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4 Surprising Reasons Drinking Fruit Juice Isn’t As Good As You Believe

4 Surprising Reasons Drinking Fruit Juice Isn’t As Good As You Believe

Whenever we read something about the health of our teeth or how we could lose weight, we see how bad soda drinks are. We’re told that they ought to be replaced by some healthier solutions, like homemade juices using organic fruits and vegetables. When you think about it, it really does sound like a much healthier way of introducing vitamins into your body. There’s nothing wrong with apple juice mixed with orange, cranberry, or blueberry juice. Or is there?

Well, according to some new studies, fruit juices might not be as healthy as we initially thought. The most common problem is that they contain large amounts of natural sugars, which is still bad for you even though they’re from a healthy source. So, what else is wrong with a glass of fruit juice that you yourself squeezed?

1. Sugar is sugar, no matter the source

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Types of sugar

    As I just mentioned, fruits are naturally loaded with a lot of sugar. Typically around 10 per cent of fruit is pure carbohydrates, a fancy name for sugar. It is true that drinking fruit juice will provide your body with many more vitamins and minerals than a typical soda, but this does not mean that the benefits outweigh the downfalls.

    While juices are loaded with antioxidants, which is an extremely good thing since these can slow down the damage done to our body by free radicals, juices usually lack the dietary fiber that is present in the fresh, whole fruit.

    However, if we look at the energy value juice has, it has the same number of calories, or even more, than an ordinary soda drink. This all leads to the conclusion that while fruit juice does have more beneficial vitamins and minerals, because it has the same amount of calories it is not recommended in large quantities due to the risk of developing sugar-related diseases and health issues, such as diabetes.

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    2. Store-bought fruit juice has hidden surprises

    Fresh orange juice

      Processed fruit juice is not as healthy as they want you to think. And it doesn’t matter that the label says it’s 100% natural, or healthy. That doesn’t mean that it doesn’t have some chemicals added to prolong its shelf-life. Simply put, the vitamins in juice deteriorate over time, meaning that the beneficial effects of the fruit juice disappear.

      Also, prolonged storage can diminish the taste of juice. Many manufacturers add flavor packs, which are not counted as concentrates or as additives, despite the fact that they are not commonly present in a juice. Because store-bought juice is stored in an oxygen-less environment, it loses its original taste, which is replaced by flavor packs. It doesn’t even matter if you are paying for a high-quality product; the chances are that it is far from being the same juice you would get if you squeezed oranges in your own kitchen. All those ingredients added by the manufacturers are designed to make the juice seem fresh once you open the bottle.

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      3. The “light, healthy alternative” advertising is misleading

      Juice from various fruits

        Because drinking fruit juice is advertised as a much healthier option, people naturally assume that it has fewer calories and that they can drink unlimited amounts of it without being afraid of negative consequences. We all know that too much of a good thing can also be bad, and this cannot be more true for fruit and vegetable juices. Even if we consume only the juice we prepare at home, without any additional ingredients and sugars added, it is still a calorie bomb.

        Many people mistake juice as a good option for losing weight, while the effects can be quite the opposite. While there are certain combinations of different fruit and vegetables that can be squeezed and used to slightly improve weight loss, you should not go overboard with them or cut out other solid food sources. In order to avoid consuming too many calories, you can add water to your favorite mix to decrease the number of calories per cup, but you should never add honey or white (or even brown) sugar. While your body can tell the difference between different kinds of sugars, ultimately, all it sees are calories.

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        4. Fruit juice is not so good for your teeth

        teeth and smile

          The outer layer of your teeth is the hardest substance the body can produce. This enamel is harder than bones, but still, it is nothing if it exposed to the acids produced by bacteria that feed on sugar. When we drink high-sugar drinks we are soaking every nook and cranny of our mouth in them, which bacteria use to multiply. The simplest solution would be to thoroughly rinse your mouth or brush your teeth right after drinking fruit juice. Brushing your teeth after every major meal is actually what dentists recommend anyway, because you will quickly develop tooth decay if you wait until evening before cleaning your teeth.

          Another important thing to remember is that drinking apple juice is not the same as biting off a piece of apple. Juice lacks the fibers that are present in the whole fruit, which are necessary for proper digestion. Furthermore, chewing an apple will physically clean your teeth and will massage your gums, increasing the blood flow. Your body will expend energy to break a piece of apple down into small bits, and then will use more energy in your stomach to digest those bits. All that is not necessary when drinking already mashed fruit. Make sure to chew your fruit — there are no shortcuts to health.

          This all leads to the conclusion that fruit juice is not really the magical solution that we all hope for, especially if you want to lose weight and maintain good oral hygiene. While it is true that it has more vitamins and minerals than an ordinary soda drink, it also has the same amount of calories, so it’s not really a good substitution. You could prepare a fruit smoothie as a replacement for one meal, or better yet, eat the fruit fresh and chew it.

