The Juice PR Machine

The Juice PR Machine

How scared is the juice industry? Nothing wrong with their making a critique, just remarkable to see what lengths they will go to squelch dissent.

From the resistance… a letter received from the Juice Products Association:

It’s a trend we are all seeing – more and more studies are being conducted and published without pre-specified analysis. Researchers test connections unsystematically and publish only positive results. Our standards for how we conduct and communicate nutrition research to the public are slipping.

Last week a study was published, by the British Medical Journal that suggests that drinking 100% juice is linked with an increased risk of cancer.  As you know, a person’s health is dependent upon the totality of their diet and lifestyle – not one specific food or beverage.  Studies such as this one do not prove cause and effect yet that is what headlines scream.

Furthermore, these results contradict several other studies, including large U.S. cohort studies, concerning 100% fruit juice consumption and cancer, which shows no association with increased risk. In fact, 100% fruit juices contain bioactive compounds that have been shown to have anti-carcinogenic properties in some studies, (Veselkov et al. Scientific Reports. 2019;9:9237).  

There were a number of limitations with the NutriNet-Santé study published last week.  These include, but are not limited to:

  • The study is observational and, as such, is unable to show cause and effect, only associations.
  • The study was based on a French cohort and not representative of US culture, dietary patterns and eating styles.  It is also not indicative of typical consumption patterns seen in the United States regarding sugary drink consumption.
  • Much of the data was obtained through self-reporting, which introduces errors
  • The mean follow-up time (about 5 years) is very short for a cancer study
  • These results cannot be applied to a general population as the cohort was overwhelmingly female (almost 79%)

Together, we can make our voices heard against bad science. I am commenting on news coverage regarding this study in order to educate the public and consumers who are confused about nutrition. I urge you to join me in speaking out against studies like this that are not based on scientific best practices and cause unnecessary consumer confusion.

For more information, visit SipSmarter.org. Please don’t hesitate to contact me directly if you have any questions, concerns, or need any other information.  I would be happy to discuss.

Sincerely,

Diane Welland MS, RD

Juice Products Association

www.sipsmarter.org

 

What about fruit juice?

Fruit Juices Are Basically Just Liquid Sugar

Fruit juice products are exploding and it seems like most people believe fruit juices are healthy…they come from fruit, so they must be OK?

Unfortunately, many of the “fruit” juice products you find in the supermarket aren’t even fruit juice, just fruit flavored beverages imbued with chemicals that taste like fruit. Many of these products are basically fruit-flavored sugar water.

Even if you’re drinking 100% fruit juice (organic, natural, made in your own juicer, blah, blah, blah), it is still a problem. Fruit juice often has had the fiber taken out or destroyed and the main thing left is the sugar, now concentrated. Despite their healthy image and brilliant marketing, many fruit juice products contain the same amount of sugar as sugar-sweetened beverages.

A typical glass of orange juice contains 4 oranges. One serving of orange juice (an 8-ounce glass) contains 22 grams of sugar. By comparison, 8-ounces of Dr. Pepper (pick your soda) contains 27 grams of sugar. 

One simple solution is not to drink your calories. Eat whole fruit – with the fiber. Try “spa water” recipes that use small amounts of fruit for flavoring. And when you absolutely need some juice, than make it a small glass.

How many oranges have you consumed in one sitting? The fiber in whole fruit increases satiety and also helps to metabolize the sugar in healthy ways. Since our diet is already so overloaded with sugar, big blasts of sugar tend to be bad for our metabolic health.

Review of Processed Food Study by Kevin Hall

Review of Processed Food Study by Kevin Hall

Review of recent study published in Cell Metabolism:

Ultra-Processed Diets Cause Excess Calorie Intake and Weight Gain: An Inpatient Randomized Controlled Trial of Ad Libitum Food Intake. 
 
Published:May 16, 2019
DOI:https://doi.org/10.1016/j.cmet.2019.05.008

Comments by Dr. Robert Lustig

A calorie is a calorie is a calorie; eat less and exercise more; any calorie can be part of a balanced diet. These are the mantras of the processed food industry. But are they real or fake news?

Hall and his NIH group attempted to answer this question with a 2-week crossover demand feeding study comparing the effects of real food (NOVA system class I, developed by Monteiro et al at the University of Sao Paolo) with ultra-processed food (NOVA system class IV). Hall locked up 20 subjects at the NIH Clinical Center, threw away the key, and fed them in random order and for 2 weeks at a time an ad lib processed food diet (more carbohydrate, less fiber) or an ad lib real food diet (less carbohydrate, more fiber). The two diets were matched for presented calories, sugar, fat, fiber, and macronutrients. Hall tracked food intake, body weight, energy expenditure, and baseline and glucose-stimulated hormonal parameters.

The ultra-processed food diet resulted both in weight gain and 508 calories per day greater intake (mostly carbohydrate) than the real food diet, which resulted in weight loss. The only things that distinguished the ingestion patterns were higher carbohydrate and less fiber in the ultra-processed diet. Finally, body weight changes correlated with changes in energy intake.

Bottom line: like other studies which preceded it (eg, the DIETFITS study), this study shows that real food works, and processed food doesn’t — take it to the bank. Real food resulted in fewer calories consumed, but we can’t infer that the effect was due to increased fiber (fewer calories absorbed); decreased energy density; reductions in carbohydrate; reductions in insulin and changes in leptin signaling; feeding the microbiome; and/or increased satiety.

And what about the food industry’s real versus fake news? Can we discern if, and which, macronutrients are the bad guys? What really reduced caloric intake? Unfortunately, this study was not designed or powered to assess whether certain macronutrients (like starch, fat, fructose) altered food intake apart from its caloric equivalent. Hall is a thermodynamics guy—and a calorie is always a calorie. So, don’t expect any other seminal answers out of this one.

Commentary originally published in PracticeUpdate! 

https://www.practiceupdate.com/content/ultra-processed-diets-cause-excess-calorie-intake-and-weight-gain/84403/65/8/1 

Citation:

Lustig RH. Ultra-Processed Diets Cause Excess Calorie Intake and Weight Gain: An Inpatient Randomized Controlled Trial of ad Libitum Food Intake. PracticeUpdate website. Available at: https://www.practiceupdate.com/content/ultra-processed-diets-cause-excess-calorie-intake-and-weight-gain/84403/65/8/1. Accessed July 11, 2019 

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