A long shelf life is typically appealing to consumers. Yet, the healthier, fresh foods are the ones that go bad quickly. 


Foods high in fructose corn syrup are often more convenient than lugging around fresh food. Think about it. You can take a granola bar anywhere without a mess. Soda is readily available, and fast-food restaurants are everywhere.

With these processed foods being so affordable and boasting a long shelf life, people love the convenience of them.

It's Addictive

Studies show that foods that are high in fructose corn syrup can cause reactions similar to those to cocaine.

In a study measuring rats' reaction to high levels of high fructose corn syrup, it was found that there's an addictive quality to the ingredient.

More research from Princeton University found that rats fed on a sugary diet became nervous and anxious when the sugar was removed.

The rats were thrown into a state of anxiety. It was similar to the level of stress that people experience when going through withdrawal from drugs like nicotine and morphine.

It's Pleasurable

The sweet taste of foods that are high in fructose corn syrup adds to the addictive quality. Like cigarettes or alcohol, eating sugar gives you an immediate high. This momentary bliss can take over your brain.

It Makes People Hungrier

Fructose is a weaker suppressor of brain areas that help control appetite and the motivation to eat. This means that people still feel hungry after consuming foods with a high fructose content. Therefore, they may continue to eat more of the food to fill up. 

More research shows that when compared with glucose consumption, consuming fructose produces a smaller release of insulin.

Insulin is the hormone that gives us a sense of being full. Glucose better curbs hunger by slowing down activity in the area of the brain associated with being full.

Avoid Foods High in Fructose Corn Syrup

Limiting consumption of high fructose corn syrup can be difficult when these foods are easily available, affordable, and literally addictive.

Be sure to read the ingredient list on any food product before you buy it. 

Consider healthier alternatives for your everyday foods. Many companies will have products without high fructose corn syrup and less sugar. Making your own foods will help you reduce sugar consumption as well.

Condiments are among the most common foods that contain high fructose corn syrup. Let's face it, we put condiments on everything! With all of the dangers of high fructose corn syrup, it's time to replace those items with condiments you can trust.

Try our Organic Ketchup for a healthier alternative! Take small steps toward better health by replacing those toxic items in your pantry one by one.

We also have a new variety that has no added sugar, it is sweetened naturally and is absolutely delicous!  Give it a try.

Ketchup with no added sugar