          Don’t trust whatever you hear on TV: make your own fruit juice at home, where you will be sure that there are no additives hidden behind a 100% natural label. Take care of how much you eat and do not get lulled into thinking that you can drink juices as much as you want. If you are planning on changing your diet, consult a dietitian, as only they can help you find the perfect regimen that will suit your body’s needs.

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          Ivan Dimitrijevic

          SEO Consultant

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          8 Things to Watch for If You’re Considering Being Vegetarian

          8 Things to Watch for If You’re Considering Being Vegetarian

          Vegetarianism has been around for a long time, finding favor with many people, including Pythagoras clear back around 580 B.C. It’s been presented as one of the most healthy diets around, including being touted by the Egyptians to the point of abstaining from meat and animal clothing due to karmic beliefs. The vegetarian society (vegsoc.org) defines vegetarianism as:

          “Someone who lives on a diet of grains, pulses, nuts, seeds, vegetables and fruits with, or without, the use of dairy products and eggs. A vegetarian does not eat any meat, poultry, game, fish, shellfish* or by-products of slaughter.”

          While it’s pretty obvious that there are multiple benefits to following a vegetarian diet, it’s always good to be informed about the cons of this dietary choice as well.

          Outlined below are several things you might want to be aware of before you say good-bye to meat forever. Whether you are a current vegetarian, or contemplating making a shift, keep in mind these 8 things to keep yourself healthy.

          1. You could suffer from B12 vitamin deficiency

          The B vitamins are especially important for stress management, adrenal health, and brain function. Vegetarians in particularly are at risk for B12 deficiency. Vitamin B12 is attached to the protein in animal products and without enough B12 you can suffer from depression, fatigue, and an inability to concentrate.

          Due to its attachment to animal proteins, B12 is the hardest for vegetarians to obtain when they don’t eat dairy or eggs in their diet. This essential little vitamin can be found in some algae and has been added to some yeast, but research doesn’t currently provide enough information to say whether or not these forms of B12 are of good quality and can provide adequate supplementation.

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          The body is unable to make this vitamin, meaning it has to be taken in through food or supplementation. Essential for making red blood cells, DNA, nerves and various other function in the body, a Harvard Health Medical report in January of 2013 found symptoms of a B12 deficiency can present in sneaky ways including depression, paranoia, delusion, and loss of taste and smell.

          2.  You could suffer from higher states of anxiety/depression, lower sense of well-being

          According to a CBS Atlanta report, vegetarians suffered from a higher rate of anxiety and depression than their counterparts. Read the full report here. Depression and/or anxiety can be a result of many possible deficiencies including essential vitamins and amino acids you can find only in meat products, including Omega-3s from wild caught salmon.

          Without the correct supplementation and proper understanding of diet, including the importance of micro and macro nutrients, depression and anxiety can become a serious problem, bringing down the overall health and well-being of vegetarians.

          Even though reports on health and lifestyle show vegetarians have a lower BMI and lower consumption of alcohol and drugs, it also shows they suffer from more chronic illnesses and more visits to the doctor than their meat eating counterparts.

          3. You could suffer from excess weight

          When you go vegetarian it opens up a lot of food, but just because there isn’t any meat in front of you, it doesn’t mean it’s necessary healthy. Though pizza and beer technically fall under the vegetarian diet, it’s not a healthy choice for your waist line.

          Just because being a vegetarian is associated with a healthier lifestyle in many cases, doesn’t mean it’s always true. Making bread and pasta your staples and not understanding where your protein sources should be coming from, can pack on body fat, which increases your chances of health issues such as diabetes and chronic inflammation.

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          If the choice to go vegetarian happens on a whim without the proper understanding of food control, portion, and nutritionally dense alternatives you can find yourself reaching for vegetarian foods, which could cause serious problems down the road. Nuts are a good example, but just because something is touted as healthy, it doesn’t mean, your should eat it in excess.

          Eating too many calories in fat will still cause you to gain weight. Eating too many calories in carbs will cause you to gain weight. Eating too many calories in protein will cause you to gain weight. See a pattern here? Not to mention you’ll miss out on important nutrients the body needs by over-eating in one area and under-eating in another. Re-read number 2.

          4. You could have a higher risk of heart disease

          Eating plenty of fruits and vegetables should be a goal we all strive for, but when you cut out meat, you also cut out what is known as complete protein, which you find in animal by-products. Complete means more than just the essential amino acids, it means those amino acids contain dietary sulfur. Without enough dietary sulfur, which is found almost exclusively in fish and pasture feed grass beef, the body will struggle with the biological activities of both protein and enzymes.

