Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Those sweet fruit juices


Researchers said that fruit juices should be taken off the five-a-day recommendations.
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Most health guidelines encourage people to consume drinks such
as orange and apple juice in order to have a healthy balanced diet yet ignore dried fruits.
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But the findings of two teams of British researchers turns that advice on its head – concluding that fruit juices should be avoided and dried fruit consumption encouraged.
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The first study found that even freshly squeezed fruit juices can contain as much as five teaspoons of sugar per glass because the squeezing process concentrates their sweetness.
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This is around two-thirds of the amount found in a can of soda and can contribute to obesity and also disturb blood sugar levels and the body's natural metabolism, the study found.
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Researchers said that the juices should be taken off the five-a-day recommendations so that people are encouraged to eat whole fruits and vegetables instead which have far more nutrients per calorie.
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Dr Hans-Peter Kubis, Bangor University in North Wales, said that the fruit juices could encourage a "sweet tooth".
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I'd question the wisdom of including fruit juice in the five-a-day message.," he said
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The problem is people often substitute them for real fruit which is a mistake.
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Fruit juice is higher in sugars than people realise and they are likely to encourage drinking too much sugar.
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He suggested that one part of fruit juice should be diluted with four parts of water in order to make them more healthy.
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In the second study, partly conducted by the University of Leeds, researchers found that dried fruits contain just as many antioxidants, polyphenols and nutrients as normal fruit.
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It found that dried fruits can help combat cancer, metabolic disease and heart problems.
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They are also a good source of fibre, vitamins and minerals.
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The researchers have called for advice to encourage people to eat more of the dried fruit and for them to be included in the five-a-day messages
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Professor Gary Williamson said that dried fruits were often overlooked because people assumed they were too tasty to be good for you.
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We are not saying you should get all five of your five-a-day from dried fruit but you could definitely get at least one.
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Some fruits including dried fruits contain high levels of a variety of polyphenols and we are just starting to understand their health protective effect.
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Professor Daniel Gallaher, of the University of Minnesota who was also involved, said: "Dried fruits are great sources of total and soluble fibre in the diet."
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Richard Alleyne

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