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Vitals

August 24, 1998

Hey, sugar! Don't know your fructose from your glucose from your sucrose? Read on:

Fructose: A monosaccharide, or single sugar. In nature, it combines with glucose to form sucrose. About 1 1/2 times sweeter than sucrose. Fruits and vegetables naturally contain fructose.

Glucose: A monosaccharide. In nature, it combines with fructose to form sucrose. The body can make its own glucose or get it from foods. Fruits and veggies naturally contain glucose.

Sucrose: A disaccharide, or double sugar, made of equal parts glucose and fructose. Known as table or white sugar, sucrose is found naturally in sugar cane and sugar beets. It comes from these foods for commercial use.

High fructose corn syrup: A liquid mixture of about equal parts glucose and fructose from cornstarch. Same sweetness as sucrose.

Corn syrup: Less sweet than sucrose.

Invert sugar: Helps keep sucrose from crystallizing in candies.

Lactose: Milk sugar. Breaks down into glucose and galactose, rather than the more common breakdown of fructose and glucose of other sugars.

Source: "What You Should Know About . . . Sugars," International Food Information Council

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