discovery – mercury found in high fructose corn syrup


I was already feeling guilty this weekend.  Guilty for throwing away some Valentine’s candy the kiddos had been given, guilty for not feeling comfortable to ask that the kiddos not be given candy, and guilty for only letting them have the little candy they had. 

On NPR this morning, they mentioned that more people, world-wide, are eating ‘fast food’ and spending more at the grocery stores to save money they would normally spend at expensive restaurants.  It’s good that we’re watching our spending, trying to make wiser choices.  But are they really wiser?

A couple months ago, the builder and the dancer came down with a strange virus and a terrible rash (all over their bodies).  Immediately, we went to the kinesiologist.  He first concluded that there was indeed, a virus present, but that there was something else bothering the kiddos.  As we checked for typical food allergies, we were coming up short.  The builder has had problems with corn in the past, so I asked him to check corn, and various forms of corn.  Finally we hit the jack-pot: corn syrup.

How I loathe corn syrup.  For a while I felt compelled to make a difference.  We don’t have corn syrup in our home.  There is a very small amount of processed food in our home (your main source of corn syrup).  But the kiddos had been getting it outside of our home.  A little here and a little there.  So we began sending a snack for the kiddos to nursery (at church), and informed the nursery leader. 

Fortunately, the builder has moved on to Primary, but that means I need to take the initiative and tell his new teacher, for she is so good to give her class snacks, and the builder is always good to share with his sister.  Over time, I have become complacent.  Figuring if I don’t allow it in our home, that they will be okay if they receive corn syrup from time to time outside our home.

Then I read an article at, about High Fructose Corn Syrup, or HFCS.  A recent study found that nearly half of the HFCS samples contained mercury.  And that out of 55 popular beverages, almost a third contained mercury (that is, those with HFCS as the first or second ingredient). 

This set out a major red flag for me!  I had no idea.  And seriously, what next?  Why am I concerned?  Known side-affects of mercury consumption include…

In pregnant women:

  • mental retardation
  • blindness
  • deafness
  • cerebral palsy

In the nervous system:

  • headaches
  • personality changes, irritability
  • insomnia

“To make matters worse, mercury bonds very firmly to structures in your CNS. Unless actively removed, it has an extremely long half-life of somewhere between 15 and 30 years in the CNS! What this means is that consuming mercury-contaminated HFCS is probably cumulative, with the damage adding up over time.”

Why have we avoided HFCS in the past?  It’s quick metabolism is known to cause:

  • diabetes
  • obesity
  • metabolic syndrome
  • liver disease
  • an over abundance of bad cholesterol

Yes, I began this post with guilt.  But I would feel more guilty if I did not pass along this information.  I am very frustrated with what our society considers natural or healthy food sources.  Most of the items sold in grocery stores should not be considered nourishing for our bodies.  Unfortunately, it is way too much for the FDA to handle all that is entering our food source.  I am recommittingto being more proactive on the fight against HFCS.  Yes, I will be asking outside kiddo food sources to not give them processed food and candy.  I hope I can do it in a way that people will not be offended. 

If you want to do more research on HFCS and see the sources from the article:

Want to know some of the food sources tested?

  • Hershey’s
  • Quaker
  • Kraft
  • Smucker’s

What are you doing to make more healthy choices for yourself and/or your family?  How have you successfully asked others not to give your children certain things? 

p.s. Please don’t tell the kiddos I threw away their candy!  And a special thanks to my girls at playgroup, who are always trying to offer/bring healthy snacks!

5 thoughts on “discovery – mercury found in high fructose corn syrup

  1. i feel exactly the same at church!!! i feel thwarted in my efforts to influence my children’s food choices outside of the home. i brought healthy choices to a ward potluck but my kid’s just begged for what everyone else had brought. i don’t want to make a scene and don’t want to offend those who bring the food. i’ve considered sending anna’s almond butter sandwich to nursery but it pales in comparison to the fruit snacks they serve. 😦 i wish more people in the church got the nutritional aspects of the WOW. thanks for sharing your findings. i love the feeling of having someone else out there whom i see eye to eye with!

