All sweets are not alike.
Sure, it's easy to fool your tongue. It thinks they're all the same.
But ask the liver, the pancreas, and now the brain: sugars metabolize differently. In particular, fructose.
The latest study, published in JAMA this week, studied MRIs of subjects to find a possible link in the brain between the consumption of fructose and obesity.
When subjects ingested glucose (the traditional form of sugar found in nature), the areas of the brain that regulate appetite and satiety were affected "normally." In other words, people registered tht they were feeling full from the intake.
But when the same people consumed fructose--a compound very similar in chemical makeup to glucose--the brains didn't activate in the same way. In fact, the hormones that impact satiety were barely boosted at all.
So why do we care? Fructose is normally just present in the fruits we eat. But today, its presence is everywhere as an artificially cooked up product make in a lab (a.k.a. high-fructose corn syrup or HFCS). It is now ubiquitious, found in just about every processed food you can imagine--from pretzels and soups to breads and, of course, anything meant to actually taste sweet.