We’re big proponents of squatting here at AoM — particularly the low-bar squat. The mechanics of the low-bar squat allow you to work more muscles in your posterior chain, i.e., the “chain” of muscles that run up the back of the body. More muscle utilization = more weight moved.
But there are other ways to squat that can provide similar benefits to the low-bar squat. For example, many people do the high-bar squat, which is similar to the low-bar squat, except the bar is held higher on the back.
High-fructose corn syrup (HFCS), also known as glucose-fructose, isoglucose and glucose-fructose syrup, is a sweetener made from corn starch. As in the production of conventional corn syrup, the starch is broken down into glucose by enzymes. To make HFCS, the corn syrup is further processed by D-xylose isomerase to convert some of its glucose into fructose. HFCS was first marketed in the early 1970s by the Clinton Corn Processing Company, together with the Japanese Agency of Industrial Science and Technology, where the enzyme was discovered in 1965.
As a sweetener, HFCS is often compared to granulated sugar, but manufacturing advantages of HFCS over sugar include that it is easier to handle and cheaper. “HFCS 42” and “HFCS 55” refer to dry weight fructose compositions of 42% and 55% respectively, the rest being glucose. HFCS 42 is mainly used for processed foods and breakfast cereals, whereas HFCS 55 is used mostly for production of soft drinks.
The United States Food and Drug Administration states that HFCS is a safe ingredient for food and beverage manufacturing. Uses and exports of HFCS from American producers have grown steadily during the early 21st century.
In the United States, HFCS was widely used in food manufacturing from the 1970s through the early 21st century, primarily as a replacement for sucrose because its sweetness was similar to sucrose, it improved manufacturing quality, was easier to use, and was cheaper. Domestic production of HFCS increased from 2.2 million tons in 1980 to a peak of 9.5 million tons in 1999. Although HFCS use is about the same as sucrose use in the United States, more than 90% of sweeteners used in global manufacturing is sucrose.
Production of HFCS in the United States was 8.3 million tons in 2017. HFCS is easier to handle than granulated sucrose, although some sucrose is transported as solution. Unlike sucrose, HFCS cannot be hydrolyzed, but the free fructose in HFCS may produce hydroxymethylfurfural when stored at high temperatures; these differences are most prominent in acidic beverages. Soft drink makers such as Coca-Cola and Pepsi continue to use sugar in other nations but transitioned to HFCS for U.S. markets in 1980 before completely switching over in 1984. Large corporations, such as Archer Daniels Midland, lobby for the continuation of government corn subsidies.
Consumption of HFCS in the U.S. has declined since it peaked at 37.5 lb (17.0 kg) per person in 1999. The average American consumed approximately 22.1 lb (10.0 kg) of HFCS in 2018, versus 40.3 lb (18.3 kg) of refined cane and beet sugar. This decrease in domestic consumption of HFCS resulted in a push in exporting of the product. In 2014, exports of HFCS were valued at $436 million, a decrease of 21% in one year, with Mexico receiving about 75% of the export volume.
In 2010, the Corn Refiners Association petitioned the FDA to call HFCS “corn sugar”, but the petition was denied.
In the European Union (EU), HFCS is known as isoglucose or glucose-fructose syrup (GFS) which has 20–30% fructose content compared to 42% (HFCS 42) and 55% (HFCS 55) in the United States. While HFCS is produced exclusively with corn in the US, manufacturers in the EU use corn and wheat to produce GFS. GFS was once subject to a sugar production quota, which was abolished on 1 October 2017, removing the previous production cap of 720,000 tonnes, and allowing production and export without restriction. Use of GFS in soft drinks is limited in the EU because manufacturers do not have a sufficient supply of GFS containing at least 42% fructose content. As a result, soft drinks are primarily sweetened by sucrose which has a 50% fructose content.
Obesity and metabolic syndrome
There is no scientific evidence that HFCS itself causes obesity or metabolic syndrome, but rather overconsumption and excessive caloric intake of any sweetened food or beverage may contribute to these diseases. Epidemiological research has shown that the increase in metabolic disorders, such as obesity and non-alcoholic fatty liver disease, is linked to increased consumption of sugars and calories in general. A 2012 review found that fructose did not appear to cause weight gain when it replaced other carbohydrates in diets with similar calories. A 2014 systematic review found little evidence for an association between HFCS consumption and liver diseases, enzyme levels or fat content. A 2018 review found that diets high in fructose can cause the nonalcoholic fatty liver disease due to fat accumulation in the liver. In 2014, the American Heart Association recommended that people limit added sugar (such as maltose, sucrose, high-fructose corn syrup, molasses or cane sugar) in their diets.
