Daily fruit juice - is it really heart-healthy?

Regularly drinking fruit juice is not as good for you as once thought

Fruit juice is high in sugar without the fibre and nutrients of whole fruit. Regularly drinking juice could be bad for you and a new study has shown that a daily juice could increase risk for heart disease.

Excess sugar is associated with higher blood pressure but it is not clear if fruit juice, a source of concentrated sugar, could act just like refined sugar and raise blood pressure as well. So to find out a research group examined the association between fruit juice consumption and blood pressure in a group of adults.

Daily fruit juice drinkers had significantly higher central systolic blood pressure when compared to people who reported drinking fruit juice occasionally or rarely.

Central blood pressure is the pressure in the aorta of your heart and is more strongly related to heart disease than traditional blood pressure measurement. Elevated central blood pressure is important because it is “associated with adverse health outcomes such as cardiovascular events and mortality as well as impaired brain function,” point out the researchers involved in the study.

Although this was a relatively small pilot study and the first time a relationship between fruit juice and central systolic blood pressure has been observed, it does raise concerns about negative health effects of a daily fruit juice.

A fresh orange provides 12 grams of sugar and 3 grams of fibre while in contrast a small glass of orange juice gives you a quick hit of 21 grams of sugar and 0.5 grams of fibre.

Reference:

Pase MP, Grima N, Cockerell R, Pipingas A. Habitual intake of fruit juice predicts central blood pressure. Appetite. 2015 Jan;84:68-72.

My tip: It is always best to eat the whole fruit rather than the juice as the fibre slows down the rate at which the sugar hits your bloodstream.  Commercial orange juices can contain pesticides and moulds, creating an uhealthy breakfast cocktail!

Original article care of Benjamin Brown, ND. ©2014 Time for Wellness. Visit: www.timeforwellness.org

 

Posted: Feb 4, 2015