Is there too much
sugar in juice?
As a juice cleanse company one of the main things we get asked is “are your cleanses high in sugar?” At the moment there is a bit of a backlash against sugar in the media and when we had a bit of a root around on google we noticed that a lot of people are googling whether juice is actually good for them because it’s “as high in sugar as a can of coke.”
Well we wanted to set the record straight and reassure you that there’s a huge difference between our juices and the juice you might buy on the supermarket shelves which is 100% fruit juice and fruit purée.
HERE FOR THE HEALTH
The first thing to mention is that the Presscription goal is to promote health and vitality through the use of functional, cold pressed juices that are 80% vegetables and 20% fruit, that’s if there’s even any fruit present. Many of our juices are 100% vegetables. We don’t base our juices on apple or pear, and we always use far more vegetables than we do fruit. This is because, although fruit is incredibly good for us, often it’s the leafy greens and hard core green veggies that are the powerhouses of nutrition and contain the valuable minerals and vitamins that we want to harness for our cleanses.
Moreover, we like to add really functional ingredients into our cleanses like dandelion, aloe vera and alfalfa sprouts, to name a few, and once we’ve blended these with our base of root veggies or leafy greens if we add any fruit at all it’s as an afterthought to adjust the flavour.
The Presscription Blood Sugar Balance Cleanse (as seen above) is a great way to help balance your blood sugar. It contains functional ingredients such as cinnamon and cherry extract which actually work to level blood sugar and curb your cravings. If you're the type of person that's always up and down energy wise, then this is the cleanse for you.
SUGAR IS NOT THE DEVIL
Now that you know the composition of our juices let’s discuss why sugar is not the devil after all. Our brains actually run on 100% glucose as their preferred source of fuel and if the glucose supply is low in our diet then our bodies have to convert proteins and fats into glucose, which it can do, but it’s a much more energy wasting process. Let’s not forget that all carbohydrates, whether that’s brown rice or white bread, are made up of sugars that, when digested, are broken down into their component parts and released into the blood. So, after we eat any form of carbohydrate (fruit, bread, pasta etc) our blood sugar will inevitably rise. Again, this is completely normal and our body has mechanisms and ways of bringing this blood sugar back to the resting level. Problems arise when we stimulate our blood sugar to spike too often - caffeine, sugary snacks throughout the day and carb heavy meals all contribute to a rollercoaster blood sugar level that can leave you feeling worn out and constantly tired.
So, all sugars eventually have the same effect in our bodies in terms of blood sugar, but there are many other factors at play.
THE COST OF BREAKDOWN
In order to break down sugar the body needs a certain amount of enzymes, vitamins and minerals to act as co-factors. If you eat a chocolate croissant then your body invests its own stores of nutrients to help break it down. If you drink a juice or eat a piece of fruit it already comes with the nutrients needed to successfully metabolise the sugars it contains, so the cost on your body is greatly reduced.
There are a few factors which help to slow down the breakdown and release of sugars in something we eat in order to protect us from massive fluctuations in our blood sugar (sugar rush and sugar crash!). The presence of fat and fibre are two such things. So for example, when making a smoothie adding a spoonful of nut butter is a great idea.
Fibre in fruit is not only there to provide benefits to our digestion and our gut bugs but also to help slow the release of the fruit’s sugar. We know what you must be thinking at this stage...there’s no fibre in juice right? Well, there’s no insoluble fibre but the juice still retains its soluble fibre - wahoo. It is actually the insoluble fibre that fills you up and takes a lot of effort to break down. What's important to remember here is that our juices are 80% vegetables and 20% fruit anyway, so they tend to be quite low in sugar regardless.
The second important point is that if you are undergoing a juice cleanse in order to give your body and your overworked digestive system a rest, then the presence of fibre is contradictory to this process. The great thing about juices is that they still contain so many beneficial nutrients, minerals and vitamins just without the bulky fibre. So for the short duration of your cleanse when you want to reset and rest your body and let energy that would usually be spent on digestion go elsewhere, to improve detoxification for example, then a juice is the way to go.
Let’s not forget that fruits and vegetables are nature’s little miracle workers, and that we need as many antioxidants and nutrients from them that we can get these days as we live in polluted cities and deal with high levels of stress on a daily basis.
IT’S NOT BLACK AND WHITE
So hopefully you can see that the situation is not black and white, and that actually a healthy, balanced diet rich in vegetables and fruit is a sure fire way to maintaining good health overall. As long as the juice you’re about to drink isn’t 80% apple juice, then there’s no need to feel bad about some fruit sugar, a whole host of beneficial nutrients and a hefty dose of hydration.