Stop giving your kids juice.

Once upon a time, juice was the king of healthy drinks – what could be better than a nice glass of OJ with your breaky? Healthy vitamin C, thiamin, potassium and low in fat and sodium.

Now we know better. Or some of us do. I am surprised at how the science of sugar and what it does to our bodies is not commonly known. So I thought I would develop an infographic which might help people understand and make better choices for themselves and their families.

After reading a lot of literature on the subject I am astonished at how ugly the truth really is. Scientists studying this believe the sugar industry is where the tobacco industry was 20 years ago. There is a lot of data and misinformation is out there about sugar. The sugar industry is well aware of the science, and marketing campaigns are out there to try to muddy the waters.

The tobacco industry has been turned on its head over the last 20 years, but I believe it will be a lot longer before the same regulation and information is available for sugar. Sugar is ingrained in our culture, it’s part of every celebration we have – Halloween, Easter, Christmas, Birthdays.

So let’s look at sugary drinks first. And I’m afraid that includes juice.

Fizzy drinks and juice are in fact needless items in our diet. While the World Health Organization has recently dropped its sugar intake recommendations from 10 percent of your daily calorie intake to 5 percent, it’s well regarded by scientists and dietitions that there is zero requirement for sugar in our diets. The WHO recommendation for an adult of a normal body mass index (BMI), equates to about 6 teaspoons – or 25 grams – of sugar per day. A 375 ml can of coke (that’s the small one) has 11 teaspoons of sugar, and it might surprise you to know that the equivalent quantity of orange juice has 12. But not only that, the sugar contained in orange juice is half fructose which is the big killer. Take a look at the infographic below (or download here). Love to hear your comments.

infographic

References

http://www.health.harvard.edu/heart-health/abundance-of-fructose-not-good-for-the-liver-heart

http://www.medscape.com/viewarticle/777692_2

http://www.cbsnews.com/news/world-health-organization-lowers-sugar-intake-recommendations/

R.H. Lustig, “Fat Chance: the bitter truth about sugar”

R.H. Lustig et al., “ The Toxic Truth about Sugar”

V.T. Samuel, “Fructose Indused Lipogenesis: From Sugar to Fat to Insulin Resistance,” Trends Endocrinol.