Science proves that juicing has powerful health benefits, but we’re talking with Dr. Lisa Davis of Pressed Juicery’s Medical Board about how sugar fits into the equation. Learn how a variety of fruit sugars effect the body differently and which juices are better for those living that low sugar life…
If you’ve stopped drinking juice because you’re worried about blood sugar, refill your juice glass and raise a toast: Lower glycemic index juices exist!
Just a generation ago, a glass of juice (usually orange) was an essential part of the breakfast lineup along with eggs, bacon, toast and cereal. Few households were without a carton of orange juice, and few kids left for school in the morning without draining a glass of Florida sunshine.
Then, things changed. People figured out that when you eat an orange, you’re getting the juice of just that one orange — two or three ounces at most. But it takes about three oranges to make one modest cup (eight ounces) of orange juice, and that’s three times the sugar.
Dietary experts began seeing a correlation between high fruit juice consumption and high blood sugar, and started recommending people to step away from the juice and stick to the fruit — the whole fruit, and nothing but the fruit.
The glycemic Index
Compared to whole fruit, fruit juice has a high glycemic index, meaning that drinking it causes a rapid surge in blood sugar. This can be bad news for people with type 2 diabetes mellitus — and also a concern for those who are watching their carbs and trying to stay healthy.
The glycemic index (GI) is a number that indicates how rapidly a food or beverage is broken down (metabolized) and converted into blood sugar — glucose. Refined sugar and starches can have a high GI, whereas complex carbs and foods rich in fiber, protein and fat have lower numbers on the scale.
But, as Harvard Medical School’s health education website points out, there’s another factor that matters at least as much, and that’s the glycemic load of a particular food or drink — the amount of sugar it packs. To understand a food’s complete effect on blood sugar, you need to know both how quickly the food makes glucose enter the bloodstream, and how much glucose it will deliver. A separate value called glycemic load does that. It gives a more accurate picture of a food’s real-life impact on blood sugar.
Unsweetened orange juice (250 ml) | glycemic index of 50, glycemic load of 12
Cranberry juice cocktail (250 ml) | glycemic index of 68, glycemic load of 24 (double the glycemic load!)
Low Sugar Juices Exist
Those who love their morning juice can take heart. There is new data from the University of Sydney, home to the International Glycemic Index Database, which resides in its Human Nutrition Unit at the School of Molecular Bioscience. The Nutrition Unit’s accredited testing facility has found that some of the Pressed Juicery juices it’s tested actually have a reasonable GI of under 20, including:
Greens 1: celery, cucumber, kale, lemon, parsley, romaine, spinach
Greens 1.5: celery, cucumber, kale, lemon, parsley, romaine, spinach, sea salt
Greens 4: cayenne, celery, cucumber, ginger, lemon, watercress
Lemon Cayenne H2O: cayenne, filtered water, lemon
Chocolate (or) VAnilla Almond: almond, dates, sea salt, vanilla bean or cacao
This is great news for healthy-minded people who want to watch their blood sugar while they enjoy the flavor, fiber, nutrients and antioxidant benefits of quality pressed juices.