Posted on May 04, 2021
Sweetened versus unsweetened juice drink. Fruit juice drink that promotes zero cholesterol. With so many available variants in the market, perhaps you wondered about the right kind of fruit juice to buy. Is fruit juice healthy? Is fruit juice the same as whole fruit?
I am also a consumer, like you, particular of the commercial fruit drinks displayed on the grocery shelves. Occasionally, I prefer to buy the unsweetened apple juice over other variants because it’s the only taste that soothes my palate.
On this topic, as your Nutritionist-Dietitian, I will answer some of your confusions about commercial juice drinks.
1.) Is there a difference in the nutrient content of fruit juices versus whole natural fruit?
Whole natural fruits, e.g., cantaloupe, citrus fruits, papaya, are a great source of vitamins, fibers, phytochemicals, and the mineral called potassium. Whereas fruit juices contain traces of fiber, can be adulterated with flavorings, water, and sugar, with a possibility of having less nutrient content. That’s because nutrients in fruit juices may be destroyed or lessened during the processing period. Although fortified or nutrient enhanced fruit juices may be available in the market, nothing is comparable to the nutrient benefits, which you can get from eating natural fruits.
2.) How to choose a healthy juice when grocery shopping?
Read the food label. Make sure it does not contain water, flavoring, or sugar. Choose the 100 fruit juice brands. If better, buy unsweetened juice products that are either vitamin-fortified or enriched.
3.) What is the difference between a fruit juice drink and a natural raw fruit?
It's the same.
A nutritionist-dietitian includes a fruit juice drink as a fruit substitute in your meal plan. It does, however, matter in nutrient quantity. The retailed juice drink has inferior quality than the natural fruit sources.
Contact your nearest nutritionist-dietitian if you want a lifestyle-tailored meal plan.
A standard one serving of unsweetened fruit juice is one-half cup. Each one-half cup of fruit juice drink has 15 grams of carbohydrates, 0 gram of protein, and 0 gram of fat. Moreover, per one-half cup serving of unsweetened fruit juice has a total of 60 calories.
Unless there’s oil or animal fat in the ingredient, fruit juices have zero cholesterol and zero fat.
Thus, do not be fooled by brands promoting juice products with zero cholesterol and zero fat. Fruit juice is a plant food source, which naturally has no cholesterol content.
Alternatively, granting that it is on retail, some plant foods have fat content, e.g., coconut, avocado, durian, nuts.
Read Label: Commercial fruit drinks may contain glucose or sugar as an added ingredient compared to juice products with fruits or fruit concentrate and water only.
6.) Is fruit juice gluten-free?
All fruits are gluten-free, except if there's gluten contamination during food processing.
For menu variety, unsweetened fruit juices can be a part of your balanced diet meal plan. Talk to your nutritionist-dietitian to know more about diet meal plans.
You can also create homemade fruit juices sourced from natural fruits. For caloric-counting awareness, use simple ingredients when making fruit juices at home. A sample recipe below:
8.) Fruit Juice for Weight Loss, is there such a thing?
You can lose weight simply by drinking fruit juices alone, aka juicing. But it is not healthy. Remember that fruits have carbohydrates content only with 15 grams per standard size serving.
You need macro-nutrients from protein and fat to sustain life. The best lifetime diet to maintain and achieve your ideal body weight is a balanced diet.
Seek the help of a nutritionist-dietitian to enjoy the art of food in your diet journey.
Informed Consumer: An example of a juice product with added glucose and food flavors (L) compared to a juice drink with fruit and antioxidant (R) in the ingredients.