Sugar in fruit juice as bad for you as in soft drinks

Sugar in fruit juice as bad for you as in soft drinks

Sugar in home-made fruit juice, bought fruit juice or fizzy soft drinks is equally linked to an 18% increased risk of cancer according to research from Inserm, the French National Institute of Health and Medical research.

Dr. Mathilde Touvier who led the research team said that cutting down on sugary drinks together with taxes on sugar and restrictions on marketing was the way forward. She also emphasised that the issue was not cutting them out completely, more that you should restrict yourself to less than one glass per day, which is the recommendation of several French Health Agencies. Concerns over cardiovascular disease and cancer were stressed.

The research studied the effects of equal amounts of fresh fruit juice and fizzy soft drinks in more than 100,000 people over a 5 year period. The average age of the study was 42 with 79% female. Per 100 ml, the levels of contained sugar are roughly equal, with approximately 10.3 gm per 100 ml of fresh fruit juice; with bought juice/smoothies and fizzy soft drinks being slightly higher at 10.9 gm.

The increased incidence of cancer was equal for the different groups consuming the sugar from whichever source, at 18% overall and 22% for breast cancer. However, those consuming diet (non-added sugar) drinks had no apparent increase.

The researchers conclude that the involvement of sugar in increasing cancer risk was plausible, as another recent study had shown the effects of sugar consumption on visceral fat around organs such as the liver and pancreas, in inflammatory processes and on heightened blood sugar levels.

The research was reported in this week’s British Medical Journal. A spokesperson for Cancer Research said the study was large and well-designed but said that more research was needed before they could say that sugar consumption increased cancer risk.

Chris Woollams, former Oxford University Biochemist, who first wrote '20 links between sugar and cancer’ from research available as long ago as 2010 said, “There are several important points to make here.

First, the fact is that non-sugary drink consumption did NOT cause any increased risk. Sugar lay behind the 18% risk. Cancer Research UK are in denial for reasons best known to them, at the same time as telling overweight people to lose weight!.

Secondly, the researchers argued that fresh fruit juice gave a sugar hit because it is in a ‘free’ form, which is rapidly absorbed by the body. However, there was merit in eating the fruit whole as the fibre and vitamins were beneficial and the sugar would be in a slow release state.

Finally, as anybody who has had a Personal Program from me will know, we have been telling people exactly this for a decade or more. We suggest non-starchy vegetable juices, with plenty of inflammation-controlling fresh ginger in them. The science is very clear on this, if people want to read it. We never suggest people put fruit in their fresh juices, and we’d rather see smoothie blends containing fibre than 100% pure juice.”

Go to: 20 links between sugar and cancer

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