While it’s possible that you’ll find the wordplay in today’s title less than clever, it’s more than probable that Tyree Winters, DO, an osteopathic pediatrician focused on childhood obesity at Rowan University, would find it accurate.

Extremely accurate. Like an army sniper shooting at a stationary target from 50 feet accurate.

Winters knows “fructose provides no nutritional value and isn’t metabolized in the brain. Your body converts it to fat, but doesn’t recognize you’ve eaten, so the hunger doesn’t go away.” Cut it out of your diet, however, and you “make way for food that the body can properly metabolize ... [As a result] the hunger and sugar cravings fade.” He shares this in a media release of a review of several carefully controlled sugar studies published last July in the Journal of the American Osteopathic Association.

The review reinforces much of what you’ve read about fructose through this column over the last 20 or so years. It found, for instance, that when compared to glucose, the body’s preferred energy source, fructose converts to fat nearly 19 times faster.

This occurs because 90 percent of fructose is metabolized by the liver, an organ that has relatively little storage space for glycogen (the name for carb-based, stored energy). So most of it gets sent to the fat stores to become body fat.

Conversely, 80 percent of glucose is metabolized somewhere other than the liver, mostly by the mitochondria in cells. Moreover, glucose transformed into glycogen doesn’t turn to fat nearly as quickly because it stores far more easily in cells, especially muscle cells accustomed to taking in as much energy as possible because of frequent and ambitious exercise.

This metabolic difference makes the fire/accelerant analogy appropriate and is why Winters also suggests in the media release for you to ”cut out the HFCS,” high-fructose corn syrup, the form of sugar that does the most to create fructose overload. Doing so improves your blood profile in as little as two weeks, thereby making you “healthier without dieting or counting calories.”

Yet do so and the grand goal of dieting and counting calories — weight loss — naturally occurs. And this weight loss provides the positive reinforcement that makes it easier for you to keep steering clear of godforsaken but good-tasting HFCS.

And if losing or controlling your weight really is your grand goal, another study published last July provides further reason to forsake HFCS. Along with all added sugars, HFCS, the most frequently consumed one, reduces the rate in which you process fat.

In the study published last July in BMC Nutrition, 27 healthy young adults under highly controlled scientific conditions ate the same 500-calorie, 15-percent protein meal for both lunch and dinner.

With one of the meals, a sugar-sweetened cherry drink was consumed. With the other, a sugar-free cherry drink replaced it.

The highly controlled scientific conditions allowed the researchers to determine that fat oxidation slowed when the sugar-sweetened beverage was consumed with the meal. While you might argue that was to be expected since total calories increased as well, there’s a caveat to that.

Those extra cals didn’t make the subjects feel fuller, a finding that echoes one of Winters’ concerns about fructose and primarily HFCS: that because of the manner in which it’s processed, your body doesn’t “recognize” that you’ve eaten.

Your hunger remains, so you keep eating. And keep gaining weight.

On another day, the researchers repeated the experiment with the same subjects but doubled the percentage of protein in the 500-calorie meal. Surprisingly, this increase further decreased fat oxidation.

By an average of 12.6 grams. Or about 115 calories.

The decrease suggests just one more way that HFCS and all sugar-sweetened beverages can be so dietarily debilitating: increasing the percentage of protein in a meal usually increases, not decreases, the meal’s thermic effect. Increased thermic effect is simply the scientific way to say you need to produce more heat to digest the foods consumed.

More heat expended means more energy “wasted” during digestion. More waste means less that could possibly be stored as fat.

But slug a sugar-sweetened beverage with your protein-packed meal, the new research suggests, and you significantly reduce its thermic effect.

So much so that Shannon Casperson, a research biologist with the U.S. Department of Agriculture and the research leader in the study published by BMC Nutrition, believes “that’s something we need to look at in the future.”

Is it?

If the “we” refers to researchers, for sure. But it’s hardly necessary if we apply the “we” to you.

What you need to do occurs in the present.

Since HFCS, the way most fructose finds its way into you diet, is found in 75 percent of packaged foods, do a better job of reading labels in the grocery store. And make a commitment to do less buying of fast food and more cooking at home.