In the past few years, with everyone’s concern for dietary health, homemade juice has become the new trend for a healthy diet. In the extensive publicity, homemade juice is promoted as a “fresh, nutritious, and additive-free” health drink, and has entered the health menu and weight loss recipes.
The illusion that “homemade juice is healthier” comes largely from the comparison with other beverages. Many fruit-flavored beverages taste fruity, but in fact, do not contain any fruit juice ingredients, and most of the color comes from food coloring. Whereas “100 percent fresh fruit” juice, simple, plain, in full compliance with the so-called “health drink” standards. Compared with eating fruit directly, the juice is more convenient, and the homemade process gives the illusion of “squeezing out the essence of the fruit”
The fascination with homemade juice has led many people to use it instead of the fruit itself, and even take the juice as water, however, homemade juice is simply not as good as you think. It is impossible to drink juice and achieve the same effect as eating fruit.
The first and foremost is dietary fiber. Dietary fiber, as a substance that the body can not digest, can play a good role in cleaning the intestinal tract, promoting intestinal peristalsis, to help prevent gastrointestinal system pathologies. Eating fruits and vegetables can improve constipation, the main reason is that they are rich in dietary fiber. After the juice is made, the insoluble dietary fiber is almost all filtered out with the “pomace”. In other words, there is very little dietary fiber left in the fruit, after it is made into juice. Take orange juice, for example, a glass of orange juice contains just less than 10% of the dietary fiber of the original orange.
The vitamin C that the fruit has is also gone. Vitamins, although present in large quantities in fruits are extremely unstable. During the juicing process, the cell structure is destroyed and vitamin C is exposed to light and oxygen, which rapidly oxidizes and loses its nutritional value. The process of juicing may seem like a simple conversion from solid to liquid, but in fact, many nutrients have long been lost. And the most content in the juice is left with water and sugar.
A WHO guideline recommends that adults and children should reduce their daily intake of free sugars (including mono- and disaccharides such as fructose and glucose) to less than 5% of their total energy intake, or less than 25g (about 6 teaspoons) per day. In fact, a 240ml glass of 100% fruit juice contains 20-26g of sugar, which is not much different from the sugar content of a glass of soft drinks of the same volume.
Singapore’s CAN TV has made such a program, respectively measuring the amount of sugar in homemade juice, unsweetened juice, general juice drinks, Coke, less sugar Coke, and chocolate drinks. The result was that Coke topped the list, followed by homemade juice, which contained more sugar than even the ordinary juice drinks sold in the market.
Not only is the sugar content high, but the properties of sugar itself have also changed from fruit to juice. The sugar inside the cells of fruits is called “endogenous sugar”, which needs to be digested and absorbed slowly in the intestine to provide energy slowly and permanently. But fruit juice directly transfers the sugar inside the cells into the water, becoming “free sugar”. This sugar is digested more quickly and can lead to a rapid rise in blood sugar, which greatly increases the stress on the body’s metabolism and can lead to obesity, diabetes, and other health problems. It can even affect life expectancy.
In 2019, researchers from Emory University and Cornell University published a study. Between 2003 and 2007, they studied the food structure and physical condition of over 16,000 elderly Americans, 94% of whom had the habit of drinking pure fruit juice. Their obesity rate reached a staggering 70.6%. A follow-up study of their mortality found that drinking an additional 12 ounces of sugary drinks per day (about 355mL) increased the risk of coronary heart disease-related mortality and premature death by 15% and 11%, respectively. Gout, too, is one of the possible consequences of consuming too much sugar.
The large amount of fructose contained in fruit juices can promote the synthesis of purines in the body and their further conversion into uric acid. At the same time, by inhibiting renal uric acid excretion, it makes the accumulation of uric acid in the body accelerate. In the long run, it may make people suffer from gout, a painful disease. Drinking two sugary drinks a day increases the risk of gout by 85%, and drinking two or more glasses of fruit juice a day increases the risk of gout by 81%.
Homemade juices, which seem to be healthy and nutritious, are actually a potential risky “health killer”. Whether it’s homemade juice or juice drinks in general, it’s better to drink less. They fundamentally belong to the “sugar water” category and can not replace the real fruit. Juice may be more convenient, but it destroys too much nutrition; it may satisfy the illusion of a “balanced diet”, but it increases the burden on the body.