Here's interesting news for those of us who are trying to cut down on sugar, and have a hope, perhaps, that substituting more "natural" sweeteners like honey will be a healthier fix for our sweet tooth. Science says, not so fast. A new study shows very little, if any, difference between honey and high-fructose sweeteners.
And before you cock an eyebrow, dubious as to whether this is one more study funded by Big Sugar, know that this research by the USDA was actually partially funded by the National Honey Board.
The goal of this small study was to see how three types of sweeteners affected test subjects:
The researchers gave subjects daily doses of each of three sweeteners — honey, cane sugar, and high-fructose corn sweetener — for two weeks at a time. They then compared measures of blood sugar, insulin, body weight, cholesterol, and blood pressure in the 55 subjects.
The researchers found that the three sweeteners basically have the same impacts. Most measures were unchanged by the sweeteners. One measure of a key blood fat, a marker for heart disease, rose with all three.
It's an interesting case that pits the perception of "natural" against the actual chemical makeup of these sweeteners, which are actually chemically "very, very similar," as one of the researchers says.
→ Read more: Honey isn’t as healthy as we think from The Washington Post