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Researcher and author Dr. Richard J. Johnson has looked into the role fructose plays in many modern disease epidemics. He discusses this by describing. 

  • what fructose can do to help some animals survive harsh conditions,
  • how those assets turn into dangers in our modern world of plenty, and
  • what alternatives we might use to ease the cravings and replace fructose in our daily diet.

 

Dr. Richard J. Johnson is a professor of medicine at the University of Colorado. He researches how fructose causes diseases like hypertension, kidney disease, and obesity and diabetes. He’s written two books about this epidemic—The Fat Switch and The Sugar Fix—and has written numerous papers on fructose as well. 

Dr. Johnson discusses the role fructose plays in the excessive obesity and diabetes rates in our society. He talks about how hard to avoid, from an ingredient in table sugar to the ubiquitous high fructose corn syrup, an easy addition for manufactures looking for something cheap and appealing to put in processed foods. He also explains why it is so dangerous by first explaining it evolutionary role.

Dr. Johnson discusses how it can be helpful to animal systems in dire survival mode. He uses an analogy to explain its function, commenting that it’s akin to an alarm system for our body: it sends a signal to our system that we’re in trouble .In order to protect ourselves, we become insulin resistant to guard our brain and increase inflammation to protect our physiology. Of course these measures completely undermine our health in times of plenty and increase risks for obesity and diabetes.

He finishes the discussion with suggestions for ways to ween ourselves, from more effective ways to eat fruits to what alternatives to fructose are best. 

For more, find his papers in pub med, his books and, see his lab web site at https://physiology.case.edu/person/richard-j-johnson/

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