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Is It Time to Replace Fruit Juice With Whole Fruit?

Choosing fruit juice over whole fruits may harm your health.

It’s not breaking news that consuming too many sugar-sweetened beverages is bad for our health. Now, findings from a large cohort study involving more than 13,000 American adults ages 45 years and older suggests that drinking glassfuls of OJ may not be such a good idea either. As reported in JAMA Network Open, for each additional daily 12-ounce serving of fruit juice consumed, there was a 24% increase in the risk for all-cause mortality.

The evidence, although only suggestive, makes a strong case for eating most of our fruit servings in their complete form (i.e., apples instead of apple juice), since the whole fruit delivers less sugar and more fiber. Although the sugar in 100% fruit juice is naturally occurring rather than added, it will still flood the body with a rush of sugar, which may lead to metabolic issues over time.

Matthew Kadey, MS, RD

Matthew Kadey, MS, RD, is a James Beard Award–winning food journalist, dietitian and author of the cookbook Rocket Fuel: Power-Packed Food for Sport + Adventure (VeloPress 2016). He has written for dozens of magazines, including Runner’s World, Men’s Health, Shape, Men’s Fitness and Muscle and Fitness.

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