Orange juice, cranberry juice, apple juice—they sound like
they should be good for you. After all, they come from natural fruits, right?
But is fruit juice really a brain healthy beverage, or is it bad for your
brain? It’s time to separate fact from fiction once and for all.
Fact: Fruit juice typically contains a paltry amount
of vitamins and antioxidants. Conversely, it packs way too much sugar and too
many calories—as many as some sodas—to be good for you. Did you know that you
have to squeeze about 5-8 oranges just to get one 8-ounce glass of juice? And
it can be loaded with over 20 grams of sugar, which causes your blood sugar
levels to spike then plummet.
Fact: Even juice that has pulp has only a negligible
amount of the healthy fiber you find in whole fruits. Without the fiber that
typically slows the digestion of that sugar, you’re giving your system a
straight shot of sugar.
Fact: Some people confuse grape juice with resveratrol,
a compound found in red wine and grapes that appears to have cardioprotective
and anti-inflammatory effects. Resveratrol may also be found in tart grape
juice, but you would have to drink many glasses to reach the recommended
supplement dosage of about 15mg twice a day. Plus, most people do not like the
taste of unsweetened, tart juice
Fact: There are so many better options for hydration.
Just cutting out sugary drinks and fruit juices can cut an average of 400
calories a day from the typical American diet. Eliminating that extra 400
calories a day can make it easy for you to lose weight if you necessary. If you
love the flavor of juice, try adding a few fruit slices to a glass of water. It
will add flavor without all the sugar, and it will make you feel like you’re at
The only time I use any fresh-squeezed fruit juice is when I’m making a salad dressing or sauce for veggies. I typically use about a tablespoon of lemon juice or I might squeeze half an orange—not even close to a full glass of juice. For an example, you can check out my Sautéed Cauliflower with Lemon Basil Dressing in The Brain Warrior’s Way Cookbook.
Look for more tips on healthy eating in The Omni Diet—you can get 21% off with the promo code TANA21—and on my website.