Many people believe that drinking fruit juice is beneficial for health. On the other hand, many others believe that eating the whole fruit is better than consuming juice. We looked over various medical journals available on the Internet and came up with some facts related to fruit juice and whole fruit.
Drinking fruit juice may or may not be the same as eating whole fruit depending on person to person. Both contain an equal amount of nutrients. The juice of the fruit contains a chemical called phytonutrients. It beneficial to human health and helps prevent cancer, osteoporosis, cataracts and other life-threatening diseases. The whole fruit contains fiber which keeps the digestive system tip-top.
The Good Things About Fruit Juices.
The fruit loses fiber when made into juice. However, consumption of fruit juice brings instant energy to the body. Fruit juice increases interferons – a special group of ‘signaling proteins’ made and released by host cells in response to the presence of several viruses. Also, it contains antibodies that aid in boosting the immune system. The natural sugar present in the juice, helps remove uric acid and other harmful chemicals from the body. Thus, keeping your body energetic and fresh throughout the day.
Nutritionists recommend preparing juice at home than purchasing those sold in packaged containers or made by shop owners. The preservatives and other ingredients added to the packaged juice only reverse the health benefits of both, fruit and juice. Also, fruit juice available in shops has more water and you are deprived of the full nutritional value of the fruit.
The Bad Things About Fruit Juices.
It is not always true that a juice prepared from two or more fruits will benefit your body. For example, fruit juice prepared using grapes, apple and orange is a big no-no to those who have heart-related problems.
These fruits reduce the effect of prescribed medicines. This holds true for various combinations of fruits and medicine.
If you prefer drinking mixed fruit juice, it is best to start with 100 ml of juice. Then, you can increase consumption by 50 ml each day. Note: Don’t consume more than 400 ml of mixed fruit juice per day. Also, it is best to drink different fruit juice every day. This will ensure that your body fat does not increase and your body receives a variety of nutrients.
Fruits are rich in sugar. Hence, drinking ‘too much’ juice will cause loose motions and other gastric problems. Some fruits like cherry, green apple and apple contain sugar like Sorbitol which can cause nausea, gas, diarrhea, stomach cramps or anal irritation.
Packed juice made from such fruits contains a high amount of refined sugar which is very harmful to patients of diabetes. The body takes less time to absorb fruit juice as compared to the whole fruit. That is why the sugar level increases rapidly when we consume fruit juices. Also, the fiber present in the flesh of the fruits is removed from fruits which are used to prepare packed juices. Some fruit flesh also contains nutrients that prevent the body from cancer.
In general, the human body responds the best when they receive foods close to how they appear in nature.
When you take a food that exists in nature and refine it (juicing is a form of refinement), there are two results:
- Removal of certain elements.
- The remaining elements become more concentrated.
Both of these usually end up being problematic.
In the case of juice, the thing that gets removed is fiber. The fiber that exists in whole fruit acts to counterbalance the fructose that exists in the fruit. Fiber slows and to a certain extent prevents the absorption of fructose.
The other thing that happens is what is left over becomes more concentrated. When you drink fruit juice you end up getting way more fructose than when you eat fruit.
Fructose is metabolized exclusively in the liver which was never meant to handle the amount of fructose that we are now able to ingest in such a short period of time.
Too much fructose transforms into fat when absorbed too quickly, leading to fatty liver disease, visceral fat around the organs, obesity, type 2 diabetes, metabolic syndrome, etc.
That’s not to say that you should never drink fruit juice, but it’s best to choose whole fruit instead and to view juice as more of a tasty treat like soda and less healthy food.
Alternatives to fruit juice.
It is better to prepare smoothies if you must put fruit in the glass. Smoothies contain more fiber than straight fruit juices because they are prepared by blending fruits rather than juicing.
Smoothies have broken fibers which slows down the absorption of sugars in the bloodstream. Also, a smoothie will keep you fuller for longer and can make for a quick and tasty way to start your day. Be mindful that, depending on their ingredients, smoothies can also contain high levels of fats and sugars.
Other alternatives include fruit-infused water, iced tea(home-made), and coconut water.