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Why drink 100% fruit juice?

While official guidelines differ from country to country, in general, national guidelines follow WHO advice to eat at least 400g of fruit and vegetables per day; in countries such as Germany and the UK, this has been translated to eat at least 5 portions (‘5 a Day’).1,2

100% fruit juice counts towards these five portions in many European countries and a glass a day (between 150-200ml) can count as a portion of fruit intake. There is yet no scientific consensus on the perfect portion size of 100% fruit juice: EUFIC states that “On average, a portion of fruit is equivalent to an 80g serving. One portion of fruit is, for example…a glass of 100% fruit juice.” 3

Only one glass (one portion) can count towards your 5 a Day. Your other portions of fruit and vegetables should come from whole fruits.

Unfortunately, at this time, most people in Europe do not eat anywhere near the recommended minimum 400g/5AD, and removing fruit juice from the equation only results in far fewer people reaching this healthy goal. In fact, drinking fruit juice daily helps increase your fruit and vegetable intake.4 100% fruit juice is a convenient, delicious way to get a serving of fruit into your diet, complementing whole fruit and vegetable consumption as research shows:

  • People who drink 100% fruit juice eat more whole fruit and vegetables.5
  • 100% fruit juice complements rather than replaces whole fruit and vegetable intake.4
  • 100% fruit juice can help children become used to the taste of fruit and vegetables which may lead to long-term positive health choices.5
  • Amongst 2-5 year old children, 100% fruit juice is “an important source of potassium and magnesium and has been positively linked to achieving recommended intakes of vitamin C and folate.” 6

 

 

REFERENCES:

1. WHO, 2014, Fact sheet N°394.
Available at: http://www.who.int/mediacentre/factsheets/fs394/en/

2. NHS UK. 5 A DAY: what counts?
Available at: http://www.nhs.uk/livewell/5aday/pages/whatcounts.aspx

3. EUFIC (European Food Information Council) “On average, a portion of fruit is equivalent to an 80g serving. One portion of fruit is, for example…A glass of 100% fruit juice”
Available at: http://www.eufic.org/page/en/page/FAQ/faqid/What_is_a_portion/

4. Gibson, S. Fruit juice consumption in the National Diet and Nutrition Survey (NDNS 2008-2010): associations with diet quality and indices of obesity and health. Proceedings of the Nutrition Society 2012, 71, pp. E23.

5. CREDOC. Comportements et consommation alimentaire en France 2010. Enquête CCAF 2010. 2010.

6. Fulgoni V and Quann E. National trends in beverage consumption in children from birth to 5 years: analysis of NHANES across three decades. Nutrition Journal 2012, 11:92.
Available at: http://www.nutritionj.com/content/11/1/92.

7. Image credits: Jannis Brandt

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