OJ – Not for women?

August 29, 2008

This is OJ as in juice, not as in Simpson, because starting the day with a glass of orange juice is seen as healthy habit, high in vitamin C and good for you. However, there are some reasons you might want to switch to another juice in the mornings – particularly if you are a woman. Recent research suggests that drinking orange juice frequently may put women at an increased risk of developing type two diabetes – a serious and debilitating disease that becomes progressively more common with age and obesity.

This is yet another study from the US, the home of OJ as they refer to their juice, and was done at Tulane University School of Public Health, in New Orleans. Over 70,000 women enrolled in the study, and dietary and medical records were analysed with these results:

Diabetes risk is LOWERED by 18% if the subjects added three daily servings of whole fruit because this slows down the rapid absorption of the natural sugars found in fruit as the fibres take longer for the stomach to digest. If you add in just one additional serving of leafy green vegetables then the risk was LOWERED AGAIN by 9%

Diabetes risk is INCREASED by 18% if one additional daily serving of orange juice is taken. This is because the natural sugars in juice are absorbed too rapidly in the stomach, causing a surge in blood sugar levels. Since the research was carried out only on women, it is not yet known whether men are at the same risk of getting diabetes if they drink orange juice. BUT, drinking large quantities of neat juice is not something to recommend as you are getting a large sugar load in one hit comes and because it comes in a liquid form it is absorbed rapidly into the body. People are not always aware either, that many types of fruit juices like orange, grapefruit and grape, contain as much sugar per serving as many fizzy drinks. That amount of sugar will help you put on weight, and that is another factor in promoting diabetes.

A couple of suggestions are either to cut your juice with water about 50/50 or switch to apple juice and cranberry juices – real juice, with bits and no added sugar because they have a much better sugar/nutrients ratio than citrus and grape- based juices.


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