Although mainstream ‘consensus’ suggest that cholesterol and saturated fat are the cause of cardiovascular disease, scientific evidence does not support this viewpoint. In fact, data collected to date implicates fructose as a main causative factor in cardiovascular disease. Because fructose is present in sugar and high fructose corn syrup, intakes of fructose mirror the increases in soft drink consumption seen in recent decades in Western nations.
The metabolic syndrome is a group of related disorders that include insulin resistance, fatty liver, abdominal fat and weight gain. The metabolic syndrome is a risk factor for cardiovascular disease. Fructose is implicated as a cause of cardiovascular disease because high intakes of fructose particularly in the absence of fibre, are a driver of metabolic syndrome. In this regard soft drinks, cakes and other sugar containing foods cause metabolic dysfunction.
Fructose Raises Triglyceride Levels
Fructose is also able to cause elevations in plasma triglycerides. This is because fructose when eaten in high concentrations overloads the liver with energy. This energy is sent for processing down the de novo lipogenesis pathway and results in the formation of fatty acids. These fatty acids are packaged into very low density lipoproteins where they enter circulation. When measured clinically, these lipoproteins are referred to as triglycerides.
Fructose And Abdominal Obesity
Overloading the liver with fructose has other negative effects. In particular some of the triglycerides and fatty acids produced as a result of de novo lipogenesis end up being deposited in the liver. This causes non-alcoholic fatty liver disease which is very similar to alcoholic fatty liver disease. Triglycerides also become deposited around the visceral organs and this results in abdominal obesity, or belly fat.
Sugar And Cardiovascular Disease
In populations where sugar is not present, cardiovascular disease does not occur. Plenty of populations around the world eat both cholesterol and saturated fat, but if sugar is not present in these diets cardiovascular disease is not present in the population. Introduction of refined carbohydrates including sugar, is however historically recorded to increase Western disease such as cardiovascular disease within just a few years.