Last week Janie and I were minding our own business, watching Russell Brand host the VMA’s and call the president a retarded cowboy. During a commercial break we quietly watched the following ad:
Janie was leaned up against me, as she is wont to do all the time so get off me already, woman! and she sat straight up, looking incredulously at the screen and said: “Did that commercial just say that high fructose corn syrup was good for you!? Did that commercial just say that high fructose corn syrup was good for you!? Did that commercial just say that high fructose corn syrup was good for you!?” That is not a duplication error, she really did say it over and over again, each time with more panic. I nodded my head, quickly flashing in my mind to that mini medical school seminar that I attended two years ago when the nephrologist stepped up to present on how we can take good care of our kidneys and the severe danger in damaging or disabling them. He spent a significant amount of time on the hazards of high fructose corn syrup and I came away knowing that the sweet surprise this commercial promises is a rotting kidney that will lessen my life-span by a significant number of years.
From the Mayo Clinic: “Animal studies have shown a link between increased consumption of high-fructose corn syrup and adverse health effects, such as diabetes and high cholesterol.”
There are many studies being done on HFCS and the potential damage it does to the body. I know there is little concrete scientific data to tell me that if I put this into my body, it’ll affect my health negatively. I know the Corn Refiners Association wants me to believe that their product is natural and pretty like butterflies and rainbows, but when a nephrologist spends 20 minutes telling an audience that it is a danger to your kidneys and that your kidney function has a serious effect on your lifespan, well, I’m more inclined to believe the doctor than big business.
The bad news is that HFCS is everywhere these days. When Janie was first diagnosed with Celiac Disease, she was also told she had a corn intolerance and this made it very difficult for me to hold my shit together because corn is, in some form, in everything: adhesives (glues, pastes, mucilages, gums, etc.), Antibiotics (penicillin), Aspirin, baby food,B breakfast cereals, candies, canned vegetables, carbonated beverages, chewing gum, Dextrose (intravenous solutions, icing sugar), oils, fructose, Instant coffee and tea, instant coffee and tea, ketchup, mayonnaise, mustard, peanut butter, potato chips, salad dressings, soft drinks, starches, syrups, toothpaste, whiskey, yogurts, etc. You can’t escape it unless you eat all fresh and natural products, or shop at stores like PCC which has banned high fructose corn syrup from its shelves.
I’m sure that this alarmist view is on par with how saccharin will give you cancer if you eat a dump truck load each week. It seems like the best way to go is to eat a dump truck of sugar, the more natural choice. But even sugar is refined out of its mind until it’s nothing but a bunch of naked little calories running amok in your body, trying to find a home where it will suck you dry, like an episode of the Tyra Banks Show.
In conclusion, that commercial was total bullshit.