Read more here: High-fructose corn syrup – Wikipedia
“Cis fat” vs. “trans fat”
In nature, unsaturated fatty acids generally have double bonds in cis configuration (with the adjacent C–C bonds on the same side) as opposed to trans. Nevertheless, trans fatty acids (TFAs) occur in small amounts in meat and milk of ruminants (such as cattle and sheep), typically 2–5% of total fat. Natural TFAs, which include conjugated linoleic acid (CLA) and vaccenic acid, originate in the rumen of these animals. CLA has two double bonds, one in the cis configuration and one in trans, which makes it simultaneously a cis– and a trans-fatty acid.
Trans fat contents in various natural and traditionally processed foods, in g per 100 g
|Food type||Trans fat content|
|butter||2g to 7 g|
|whole milk||0.07g to 0.1 g|
|animal fat||0g to 5 g|
|ground beef||1 g|
Concerns about trans fatty acids in human diet were raised when they were found to be an unintentional byproduct of the partial hydrogenation of vegetable and fish oils. While these trans fatty acids (popularly called “trans fats”) are edible, they have been implicated in many health problems. Converson of cis to trans fatty acids in partial hydrogenation
The hydrogenation process, invented and patented by Wilhelm Normann in 1902, made it possible to turn relatively cheap liquid fats such as whale or fish oil into more solid fats and to extend their shelf-life by preventing rancidification. (The source fat and the process were initially kept secret to avoid consumer distaste.) This process was widely adopted by the food industry already in the early 1900s; first for the production of margarine, a replacement for butter and shortening, and eventually for various other fats used in snack food, packaged baked goods, and deep fried products.
Full hydrogenation of a fat or oil produces a fully saturated fat. However, hydrogenation generally was interrupted before completion, to yield a fat product with specific melting point, hardness, and other properties. Unfortunately, partial hydrogenation turns some of the cis double bonds into trans bonds by an isomerization reaction. The trans configuration is favored because it is the lower energy form.
This side reaction accounts for most of the trans fatty acids consumed today, by far. An analysis of some industrialized foods in 2006 found up to 30% “trans fats” in artificial shortening, 10% in breads and cake products, 8% in cookies and crackers, 4% in salty snacks, 7% in cake frostings and sweets, and 26% in margarine and other processed spreads. Another 2010 analysis however found only 0.2% of trans fats in margarine and other processed spreads. Up to 45% of the total fat in those foods containing man-made trans fats formed by partially hydrogenating plant fats may be trans fat. Baking shortenings, unless reformulated, contain around 30% trans fats compared to their total fats. High-fat dairy products such as butter contain about 4%. Margarines not reformulated to reduce trans fats may contain up to 15% trans fat by weight, but some reformulated ones are less than 1% trans fat.
High levels of TFAs have been recorded in popular “fast food” meals. An analysis of samples of McDonald’s French fries collected in 2004 and 2005 found that fries served in New York City contained twice as much trans fat as in Hungary, and 28 times as much as in Denmark, where trans fats are restricted. For Kentucky Fried Chicken products, the pattern was reversed: the Hungarian product containing twice the trans fat of the New York product. Even within the United States, there was variation, with fries in New York containing 30% more trans fat than those from Atlanta.
It has been established that trans fats in human breast milk fluctuate with maternal consumption of trans fat, and that the amount of trans fats in the bloodstream of breastfed infants fluctuates with the amounts found in their milk. In 1999, reported percentages of trans fats (compared to total fats) in human milk ranged from 1% in Spain, 2% in France, 4% in Germany, and 7% in Canada and the United States.
Other health risks
There are suggestions that the negative consequences of trans fat consumption go beyond the cardiovascular risk. In general, there is much less scientific consensus asserting that eating trans fat specifically increases the risk of other chronic health problems:
- Alzheimer’s disease: A study published in Archives of Neurology in February 2003 suggested that the intake of both trans fats and saturated fats promote the development of Alzheimer disease, although not confirmed in an animal model. It has been found that trans fats impaired memory and learning in middle-age rats. The trans-fat eating rats’ brains had fewer proteins critical to healthy neurological function. Inflammation in and around the hippocampus, the part of the brain responsible for learning and memory. These are the exact types of changes normally seen at the onset of Alzheimer’s, but seen after six weeks, even though the rats were still young.
