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    Archive for the ‘pomegranate juice’ Category

    In The News: Exotically Expensive

    The Center for Science in the Public Interests’ Nutrition Action newsletter is one of my favorite publications.

    I received the January/February issue in the mail yesterday and wanted to share a “right on!” tidbit on exotic juices from a larger feature article on health claims and juice.

    The article begins by asking, want to make a million dollars?”

    It then instructs readers to “find an exotic fruit,” “turn it into juice,” attribute extraordinary healing powers” to it, and then “get Whole Foods to carry it and charge what the market will bear.

    This last point is expanded upon even further.

    “Don’t be shy. Start with four or five times what regular juices go for,” they advise.

    The article makes the excellent point that the antioxidants and phytochemicals billed so highly in these juices can be found in those of more conventional (and less expensive!) fruits’.

    Yes, I am aware that acai juice contains the highest antioxidant levels of any fruit.

    That alone, however, is not necessarily a testament to it being “healthier” or “better”.

    CSPI took a look at the research backing up these products and found that with both acai and goji berry juice, “not a single study published has looked at whether people who drink it are any healthier than people who don’t.

    As far as pomegranate juice is concerned, they refer to a preliminary study done by the University of California in Los Angeles in which 46 men consumed 8 ounces of pomegranate juice for three years.

    End result? 38 of them had their PSA (prostate specific antigen) levels — rising levels “can indicate a growing tumor” — slowed down.

    However, the folks at CSPI are quick to point out that “the study didn’t include a placebo group.” Oops!

    The article does not mention noni juice, another supposedly miraculous beverage that supposedly helps with everything from impotence to arthritis to Alzheimer’s, if you believe the press releases.

    No need to fork over $40 for a 32 ounce bottle, though, since no studies have shown any health benefits from drinking noni juice.

    Besides, I remember trying noni juice several years back and thinking I had accidentally poured myself a glass of red wine vinegar. It’s absolutely repulsive.

    If it is health benefits you seek, you’re better off biting into a real piece of fruit (anything from a peach to a blueberry to a kiwi or even a handful of goji berries — your choice!) than downing most store-bought juices.

    No matter how exotic, many contain added sugars.

    And, while some foods are certainly healthier than others (and offer unique combinations of key nutrients), I don’t believe in the concept of “miracle” foods.

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