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Sucrose, Glucose and Metabolism

An appetite study shows that not all sugars are created equal.

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Sucrose and Glucose Metabolism

The sweetness in our diets comes in many different forms, and how we get our sugar fix matters. The type of sweet stuff we choose may influence how hungry we feel and, in turn, affect our risk for metabolic conditions and weight gain. A recent study shed light on the different effects of sucrose and glucose on our metabolism.

Study participants produced lower amounts of hunger-suppressing hormones, such as peptide YY, after sipping drinks sweetened with sucrose (table sugar) than they did after drinking liquids spiked with glucose (naturally occurring sweetness), according to a report in The Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism.

The findings, based on data from 69 men and women ages 18–35, also revealed that participants with obesity and less insulin sensitivity had a lower increase in hunger-suppressing hormones after consuming a sweet beverage. That may be another reason why it’s so hard for people with excess weight to lose it and keep it off.

Sucrose is made up of equal parts glucose and fructose and is often pumped into processed foods like soda, candy and cereal. Glucose occurs naturally in carbohydrate-containing foods like honey and fresh and dried fruits.

See also: Fructose and Glucose Health Hazards




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Matthew Kadey, MS, RD

Matthew Kadey, MS, RD, is a James Beard Award–winning food journalist, dietitian and author of the cookbook Rocket Fuel: Power-Packed Food for Sport + Adventure (VeloPress 2016). He has written for dozens of magazines, including Runner’s World, Men’s Health, Shape, Men’s Fitness and Muscle and Fitness.

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