You’re staring at the juicer parts sitting in your sink because you didn’t get to clean them after the last juice-making session. Or, maybe you’re wishing you had a juicer to make your own juice blends.
No matter what: if you want to get a fix of important daily nutrients, then buying healthy juice may be one of the best ways to consistently include them into your diet.
Fruit juices are thought to be a good way to get all the goodness our body needs in one helping. However, it’s not as simple as picking up the first bottle off the shelf. Is fruit juice as good for you as you think?
The answer is: most likely not.
In some cases, juices aren’t as good for you as they make out on the packaging. So what do you need to know about choosing healthy juices in stores?
Here are seven tips for what to look out for when you’re buying healthy juice.
1. Know the difference between 100% fruit juice and a fruit drink.
Ensuring fruit is contained within store-bought juices may have been all you thought you needed to know about selecting a healthy drink option. But did you know that you are being fooled?
Check the details on the packaging to find out whether it is 100% fruit juice, or if the juice is mixed with high fructose corn syrup. While it may be more appealing for the taste buds to have the added sugar, it does less for you health-wise.
Pure fruit juice contains more of the essential nutrients needed for your body to function well. The corn syrup on the other hand, is filled with unnatural elements.
2. Find out how much sugar is actually contained in the juice.
As mentioned, some fruit juices do contain loads of added sugar. While a small amount won’t cause you harm, it’s always worth knowing how much is in each bottle.
Many fruit juices are made with just 10% of pure natural fruit juice, meaning they’re severely lacking in nutrients. Read the label and nutritional ingredients carefully!
Most fruit drinks contain far more sugar than you would expect. Drinking this type of fruit drink regularly can negatively impact the:
- Health of your teeth
- Production of insulin
- Nutritional benefits on the body
You may be turned off by purchasing cans of carbonated soda due to the amount of sugar included (around 12 teaspoons, to be precise). But, did you know that some fruit juices contain just as much sugar?
Find out the sugar content when buying healthy juice, to avoid being tricked into choosing a product that’s not as healthy as you believe:
3. Alternate fruit or vegetable juice with other drinks.
Even when you select the healthiest packaged drinks, it’s always good to alternate with other beverages to achieve a healthy balance. Although fruit juice provides a number of health benefits, it would be wise to stick to one glass per day due to the acid.
After a glass of fruit juice, it would be wise to drink herbal teas, fruit teas, or even a glass of milk. You should be drinking around 7-8 glasses of water each day too, as recommended by health professionals. Water helps purify the skin, clean out toxins and hydrates you.
4. Be wary of fruit juice snacks.
Although many supermarkets sell candy-style fruit juice snacks, these aren’t a good alternative to buying healthy juice. Steer clear of these if you’re looking to get the essential nutrients into your child’s diet. Many of these products contain ridiculous amounts of sugar and unnatural ingredients and flavorings.
If your kid is fussy and refuses to drink fruit juice, there are a number of sweet treats available to buy that contain these nutrients. Be sure to do your research beforehand and compare the packaging to see what’s best.
5. Be wary of the lack of fiber.
During the juicing process, those essential fibers found in fruit are removed or broken up, and these are an essential part of our diet. Most of the sugar in fruit is fructose; but sugar doesn’t cause harm to the body as it is mixed up in fiber when we consume a piece of fruit.
The reason why a piece of solid fruit is so good for us is because the sugar contained is absorbed by the fiber. As a result, we don’t experience health issues.
Fruit juice is a completely different story. The fiber contained within the fruit before blending gets removed during the blitzing process, unless it has been directly squeezed into cold pressed juice.
When buying healthy juice, opt for juices that have been freshly squeezed.
6. Substitute whole fruits for juice as a healthy snack alternative.
Fresh fruit is much lower in calories and has greater nutritional value than many fruit juices in the supermarkets. However, that doesn’t mean all fruit juices are a bad choice.
Select fruit juices with packaging that states they have been squeezed from the pulp.
As mentioned above, the fiber within the juice is the most important nutrient of them all. It promotes intestinal health and leaves you feeling fuller for longer, so you don’t up snacking throughout the day.
This means it will be a great snack alternative for the kids when they get hungry, but it wouldn’t be wise to serve too regularly.
7. Look for the ‘not from concentrate’ label.
One of the signs to look out for when buying healthy juice is ‘not from concentrate’ on the label. This factor ensures that the fruit juice you’re purchasing is created with pure pressed fruit, with no added preservatives.
Finding juice that’s ‘not from concentrate’ can be more difficult than you may have originally thought. You may need to do a little bit of searching to find a juice option that falls into this category.
Concentrate juices are far more common when the brand of juice is produced in foreign countries which is something else to be aware of, so try and find juices that have been manufactured in the USA.
Buying healthy juice – which of the healthiest store bought juices do we recommend?
If you’re still a little unsure on the fruit juices you should be purchasing from your local store, we have put together a useful list of the best juice brands on the market that you can pick up with confidence:
The dark purple colored fruit juice is filled with antioxidants that flushes out the system from any harmful toxins which make you feel tired, drowsy or lacking in energy. This juice is made with 90% beetroot and contains dietary nitrate which is broken down to Nitric Oxide (NO) within the bloodstream.
Nitric Oxide boosts stamina to give you bursts of energy. It also increases the level of oxygen in the body; so it’s the ideal fruit juice to drink before you exercise.
Have you ever had a heavy night out and feel a little worse for wear the next morning? Or, perhaps you’re suffering with an upset gut from a food that didn’t agree with you.
This juice is one of the best on the market to perk you up and give you that zest for life again. This liquid is made up of filtered water, ginger juice, honey and lemon juice. All of these are vital ingredients to get you back on your feet.
One of the most popular branded fruit drinks to look out for when buying healthy juice is ‘Naked’. Each of their products are created with delicious fruit and vegetables so you are sure to get your five-a-day.
The brand produces both juice blends, smoothies and the healthiest green juice named ‘Green Machine’. All of these are loaded with essential vitamin C that contributes to the protection of cells and reduces stress levels.
The juices also contain Vitamin B12, which allows the nervous system to function to the very best of its ability.
If you’ve never heard of Ocean Spray – where have you been? This brand of healthy packaged drinks has been in production since the 1930s. The brand still hires over 700 farmer families to carry out the tradition of harvesting cranberries to create these pure fruit beverages.
The brand sells 100% juice drinks; most of which are purely cranberry based. Yet, there are particular products that offer mixed fruit blends if you wish to vary your options. Their range not only covers juices, but also cordials, sparkling water and sauces.
Since 1842, Motts has been in production and is one of the most popular fruit drinks brands in the world. They produce a whole range of 100% juice products in a variety of flavors.
Participants buying healthy juice claimed that Motts’ apple juice was ‘refreshing’ and ‘juicy’.
When buying healthy juice from a store, what is your favorite?
Share in the comments below!