Foods made with the industrially manufactured sweetener fructose not only leave you feeling less satisfied, but may actually stimulate additional food cravings that can lead to overeating, new research suggests.
Fructose, added to sodas and processed foods, stimulates the reward system in the brain less than sugar, which can cause “excessive consumption accompanied by effects that are a risk to health,” say researchers from the University of Basel.
"The study may provide the first key findings about the lack of satiety and rewarding effects triggered by fructose," said lead researchers Bettina Wölnerhanssen and Anne Christin Meyer-Gerspach.
They said the research adds to past studies that have found commercial fructose — used in sugary drinks, sweets, and prepared meals — is problematic for the human body. It has been linked to various disorders such as obesity, diabetes, fatty liver disease, and gout.
For the study, published in the Public library of science journal PLOS ONE, the investigators tracked 12 healthy young men were given either fructose, glucose (a natural sugar), or a placebo through a feeding tube.
The results showed that fructose was less effective than glucose at creating feelings of satiety and stimulating the reward system in the brain.
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