Glucose More Filling than Fructose, Study Finds

Published Online: Thursday, February 14, 2013
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Fructose does not make individuals feel as full as glucose and may cause them to eat more, according to a study published in the January 2, 2013, issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.

Researchers at Yale University found that fructose and glucose have different effects on the brain. Twenty normal-weight young adults were given either a pure fructose or pure glucose drink. Using a magnetic resonance imaging technique, the researchers measured blood flow in the hypothalamic region of the brain before and after participants consumed the sugar drinks.

The researchers found that participants who consumed glucose had high levels of the hormones that cause feelings of satiety. However, those who consumed fructose had a smaller increase of the same hormones. The researchers suggest that the findings support the idea that fructose affects appetite regulation and leads to overeating.

Although fructose is found naturally in fruit, the researchers believe that fructose that is added to many processed foods may be a key contributor to the obesity epidemic. More research is needed to determine the specific connections between fructose, brain reaction, and obesity.

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