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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 September 18, 2020

7 Simple Rules to Live by to Get in Shape in Two Weeks

7 Simple Rules to Live by to Get in Shape in Two Weeks

Learning how to get in shape and set goals is important if you’re looking to live a healthier lifestyle and get closer to your goal weight. While this does require changes to your daily routine, you’ll find that you are able to look and feel better in only two weeks.

Over the years, I’ve learned a lot about what it takes to get in shape. Although anyone can cover the basics (eat right and exercise), there are some things that I could only learn through trial and error. Let’s cover some of the most important points for how to get in shape in two weeks.

1. Exercise Daily

It is far easier to make exercise a habit if it is a daily one. If you aren’t exercising at all, I recommend starting by exercising a half hour every day. When you only exercise a couple times per week, it is much easier to turn one day off into three days off, a week off, or a month off.

If you are already used to exercising, switching to three or four times a week to fit your schedule may be preferable, but it is a lot harder to maintain a workout program you don’t do every day.

Be careful to not repeat the same exercise routine each day. If you do an intense ab workout one day, try switching it up to general cardio the next. You can also squeeze in a day of light walking to break up the intensity.

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If you’re a morning person, check out these morning exercises that will start your day off right.

2. Duration Doesn’t Substitute for Intensity

Once you get into the habit of regular exercise, where do you go if you still aren’t reaching your goals? Most people will solve the problem by exercising for longer periods of time, turning forty-minute workouts into two hour stretches. Not only does this drain your time, but it doesn’t work particularly well.

One study shows that “exercising for a whole hour instead of a half does not provide any additional loss in either body weight or fat”[1].

This is great news for both your schedule and your levels of motivation. You’ll likely find it much easier to exercise for 30 minutes a day instead of an hour. In those 30 minutes, do your best to up the intensity to your appropriate edge to get the most out of the time.

3. Acknowledge Your Limits

Many people get frustrated when they plateau in their weight loss or muscle gaining goals as they’re learning how to get in shape. Everyone has an equilibrium and genetic set point where their body wants to remain. This doesn’t mean that you can’t achieve your fitness goals, but don’t be too hard on yourself if you are struggling to lose weight or put on muscle.

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Acknowledging a set point doesn’t mean giving up, but it does mean realizing the obstacles you face.

Expect to hit a plateau in your own fitness results[2]. When you expect a plateau, you can manage around it so you can continue your progress at a more realistic rate. When expectations meet reality, you can avoid dietary crashes.

4. Eat Healthy, Not Just Food That Looks Healthy

Know what you eat. Don’t fuss over minutia like whether you’re getting enough Omega 3’s or tryptophan, but be aware of the big things. Look at the foods you eat regularly and figure out whether they are healthy or not. Don’t get fooled by the deceptively healthy snacks just pretending to be good for you.

The basic nutritional advice includes:

  • Eat unprocessed foods
  • Eat more veggies
  • Use meat as a side dish, not a main course
  • Eat whole grains, not refined grains[3]

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Eat whole grains when you want to learn how to get in shape.

    5. Watch Out for Travel

    Don’t let a four-day holiday interfere with your attempts when you’re learning how to get in shape. I don’t mean that you need to follow your diet and exercise plan without any excursion, but when you are in the first few weeks, still forming habits, be careful that a week long break doesn’t terminate your progress.

    This is also true of schedule changes that leave you suddenly busy or make it difficult to exercise. Have a backup plan so you can be consistent, at least for the first month when you are forming habits.

    If travel is on your schedule and can’t be avoided, make an exercise plan before you go[4], and make sure to pack exercise clothes and an exercise mat as motivation to keep you on track.

    6. Start Slow

    Ever start an exercise plan by running ten miles and then puking your guts out? Maybe you aren’t that extreme, but burnout is common early on when learning how to get in shape. You have a lifetime to be healthy, so don’t try to go from couch potato to athletic superstar in a week.

    If you are starting a running regime, for example, run less than you can to start. Starting strength training? Work with less weight than you could theoretically lift. Increasing intensity and pushing yourself can come later when your body becomes comfortable with regular exercise.

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    7. Be Careful When Choosing a Workout Partner

    Should you have a workout partner? That depends. Workout partners can help you stay motivated and make exercising more fun. But they can also stop you from reaching your goals.

    My suggestion would be to have a workout partner, but when you start to plateau (either in physical ability, weight loss/gain, or overall health) and you haven’t reached your goals, consider mixing things up a bit.

    If you plateau, you may need to make changes to continue improving. In this case it’s important to talk to your workout partner about the changes you want to make, and if they don’t seem motivated to continue, offer a thirty day break where you both try different activities.

    I notice that guys working out together tend to match strength after a brief adjustment phase. Even if both are trying to improve, something seems to stall improvement once they reach a certain point. I found that I was able to lift as much as 30-50% more after taking a short break from my regular workout partner.

    Final Thoughts

    Learning how to get in shape in as little as two weeks sounds daunting, but if you’re motivated and have the time and energy to devote to it, it’s certainly possible.

    Find an exercise routine that works for you, eat healthy, drink lots of water, and watch as the transformation begins.

    More Tips on Getting in Shape

    Featured photo credit: Alexander Redl via unsplash.com

    Reference

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