From: Paul Schaefer, ENN
Published August 20, 2007 10:29 AM

Corn Syrup Makers Claim No Link Between Soft Drink Consumption and Obesity

WASHINGTON, - According to a report, sponsored and conducted by corn syrup makers whose sweetner is used in soft drinks, people who frequently consume soft drinks sweetened with corn syrup, do not have a higher obesity rate than those who rarely drink them.


The study, sponsored by the Archer Daniels Midland Company and conducted by it's science employees, was printed in this month's edition of Food and Chemical Toxicology. The company says their science employees "found" higher obesity rates correlated with several other factors, such as the amount of time in front of the computer or TV, or the consumption of high amounts of dietary fat. But, the company claims in its report, those who frequently consumed sweetened beverages -- containing high fructose corn syrup -- "did not have a higher risk of obesity".


"This study supports the notion that no single ingredient or component in our diets is the sole cause for the obesity rise in the US population," said Dr. Mark Empie, an employee of Archer Daniels Midland Company, which makes corn syrup, and one of the reports authors.


USDA data show that per capita consumption of high fructose corn syrup is declining, yet obesity and diabetes rates continue to rise. In addition, obesity rates are rising around the world, including in Mexico, Australia and Europe, even though the use of high fructose corn syrup outside of the United States is limited or nonexistent.


Among the Archer Daniels Midland Company report "findings":


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-- A higher physical activity level is related to a lower incidence of obesity.


-- Television and computer screen watching time are related to increased obesity.


-- High fat diets are related to an increased obesity incidence.


-- Those who frequently consume sweetened beverages -- such as sweetened soft drinks and punch -- had similar obesity percentages compared to infrequent users.


The report was paid for and conducted by the Archer Daniels Midland Company. It was authored by Dr. Sam Z. Sun, a science employee of Archer Daniels Midland. Archer Daniels Midland is a member of the Corn Refiners Association.


For the study, the the employees of Archer Daniels Midland Company "analyzed" extensive data from the USDA Continuing Surveys of Food Intakes by Individuals, CDC National Health and Nutrition Examination Surveys and the Food Surveys Research Group.


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