You might have read in the news yesterday about a study that was published in the Global Public Health Journal alleging risks of consuming high fructose corn syrup (HFCS).

This research does not show that consuming HFCS – from sugar-sweetened beverages or any other food – causes type 2 diabetes. Moreover, the authors’ conclusions about a possible association aren’t supported by the data.

For example, Hungary has a relatively low incidence of diabetes – yet has the second highest per capita consumption of HFCS. Conversely, countries like Egypt and Malaysia, which have among the highest incidence of diabetes, have low consumption of HFCS.

Other scientists also agree that the conclusions the authors made about HFCS are flawed:

Dr. Marion Nestle, professor of food, nutrition studies, and public health at New York University in New York told the New York Times: “I think it’s a stretch to say the study shows high-fructose corn syrup has anything special to do with diabetes.”

Dr. Robert Lustig, a professor at University of California San Francisco told the Los Angeles Times that “the researchers did not show that higher consumption of high fructose corn syrup caused the increase in diabetes, only that there was a link between the two.”

Lustig also said, “The people who have diabetes may or may not be the people who ate the HFCS…The researchers didn’t assess all aspects of the diet. For instance, other researchers have found an association between processed meat consumption and diabetes, and this study didn’t look at that food.”

All this paper shows is that there is an association between obesity and diabetes, which is already well known. The facts are simple: neither HFCS nor soft drinks are responsible for causing diabetes.