Yesterday, I saw some people who were smoking while drinking a fruit juice along-with it, Probably thinking that antioxidants from the juices would cut down the harmful effects of smoking. However none of their juice consumption was going to benefit them in any sense. You would be amazed why fruit juice won’t benefit you? They are full of vitamins and minerals, So definitely not with smoking but otherwise they could be healthy for us?
The answer still is NO THEY ARE NOT !!!
Fruit juices are considered healthy because of the word “fruit” in it, However we forget there is a difference in composition of fruit and fruit juice.
When we take the whole fruit, It takes effort to chew and swallow them. The sugar in them is also bound to the fibrous structures that slows the breakdown process during digestion.
It is also very filling so we don’t tend to eat more. As a result, the sugar that is sent to liver to metabolize is in small amounts at a slower rate too.
Whereas in case of fruit juices which are devoid of the fiber, The large amount of sugar get absorbed and sent to liver very quickly. When the liver takes in more sugar ( fructose in case of fruits), More than it can handle, Some of it gets turned into fat. Some of this fat can lodge in the liver & contribute to fat build up and insulin resistance.
Different foods have different metabolic pathways and have different effects on hunger, Hormones and brain centers that control body weight.
In presence of solid calories, Our brain compensates by making us eat less of other foods instead . However in case of liquid calories they don’t compensate by eating less, In turn they make us eat more. It’s not that fruit juices don’t contain anything. They do contain small amounts of vitamins & antioxidants, but that do not make up for the large amount of sugar it has.
Another aspect to take into consideration is the – Surface Area.
Larger the exposed area, The more loss of nutrients from the fruit.. So that’s why also it’s better to eat a whole fruit rather than fruit juice. If it’s a big fruit like melon or papaya which you simply have to cut, Carve it into big pieces rather than the small ones and hold them in your hand and chew properly.
So above I told you about the fresh fruit juices, Now let’s dig inside the packaged, Preserved or 100% fruit juices sold in market. Unfortunately food & manufacturers aren’t always honest about what is in their product. After being squeezed from the fruit, The juice is usually stored in massive oxygen depleted holding tanks for up to a year before it is packaged. The main problem with this method is that it tends to remove most of the flavors, So the manufacturers need to add so called “flavor packs” to bring them back to the original flavor. So even if you are buying the highest quality grade still they are far away from their original state.
In conclusion, Eating a fruit is a way better practice. It retains all vitamins and minerals, Chewing it provides a nice massage to your gums, and the fiber works at cleaning out your cavities and maintain blood sugar.
When it comes to FRUIT- EAT, DON’T DRINK.
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Ratika Vinchurkar is a Clinical and Lifestyle dietitian, currently practicing at RxDx. Experienced in treating nutritionally all kinds of degenerative and lifestyle disorders like Diabetes, Hypertension, Thyroid Disorders, Cardiovascular disorders, renal disorders and other chronic diseases; Her practical approach towards the lifestyle diet modification rather than just prescribing strict regimens endear her to her patients. She holds a master’s degree in Food and Nutrition and favors the theory of “you are what you eat”.