Fruits and vegetables are not the same as juices made from fruits and vegetables. Fruits and veggies are high in fiber. In juice, fiber is usually absent. The fibers found in fruits and vegetables are an essential part of what makes them healthy for us. They prevent the shock of instantaneous release of the natural sugars found in fruits and veggies into our blood stream. Instead, the release is gradual. Foods high in fiber also fill us up, acting like an appetite suppressant. In contrast, juices and sugar stimulate appetite, not a good idea if you’re trying to lose weight.
A recent CBC article stated that drinking ‘pure’ orange juice has the same effect on our blood sugar levels as eating candy; high in sugar, both are a shock to our pancreas, and can lead to insulin exhaustion, a precursor to diabetes. Both are also associated with obesity and hypertension. It’s no wonder that Canada’s food guide now recommends drinking plain water as the beverage of choice.
Of course, the food industry is fighting this change in the Canada Food Guide. Last year the Canadian Beverage Association (funded by Coca-Cola and PepsiCo) tried to make its case to federal ministers and decision-makers over 50 times.
So, is Juice Good for You?
As far as vegetable juices are concerned, juicing your veggies can give you a whole lot of variety that you may not be able to eat in a single meal. Some people may dislike eating vegetables and therefore, a part of their daily intake of veggies can be had in the form of a wholesome juice. Carrot juice, beetroot juice and spinach are all options. However, the case of low fiber remains the same. Whole vegetables are definitely still healthier than juicing them.
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