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Today's 1% Change: Don't Get Juiced

June 30, 2017


A friend of mine was telling me that he’d had three kidney stones recently so he’s changed the way he eats and pretty much eliminated grains and sugar. He’s lost 11 pounds in the last few months, which is awesome.


But then he said he was drinking orange juice every day because his doctor told him that citrus can help prevent kidney stones from forming. I said, “You do realize that orange juice is almost all sugar, right?”  “Well,” he said, “It’s natural sugar.”


This is something that juice companies have done great job of marketing...“Natural sugar.” But your body treats sugars the same whether they’re natural or added sugars. Yes there different types of sugar and your body digests them differently… Fructose, the most dominant sugar in fruits, is processed by your liver and is more likely to contribute to fat gain than dextrose. But your body breaks down all complex sugars and carbs into simple sugars. To your body, sugar is sugar. Natural or not. And juices are loaded with sugar. 


A cup (8 ounces) of orange juice? 21 grams of sugar. That’s more than 5 teaspoons of sugar. The sugar in the same amount of Coke? 6 teaspoons.


If you want to add more citrus to your diet to prevent kidney stones, squeeze a lemon or lime into a cup of filtered water. And don’t add sugar.


In general, avoid juices. They have almost as much sugar as a can of soda. In some cases more because those sneaky fruit juice companies sometimes add sugar to something that’s already sweet.  


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