          The effects cascade downward, effecting bones, joints, tissues, and even metabolic issues. In short, a low intake of sulfur associated with a vegetarian diet can result in high blood levels of homocysteine, which may lead to blood clots in your arteries, blood clots raise your risk of stroke and heart attack. To read the full report click here.

          5. You could suffer from low cholesterol

          I know, at first you’re thinking, wait, low cholesterol is a good thing. Yes, it is, when it’s LDL cholesterol, which you get from eating an unhealthy diet, but low HDL (good cholesterol) can cause serious health issues. HDL, according to the mayo clinic, is in every cell in our body and can help fend off heart disease, not enough of it though, and too much LDL can go the other way, will be building up plaque in the arteries and leading to heart disease.

          Cholesterol, the good kind, is actually vitally important to the making of every steroid hormone in the body! There are six, and without cholesterol the body is unable to convert hormones, and it can cause damage in the endocrine system.

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          A vegetarian without a balanced diet, meaning enough protein, enough veggies, and enough good fats, could disrupt his or her adrenals, which are directly connected to the endocrine system and the body’s ability to make and synthesize the hormones your body needs. The six major hormones in the body help do everything from metabolizing carbohydrates, to the electrolyte balance, to making sure if you’re a woman you can carry a healthy baby through pregnancy.

          6. You could suffer from lower bone density and osteoporosis.

          Osteoporosis, the disease where the bones get thinner, weaker, and fractures become a high risk with day to day movements. It’s often associated with the older generation, but your risk for osteoporosis increases with a lower bone density. Bone density can be directly related to diet and lifestyle, along with many other factors.

          When it comes to eating a vegetarian diet it’s possible to miss getting enough of the right nutrients, causing the bones to begin to break down. If your vegetarian diet isn’t balanced and providing you with the correct nutrients and the means to absorb the correct nutrients, your body could begin to break down.

          Recently, Professor Tuan Nguyen of Sydney’s Garvan Institute of Medical Research led a review of both Australian and Vietnamese research around the bone density of vegetarian versus their meat eating counterparts. Helping Professor Nguyen was Dr. Ho-Pham Thuc Lan from Pham Ngoc Thac University of Medicine in Vietnam. The review was designed to sort though years of research surrounded by discrepancies and inadequate clinical data.

          At the end of the review, with vegetarianism rising to around 5% of the populace in the western continents, and with wide spread osteoporosis reports – 2 million in Australia and closer to 54 million in America – the decrease in bone density of vegetarians is a serious issue which needs to be addressed, if you’ve cut meat and animal by-products out of your life.

          7. You could be at a higher risk for colorectal cancer

          Cancer seems to be running rampant through America, and it’s within everyone’s best interest to do all they can to keep their body healthy and happy to prevent cancer from finding a place to grow. In most studies it’s been found vegetarians are at lower risk for cancer, but a European Oxford study with over 63 thousand men and women in the United Kingdom found the risk for colorectal cancer higher in vegetarians than in meat-eaters.

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          Extra care needs to be taken when establishing a diet to ensure the body is receiving and able to up take all the important nutritional benefits and requirements from food.

          8. You could end up eating more processed food

          Depending on how deep you choose to go as a vegetarian, it could create the need to substitute a lot of food and recipe ingredients in your diet, but what happens when you cut out meat, eggs, and dairy and your recipe calls for meat, eggs, and/or dairy? You have to end up using a “healthy” vegetarian alternative which include stabilizers, thickeners, and various other ingredients you can’t pronounce.

          Lauren from Empowered Substance puts it into a great perspective with her comparison of Earth Balance, a vegetarian approved butter replacement compared to butter. She points out the ingredients in Earth Balance consist of: Palm fruit oil, canola oil, safflower oil, flax oil, olive oil, salt, natural flavor, pea protein, sunflower lecithin, lactic acid, annatto color. Meanwhile, the ingredient list in butter, is much shorter. It’s butter.

          That’s only one example. To appeal to the vegetarian lifestyle food manufacturers have found alternatives which fall under vegetarian, but aren’t necessarily healthy for you. Consider baked goods, which though vegetarian can be filled with more sugars and binders than regular baked goods with diary products. It’s the same with vegetarian items like mac and cheese, without using real cheese you may just be getting oil and thickeners, without even the smallest amount of nutritional value.

          The reality is, most vegetarian substitutes contain the same junky alternatives which even meat eaters should be avoiding to remain happy and healthy.

          On one final note, whichever lifestyle you choose to work with, remember anything in excess – including protein and animal by products – isn’t healthy for the body. It takes a wide spectrum of food and nutrients to keep the beautiful body you travel around in all day running in prime condition.

           

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