Why Fruit Juice Ain’t That Much Different Than Fruit Loops

A recent article published on Today talked about a class action suit that claims the food corporation that owns Welch’s Fruit Snacks, Promotion in Motion, has been deceiving consumers into thinking their fruit snack products are healthy (shocker, right? J)

This lawsuit may have larger implications here though. Think about how many processed junk food snacks show bright, colorful fruits on their package and say things like “made with real fruit!”—even though that “real fruit” only makes up a fraction of what’s in it.

sugar in orange juiceSo while we’re on the topic of fruit, I’ll go out on a limb and say there’s really not a whole lot of difference between fruit snacks, Fruit Loops, and fruit juice.

Yes, I said fruit juice—the same stuff the USDA claims counts for a serving of your daily fruit and vegetable intake.

Here’s my beef: fruit juice just isn’t the same as eating a whole piece of fruit.

A study published in the British Medical Journal found drinking fruit juice was associated with an increased risk of type 2 diabetes.

Susan Jebb, a government advisor and head of the diet and obesity research group at the Medical Research Council’s Human Nutrition Research unit at Cambridge University, said, “Fruit juice isn’t the same as intact fruit and it has as much sugar as many classical sugar drinks.”

While I have no problem with people who make their own fruit and vegetable juices at home with their juicers, the bottom line is the small amounts of vitamins and antioxidants in most juices don’t make up for the large amount of sugar in them.

Your best bet if you’re craving something fruity is to eat a whole piece of fruit or toss a whole piece of fruit in your blender with a smoothie. But as the old saying goes, common sense ain’t always so common.

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