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Harmful Effects Of Fruit Juice Many People Don’t Realize

Harmful Effects Of Fruit Juice Many People Don’t Realize

You may think that fruit juice is a healthy alternative to other drinks? Wrong, I am afraid! You probably think the “fruit” label is going to provide you with at least some of the vitamins, minerals and antioxidants that real fruit contains. Again, this is false but it is widely believed. We know that the average American drinks about 30 litres of fruit juice every year. You probably suspected that fruit juice is a poor substitute and you were right. Here are 5 harmful effects of fruit juice you were probably not aware of.

1. Fruit juice may have some nasty chemicals in it

It has to be stored and the only way to do that is to use enormous tanks which strip the oxygen out. Because it does not taste anything like the real thing, they developed flavor packs which were perfected in the 1960s, to add the taste and flavors back in.

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The problem is that these flavor packs are never listed on the ingredient labels because they supposedly just contain orange essence or oil. The reality is dangerously different. They contain high amounts of a chemical called ethyl butyrate which mimics the fragrance of freshly squeezed orange juice. Nothing natural about these chemicals, so eat an orange or an apple instead!

2. Fruit juice has a very limited number of nutrients

Nothing like freshly-squeezed orange juice! Pure, healthy juice full of vitamin C and lots of other goodies. Wrong again! Sweet juices, even freshly squeezed ones, are mostly fructose and have the same unhealthy effects on your body as a soft drink. (However, the fruit juice does at least contain a small amount of the nutrients such as Vitamin C, B1, folic acid, and potassium that you get in the whole fruit). It does not have the fiber content so that is why it is always better to go for the real thing.

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3. Fruit juice has loads of sugar

You know the problem with fruit juice? Look at these shocking statistics. A 12 oz can of Coca Cola contains 140 calories and 40 grams of sugar. No surprises there. But look at the same quantity of apple juice. It has even more calories (165) and 39 grams of sugar! Not great when you are watching your weight.

“Fruit juice is absorbed very fast, so by the time it gets to your stomach your body doesn’t know whether it’s Coca-Cola or orange juice, frankly. I have to say it is a relatively easy thing to give up. Swap it and have a piece of real fruit.” – Susan Jebb, head of the diet and obesity research group at the Medical Research Council’s Human Nutrition Research unit at Cambridge University.

4. Fruit juice may be connected with risk of diabetes

Researchers from the Harvard School of Public Health have been concentrating their studies on how eating apples, pears, grapes and blueberries can actually lower the risk of getting type 2 diabetes. Blueberries get the prize in that people who ate three servings a week had a 26% less chance of getting diabetes.

Bad news for fruit juice! The same researchers found that people who drank fruit juice had an 8% increased risk of getting the disease. They asked participants to drink half a liter of undiluted grape juice daily for a three month period. Lots of antioxidants in the juice but it actually increased their resistance to insulin.

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“Our data further endorse current recommendations on increasing whole fruits, but not fruit juice, as a measure for diabetes prevention.” – Isao Muraki, researcher at the Department of Nutrition at HSPH.

5. Fruit juice may cause gout in women

Guess what may cause gout, a painful form of arthritis, to flare up in women? Fruit juice and soda drinks. The American Medical Association has published a study which incriminates fruit juice because of its high fructose content. Women who took a few servings of fruit juice or sodas a day were twice as much at risk of suffering from gout than those women who had less than one serving a month.

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As we have seen, fruit juice is no longer the safer and healthier alternative to fruit because of the processing and its high sugar content. The best motto to follow is eat fruit but don’t drink it!

Featured photo credit: Juicing/ Rob Bertholf via flickr.com

More by this author

Robert Locke

Author of Ziger the Tiger Stories, a health enthusiast specializing in relationships, life improvement and mental health.

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Last Updated on May 22, 2019

10 Simple Morning Exercises That Will Make You Feel Great All Day

10 Simple Morning Exercises That Will Make You Feel Great All Day

There are lots of studies that show if you do some exercise in the morning, you will be in a better mood all day long. You will have more energy and you will certainly be a better colleague, friend or partner.

One psychologist at Duke University has researched the effects of exercise on depressed patients and he has come to the conclusion that exercise has a definite role in treating this condition and has an important role in preventing people from relapsing.[1] According to the New York Times, scientists have now established that exercise also boosts your brain power.[2]

In addition, there are studies from the Appalachian State University which show that blood pressure can be reduced by doing regular morning exercise.[3]

Here are 10 simple morning exercises that will help you feel great the whole day long. You can include some of them in your morning exercise routine or do them all at home without having to enrol in a gym. Consult your doctor before starting any form of exercise routine if you are new to this.

1. Cat Camel Stretch

Stretching exercises are useful for muscle toning and also preventing arthritis. They can either be dynamic or static.

