In the old days (when your parents were your age), there were only a handful of juices on the market. You'd find the basics: orange, apple, grapefruit, pineapple, cranberry, and grape juice. Today supermarket shelves and vending machines are bursting with fruit beverages and blends. But not all juices are created equal. Some are nutritious
, while others deliver a lot of calories
and sugar. back to top
Are all juices nutritious?
Drinking fruit juice is part of a healthy diet, as long as you don't overdo it. Think of how many pieces of fruit it takes to make one glass of orange, pineapple, raspberry, kiwi or lime juice. That's why a single glass of orange juice has twice as many calories
as an orange. Of course, there are times when you're hungry and in a hurry, and fruit juice gets the job done. Juices made from fruit also provide vitamins
, and phytochemicals
your body needs. back to top
Are fruit drinks the same as fruit juice?
Don't be fooled by packages that seem to promise fruit and nothing but fruit. Look for the words "100 percent fruit juice" on the Nutrition Facts label
. Only these beverages are made entirely from fruit. Fruit drinks and fruit cocktails usually contain added sugars that replace fruit nutrition with empty calories
. back to top
Should I drink enhanced juices?
Beverages that have added nutrients
like protein can be part of a healthful diet
. But these drinks may lack important vitamins
that 100 percent fruit juice contains. Some people believe that adding certain herbs and supplements to fruit juices
can have health benefits like preventing colds. back to top
Are energy or sports drinks better?
You're heading straight from school to basketball practice and you want a boost of energy. Do you reach for a sports drink containing carbohydrates
, water, and electrolytes
? You've been hiking with friends for several hours. Will a sports drink help replace the energy and water you've lost? Maybe. But drinks packed with protein
and vitamins generally do not deliver on their promises and may even taste bad. Drinks with herbal extracts
could contain unnecessary or even dangerous stimulants
is probably the only energy drink you'll ever need. And it's free! back to top