Most people who are cognizant of all the disadvantages inherent with excessive intake of soda and carbonated drinks, often turn to juice boxes and packs as an alternative as they try to completely defeat the habit. People would also much rather give their children juice packs because they perceive them as healthier alternatives. They are not completely wrong as juice packs do contain significantly lesser amount of sugar than soda, but they may not be as healthy as you allow yourself to think.
A new study has found that a single serving of some fruit drinks including juice packs and smoothies contain an entire day’s sugar allotment for a child. The report was published in the journal; BMJ Open and the researchers got their results from analysis of the sugar content of 100% fruit juices, bottled smoothies and other juice drinks that are marketed to children. In essence they checked the sugar content whose adverts were tailored directly to net children and they calculated the amount of “free sugar” in each drink.
Free sugar was defined as the amount of sugar added by the manufacturer which includes glucose, fructose and sugars in items like honey or syrups. Natural sugars found in the whole fruits or vegetables were exempted from the calculations. They discovered that almost half of the beverages contained 19 grams or almost five teaspoons of sugar which is a full day’s recommended maximum intake of sugar for a child in the U.K where the study was conducted.
They also found that the smoothies tested had up to eight teaspoons of sugar in a standard serving. The researchers who also attested that many of the juices used artificial sweeteners without any calories, write in the journal; “Although replacing sugars with non-caloric sweeteners may lead to improved markers of long-term metabolic health and weight loss, it will not necessarily provide a long-term solution to reducing sugar consumption and subsequent health problems,”.
So as always whole fruits and vegetables still stand as the healthy choice for you and your child. With even the most “true-to-promise” fruit juices, the loss of the healthy fiber contained in the actual fruit, that is meant to slow down the absorption of sugar, make them a less healthful choice.
See Also: 5 Healthy Smoothies To Boost Your Day