Dynamic ones such as the cat camel stretch, are particularly useful for doing other exercises in the morning. They are also beneficial at other times of the day, especially after long periods of sedentary work. This one is great for spinal flexibility and is a good warm up exercise.

Kneel down on all fours. Start by rounding your back just like a camel so that your head will try to meet your pelvis. This is the camel position. Then lower and lift your head so that your lower back is arched. This is the cat position. Do these movements slowly and smoothly. About 4 or 5 times.

Here’s a video to guide you through:

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2. Go for a Walk or a Run

This is better done outside so that you can connect with nature but running inside on a treadmill is almost as good. You can time yourself and increase length and time according to your fitness program.

Always have new goals to reach. Start with brisk walking and work up to running. At my age, I am still walking!

The health benefits are considerable. You can build stronger bones and you can help to maintain your weight.

Also, you are helping your heart to stay healthy and keeping your blood pressure low.

Learn more about the benefits of running here: 8 Benefits of Running 5 Minutes Every Day You Didn’t Know

3. Jumping Jacks

Michelle Obama is a great fan of this exercise and has become “Jumper in Chief.”[4] They are great for cardiovascular health and also for toning muscles especially the calves and the deltoids.

Stand with feet together. Jump while spreading your arms and legs. Return to first position and keep going! You can start with doing these for 1 minute and then gradually build up to the number you are comfortable with. Here’s how:

4. Abductor Side Lifts

Watch the video below to see how to do this exercise. These muscles are important because you use them everyday to run, get into the car or onto and off a bicycle. They are very important also for your core stability and prevent the pelvis from tilting.[5]

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Do about 10 to 15 raises for each side like this:

5. Balancing Table Pose

This is a classic yoga pose. It benefits the spine, balance, memory and concentration.

Start with the table pose (hands and knees). Breathe in before starting each movement. As you exhale, raise your left leg parallel to the floor as you raise the right arm, also parallel to the floor. Breathe in as you lower arm and leg. Repeat for the other side. 10 repetitions on each side is a good starting point.

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    6. Leg Squats

    Not just legs are involved but also hips and knees.

    Stand with your feet a bit further out from your hips. Arms are out in front of you. Then lower yourself as if you wanted to sit down until you reach a 90 degree angle. You can go down further if you want to. Then return to the starting position. Repeat 15 times for 2 sets for beginners.

    The benefits are that these exercises help with knee stability and can benefit the leg muscles such as quadriceps, hamstrings and calves.[6]

    7. Push Ups

    You start lying down (face down) but with your body held up at arm’s length. Your hands should be in line with your shoulders. Breathe in as you lower your body. That is fairly easy. Now, as you exhale, you have to get back up to the starting position.

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    An easier version to start with is to bend your legs at the knees so you do not have to lift your whole body.

    Beginners may take up to a month to be able to do 100 push ups so you will have to start with a very small number and gradually increase it.

    This exercise is great for strengthening the chest, shoulders and the triceps. It is a great strengthening exercise for many muscle groups. In fact, most muscles from the toes to the shoulders are being used.

    8. Bicycle Crunches

    There are numerous crunch exercises targeting the abs. The bicycle crunch is a variation where you work more muscle groups. Aim for 15 to 20 reps to start off with.

    Watch the video to see how this is done correctly:

    9. Lunges

    Stand with feet shoulder width apart. Place your hand on your hips. Take one giant step forward with the right leg. Make sure the knee does not go too far forward, that is, past your toes. The left knee will go down to almost floor level. Alternate the legs as you go on.

    Try to do a set of between 8 and 12 reps for each leg. It is important to allow for a day of rest, so this exercise should be done on alternate days, especially if you are using weights.

    This exercise is great for strengthening and toning the quadriceps, glutes and hamstrings.

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    10. Bicep Curls

    You can do this sitting down so if you spend a lot of time on the phone, this is a great exercise to do.

    Choose suitable dumbbells or another household object that you can easily hold. Sit down with the dumbbell in your hand. You need to sit forward a bit so that your triceps can lean on your thigh to give you support.

    Then bring the weighted arm up to shoulder length and then down again. Exhale as you lift the weight and inhale as you lower it.

    Here’re some important notes before you start doing this exercise:

    Try to do one or two sets of about ten repetitions for each arm and then switch arms.

    These exercises are really useful for toning the arm muscles.[7] In addition, they can strengthen and tone the brachioradialis muscle located in the forearm. These are the muscles we use to pick up things when we flex the arm at the elbow so we use these muscles countless times a day.

    You may have to build in a rest day for the heavier exercises, numbers 6–10. On the rest days, you can do gentler stretching exercises and also some walking or running.

    Morning exercise is not only a great mood booster, but will help you keep your weight down and also sleep better![8] Start including one or some of these exercises in your morning routine!

    More Articles About Exercises for Beginners

    Featured photo credit: Unsplash via unsplash.com

    Reference

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