Researchers have tackled the pervasive myths of juice-related health benefits in a study published Monday in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology. In an attempt to cut through the confusion surrounding research on nutrition, the study authors reviewed existing reports on various fad diets looking for any sign of actual benefit. Many of these popular dietary choices are supported by the “evidence” of a single study or two, meaning the results haven’t been replicated by enough scientists to be taken as truth. Others are based on industry-funded studies that are likely biased or are based on research that relied on self-reported surveys, where folks are known to lie about—or simply misremember—their eating habits.
Unsurprisingly, the cardiologists focused on the effects of fad diets on heart health. But let’s be real: if your diet is bad for your heart, can you even pretend it’s “healthy”? Nah.
Juicing was called out for its tendency to sneak extra sugar—and calories—into your diet. When you juice a fruit, you remove the healthful fiber contained therein. You’re basically just drinking sugar water with some vitamins in it. You’d be better off eating a few carrots and apples than drinking a whole grocery cart worth of fruits and veggies in one sitting.
“There are things that you’re going to have in the whole fruit that you can’t get into the juice,” Keith Ayoob of the Albert Einstein College of Medicine, who wasn’t involved in the new study, told ABC. “Also the other side is to remember that your gut is a great juicer, it just works more slowly. Let your teeth and digestive tract do what it’s supposed to do. And the fiber in fruits and vegetables is critical to a healthy diet.”