  2. I feel the same way too! Thank you for all that information! I actually work in the nursery, and they serve gummy bears, which I think I will be needing to check the label on them next time I am there and mention this information to them. I have been on an extreme healthy foods kick lately, and can’t wait for spring to plant my own garden foods. I will save money and health! The scriptures talk about the last days and us having to have our own gardens, and maybe its not just because their will be a shortage, but because the foods that are sold in stores are contaminated with chemicals that aren’t good for us. I went to a class recently, that teaches you to raise your energy vibration levels to a more posotive level, and they taught about it being essential for your body to have raw live foods. Not meaning meat, lol, but raw vegetables and fruits and grains that haven’t been processed yet. When you put the processed foods into your body, it lowers your energy levels and your body has to work to release the toxins. With water you are supposed to have 1 qt, for every 50 lbs a day. If you are not drinking water, you are living for death, because your body starts to decompose without it. Water is most essential for your body, and for your energy vibrations to be at its highest level. So live for life and drink lots of water!lol My kids don’t get juice very often. It is a treat for them, I started them young with drinking water all throughout the day, and that is all they ask for. Sad that we have to be careful with whats in our water nowdays too. I don’t realy ever give them milk either, because their are a lot of added chemicals to it too, and we have a lot of sensitivities to dairy in our family, which could actually be sensitivites to whats added to the dairy, rather than the basic ingredients. We just find other healthy things for them to eat that have the vitamins that cows milk would give them instead. It seems costly and a little hard sometimes to eat completely healthy, but I feel in the long run it is soooo worth it!

  3. Hi Julie 🙂

    So ya, way hard when the other stuff looks more exciting. If I’m skeptical, I feed the kiddos before we go. Then if it looks enticing, they are already full and one taste is all they want.

    As for church, we just got a new Primary Presidency, and I’m considering talking with a couple of them and telling them about the mercury. There used to be a policy about no treats at church. But I’m thinking it must have been a ward based thing. Health needs to be a priority. I’m not sure who to talk with about the problem. It probably needs to be a higher thing.

    As for the fillings, I asked my mom, and she doesn’t think they are. (But I don’t think she knows). I read that they should be taken out, but by someone who is an expert. Dr. Mercola has a list of Dentists on his site. I’m looking for it, but can’t find it. Though, I found this great article on mervury fillings:
    I think my mom thinks we all have silver fillings, but the article explains that 50% of the silver fillings are actually mercury. It also says that the first thing to do is to get your body healthy before you remove the fillings. Mistakes in removal will cause the mercury to go ‘straight to your brain.’

    Keep researching. I’ll let you know what else I find out.

    So our last visit to the dentist (in nov) was the first in 3 years (i know…bad parent). But the builder had no cavities and I was so thankful.

    There were other articles I spotted that talked about that when you have disease/illness/etc, dental work actually makes it worse (can send the infections where you don’t want them).

    Okay, long reply. Tons of great articles on Mercola. com about flouride, fillings, tooth regrowth formulas that will be more available in the future. Cool stuff. Oh, so the dental hygentist thought i was such a terrible parent because i didn’t want flouride for the builder. 🙂

  4. Julia,

    Cool that you’re in nursery. You can soo make a difference. And see a difference in the kids as they are not eating HFCS (which I can gaurentee is in those gummy bears). Can you get them to give the kids fresh fruit, nuts (for those not allergic) or nut butter, veggies, crackers (whole grain). I wish you were in our Nursery, and I’m sure Julie does too! Make a difference and let us know!

    Thx for the ‘importance of water’ reminder. Raw food rocks. I need to learn more about the raw foodies out there. I’d love to have a guest post-person if anyone knows a willing Raw Food expert…:)

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