- Cancer: There is no scientific consensus that consuming trans fats significantly increases cancer risks across the board. The American Cancer Society states that a relationship between trans fats and cancer “has not been determined.” One study has found a positive connection between trans fat and prostate cancer. However, a larger study found a correlation between trans fats and a significant decrease in high-grade prostate cancer. An increased intake of trans fatty acids may raise the risk of breast cancer by 75%, suggest the results from the French part of the European Prospective Investigation into Cancer and Nutrition.
- Diabetes: There is a growing concern that the risk of type 2 diabetes increases with trans fat consumption. However, consensus has not been reached. For example, one study found that risk is higher for those in the highest quartile of trans fat consumption. Another study has found no diabetes risk once other factors such as total fat intake and BMI were accounted for.
- Obesity: Research indicates that trans fat may increase weight gain and abdominal fat, despite a similar caloric intake. A 6-year experiment revealed that monkeys fed a trans fat diet gained 7.2% of their body weight, as compared to 1.8% for monkeys on a mono-unsaturated fat diet. Although obesity is frequently linked to trans fat in the popular media, this is generally in the context of eating too many calories; there is not a strong scientific consensus connecting trans fat and obesity, although the 6-year experiment did find such a link, concluding that “under controlled feeding conditions, long-term TFA consumption was an independent factor in weight gain. TFAs enhanced intra-abdominal deposition of fat, even in the absence of caloric excess, and were associated with insulin resistance, with evidence that there is impaired post-insulin receptor binding signal transduction.”
- Infertility in women: One 2007 study found, “Each 2% increase in the intake of energy from trans unsaturated fats, as opposed to that from carbohydrates, was associated with a 73% greater risk of ovulatory infertility…”.
- Major depressive disorder: Spanish researchers analysed the diets of 12,059 people over six years and found that those who ate the most trans fats had a 48 per cent higher risk of depression than those who did not eat trans fats. One mechanism may be trans-fats’ substitution for docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) levels in the orbitofrontal cortex (OFC). Very high intake of trans-fatty acids (43% of total fat) in mice from 2 to 16 months of age was associated with lowered DHA levels in the brain (p=0.001). When the brains of 15 major depressive subjects who had committed suicide were examined post-mortem and compared against 27 age-matched controls, the suicidal brains were found to have 16% less (male average) to 32% less (female average) DHA in the OFC. The OFC controls reward, reward expectation, and empathy (all of which are reduced in depressive mood disorders) and regulates the limbic system.
- Behavioral irritability and aggression: a 2012 observational analysis of subjects of an earlier study found a strong relation between dietary trans fat acids and self-reported behavioral aggression and irritability, suggesting but not establishing causality.
- Diminished memory: In a 2015 article, researchers re-analyzing results from the 1999-2005 UCSD Statin Study argue that “greater dietary trans fatty acid consumption is linked to worse word memory in adults during years of high productivity, adults age <45”.
- Acne: According to a 2015 study, trans fats are one of several components of Western pattern diets which promote acne, along with carbohydrates with high glycemic load such as refined sugars or refined starches, milk and dairy products, and saturated fats, while omega-3 fatty acids, which reduce acne, are deficient in Western pattern diets.
Keep it together, you never know who’s watching.
Bumper plates. Expensive before CoVAIDS, I never bothered looking since. What with the cost hikes and all (((Totally not inflation, go back to sleep.))) Anywho. Bumper plates. You see the big CrossFit names use them on TV. You see the Olympic Lifters chucking bars like Donkey Kang.
But you’re poor.
The good news is people throw away car, truck, other tires ALL THE TIME. With a little Redneck Engineering and Hick Craft, you can have you some Redneck Bumper Plates.
Over 16 million people suffer from chronic lower back pain in the USA. Conventional wisdom has dictated that pain means we should not load the spine, however, recent studies not only suggest that this ‘wisdom’ is incorrect, but that not lifting might actually make things worse! In fact, exercise and resistance exercise appears to be one of the MOST powerful ways to reduce back pain available today!