Fructose is a naturally occurring sugar found in honey, fruits, and vegetables, and fructose intolerance occurs when an individual cannot absorb or digest it. It is also a basic component of sucrose and is used to sweeten processed beverages and foods.
Individuals experiencing fructose intolerance should avoid high-fructose foods like grapes, apples, and asparagus. However, certain low-fructose foods, including carrots, strawberries, and avocados, can be tolerated.
Below we discuss everything you need to know about fructose intolerance.
Types of Fructose Intolerance
Below we discuss the three most common types of fructose intolerance;
1. Fructose Malabsorption
Fructose metabolism is a kind of food sensitivity that affects over 50% of people in Western countries. Many factors are significant in causing it, like lifestyle factors, fructose exposure, and a mixture of genetics.
Individuals with fructose malabsorption cannot digest or absorb fructose, which makes it pass through the large intestine. Other people with fructose malabsorption experience issues after taking certain foods, which include disaccharides and monosaccharides.
2. Essential Fructosuria
Essential fructosuria is also called hepatic fructokinase deficiency, and most victims do not know they have it. Children get it after receiving a gene from their parents, and people experiencing it do not need treatment because it is harmless.
3. Hereditary Fructose Intolerance
Hereditary fructose intolerance is a severe fructose intolerance type, but it is manageable and treatable. This condition happens when an individual cannot digest fructose, and it causes diarrhea, gas, and abdominal pain.
Also, the undigested fructose accumulates in the kidneys and liver, making it serious and life-threatening.
Fructose Intolerance Symptoms
The symptoms experienced depend on the type of fructose intolerance.
The main symptoms include;
- Hereditary Fructose Intolerance
The most common symptoms are;
- Growth delays
- Kidney or liver failure
- Impaired development.
Management and Treatment
People with fructose malabsorption should create a low fodmap diet and have a food log. Lowering your fructose intake eases the symptoms within two months. An individual can reintroduce these foods gradually after the symptoms reduce to know the fructose amount they can tolerate.
On the other hand, there is a treatment for hereditary fructose intolerance. Instead, you should avoid taking fructose. Those with fructose malabsorption ease their symptoms by taking less fructose.
You might suspect you have fructose malabsorption if you experience certain symptoms after taking foods with this sugar. Some medical officers might conduct a breath test which determines the hydrogen levels.
The liver biopsy is the first test, and it confirms aldolase deficiencies. Remember, a high nitrogen level shows the individual experiences difficulty in digesting fructose. A medical officer can also utilize the elimination method to diagnose this condition.
Fructose intolerance happens when a person cannot absorb and digest fructose properly. The above article has discussed everything you need to know about this condition, and you can reach out for more information.