Is Fruit Juice Really Healthy

Is Fruit Juice Healthy or a Problem?

Did you grow up drinking a glass of juice with your breakfast? Perhaps you still drink it, along with your coffee. After all, a glass of OJ means a boost of Vitamin C, right? But is fruit juice really healthy?

I once thought – as you may have – that juice was a healthier choice over sodas and processed sugary drinks. In truth, juice purchased from the store, is quite close to a drink made of liquid sugar.

What’s the Big Deal?

The sugar in fruit is fructose – the same as in the problematic high fructose corn syrup. Despite its natural source, fructose, unless it is wrapped in a whole fruit, is bad news for your body. It is known to contribute to obesity, type 2 diabetes, heart disease, high blood pressure, and cholesterol challenges.

Drinking a 12-oz glass of OJ floods your system with a whopping 37 grams of sugar. The same amount of apple juice brings in 40 grams of sugar, which is as much as the average can of soda. At 4 grams per teaspoon, that’s a lot of sugar.

One of the biggest problems is that fruit juice contains NO fiber and is a concentrated source of liquid sugar/fructose. Juice goes through your digestive system quickly and spikes your blood sugar levels. This contributes to the development of insulin resistance, weight gain and stress on your liver, where fructose is processed. This study demonstrated what is far too common.

How is Fruit Juice Made?

There’s more to producing fruit juice than you realize – it’s not just squeezed right into the carton. Oranges are picked from the orchards and the juice is extracted, heated to pasteurize, and stored in huge vats where the oxygen is removed to extend the storage life. Removing the oxygen removes a lot of flavor, so companies hire chemical engineers to create “flavor packs” that make the juice taste fresh squeezed again. Yuck!

Though you expected to consume vitamins, antioxidants and enzymes in your juice, the pasteurization process wipes these out. Lacking fiber means that there’s nothing to slow the spike of blood sugar or feed your gut bacteria. That’s a problem!

Are There Better Options?

Yes, and they start with the foundation of hydration – water. You can add flavor by infusing your water with slices of orange, lemon, lime or cucumber. I particularly enjoy a glass of sparkling water with a squeeze of lime or a splash of cranberry juice.

And if you need more flavor, try kombucha tea. This fermented tea is low in sugar and high in healthful phytochemicals and gut-healing probiotics. You will find kombucha in the produce section of your grocery store. There are a variety of flavors available and I recommend you look for one with 8 grams of sugar or less.

Is fruit juice really healthy? While you may be shocked to learn that it really isn’t, it’s never too late to edit your approach (where have I heard that before?) and improve the effect on your body. Each edit you make can take you one step further down the path to pursue wellness!

Kelly Lutman Pursue Wellness

Got Milk – Do You Really Need It?

Do you have a friend or family member who follows a dairy-free approach to eating? Does it seem like an odd choice – one that feels slightly un-American? Do you really need milk?

We’ve all seen the “Got Milk” commercials and print ads, and I’m sure you heard your Mom tell you to drink your milk for strong bones. But is milk truly beneficial to your body? Maybe, maybe not.

If have shared about food sensitivities in the past. Some of my clients test positive for allergies or sensitivities, and I recommend that they stop eating dairy completely while we evaluate whether their body is lacking necessary enzymes to digest dairy. Even if they don’t test positive, I may still recommend that they omit dairy for if any of these conditions exist:

Have Allergies, Asthma, or Chronic Sinus

Some individuals are susceptible to an increase in mucus production when consuming dairy foods. This doesn’t happen to everyone, hence the many blog articles you may find that claim this is a myth. But the scientific study I link here shows that it has been clearly demonstrated. The best way I know to determine whether it would affect a person’s body in this way is to eliminate dairy foods for a month and then reintroduce to observe any changes.

Have Estrogen-mediated Cancer

or significant hormone imbalance. Dairy foods are reproductive substances which contain substantial levels of hormones that can cause significant shifts in your own body’s hormone balance. It is best to be mindful of the many outside sources of hormones or substances the body reads as similar to hormones so that we don’t inadvertently contribute to dis-ease.

Have Chronically Loose Stools

This can be caused by your body’s insufficient production of lactase, an enzyme that helps to break down lactose from dairy-based foods. It has been estimated that 2/3 of the world’s population is lactose-intolerant. This can speed the motility of foods through the digestive system, resulting in poor absorption of nutrients.

Have High Levels of Inflammation

Dairy products can increase acidity in the body and stir the fire of inflammation. Already dealing with an inflammatory diagnosis? You can cool the fire by removing all dairy from your diet.

Have Irritable Bowel  Syndrome or Inflammatory Bowel Disease

Those who struggle with IBS or IBD often find that diary-based foods cause flares in their symptoms due to hyper-fermentation of lactose.

Have you been focused on improving your wellness and felt as though you were missing something? I’ve seen simple adjustments like omitting dairy have a significantly beneficial effect.

Granted, an online search will present articles that assure you that dairy isn’t a problem. I would suggest you consider the source of these articles. Perhaps the dairy industry connected to the authors of those articles. Is there a conflict of interest?

Will elimination of dairy work for you? Only way to know for sure is to test it. I must be 100% elimination. Your body is immensely intelligent and knows when you consume even a “taste.” Could you benefit from the support of a coach? I’m here for you.

Kelly Lutman Pursue Wellness

Cooling Concoctions For Your Hot Summer Days

In the heat of the summer, we don’t want to be far from refreshing beverages to beat the heat. Pure water is, of course, the best choice to protect against dehydration, and adding a squeeze of fresh lemon helps you pack even more of a beneficial punch.

But there are occasions when you may want a little something extra, or you’re looking for the perfect summer beverage to serve at your weekend gathering. There are some delightfully refreshing options to choose from. Whether you choose the adult version or leave them kid-friendly, these drink options are sure to please and are easy to make. Read more