Whole fruits or fruit juice? Which one is better for your health
Fruits have been proved to bring a large amount of nutrition to our body and to be able to avoid many diseases including heart disease and diabetes. If you do not like eating fruits, fruit juice is usually the best alternative. However, despite the convenience and good taste, you are also missing certain nutritional elements from whole fruits.
Loss of fiber
Fruit pulp and skin, existing in most fruits, are the main source of fiber and many other nutrients like vitamin C and flavonoids. But the process of juicing removes most of it, leaving the juice coming out with little nutrition value. This is why you can always see “pulp added” on the package of many commercial products, though most of the time that doesn’t necessarily mean the original pulp found in the whole fruit. To offset the loss of fiber, you can also have enough vegetables to help you meet the daily recommended servings of these two food groups.
Increase of sugar
Because of the loss of fiber and a broad range of nutrients, sugar becomes the primary element in fruit juice which is very easy to digest and metabolize. For instance, 120 calories of apples contain about 24 grams of sugar, but the same calories of apple juice reach up to 30 grams — If you are drinking fruit juices bought from the supermarket, the figure is even higher for their added sweeteners. Additionally, due to fast absorption, you will frequently experience a spike in your blood sugar level, which may in turn, leads to more frequent eating and a higher risk of developing type 2 diabetes.
In a word, if you are going to get your daily dose of fruit, whole fruits are more recommended than fruit juice. But if you really don’t like eating fruits, or just prefer to drink juices, follow the advice below.
Use a blender, rather than a juice extractor. An auger-style juicer or a juice extractor can strain out most fiber and possibly other beneficial substances. In contrast, a blender will retain everything.
Not to add sugar to your juice. The fruit itself contains natural sugar which is good for your health, but adding any artificial sugar may increase the risk of obesity, diabetes, and heart disease.
Ensure intake of multiple nutrients. Drinking only juice for a long period will put you under the risk of deficiency in many key nutrients, such as protein and fats. You can eat as much as meat, dairy products, and veggies to make up for that.