You may think of juice as all the same. Many ways people differentiate one juice from the other is usually by flavor, brand name, or even price, however, there is more to juice than what you see displayed on store shelves. Even though most juices contain ingredients that are good for you, many are so filled with sugar and artificial ingredients that it can actually be bad for your health.
It’s important to know which types of juice are good for you and which ones to avoid, especially since many people tend to not give such products any thought. One of the most trusting types of juice out there is often labeled 100% fruit juice. This means that the beverage does not have any added sweeteners, which translates as good but the true meaning barely scratches the surface. Juice beverages that are deemed 100% are indeed good but what it also means is that it contains high levels of calories and sugar. Studies show that some fruit juices that are 100% have as much sugar in them as a candy bar. The best way to enjoy this type of juice is to limit yourself to a glass a day. If you’re worried about your sugar and calorie intake but can’t bear to part with your 100% fruit juice, you can remedy the problem by adding water to dilute the juice.
On the flip side, there are tons of juice products on the market that are labeled “juice drink,” “juice cocktail,” and “juice flavored beverage.” These items should be avoided because they contain more calories and sugar - namely high fructose syrup - than actual juice. The amount of juice it does contain is small and not enough to provide you with any essential nutrients. Such beverages are especially harmful for children and are linked to childhood obesity and other health problems.
If you want to do right by your health and your family’s then you’ll want to make the switch from the artificial juice to the real thing. Look for the following types of juice: cranberry, cherry, pomegranate, blueberry, acai berry, prune juice, and orange juice. These particular types of juice are loaded with powerful antioxidants, vitamins, and are naturally lower in calories and sugar, which means you get the best out of the juice’s natural properties than any artificially flavored juice drink. When it comes to orange juice, your best bet is to stick with unsweetened orange juice, which has less calories, however, it doesn’t contain as many antioxidants as regular orange juice. In general, orange juice is still one of the most powerful juice drinks overall.
Concerned about how much juice your children should be drinking? According to pediatricians, children younger than six-years-old should limit their juice intake to between 4-6 ounces per day, while those between ages 7-18 can increase their juice intake to between 8-12 ounces per day.
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