The Juicy Truth
You have probably heard that you can get plenty of vitamin C from drinking orange juice. While this may be the case, there is more than a little truth to that. A single cup of sliced oranges contains about 125% of the RDA for vitamin C. In addition, it also supplies some vitamin A, 4 g of fiber, 2 g protein, 17 g sugar, and contains 85 calories. Citrus fruits in general promote collagen formation and help to prevent inflammation, cancer, and cardiovascular disease.
Keep in mind that this is accounting for raw oranges, rather than the actual fruit juice. When considering an 8-oz glass of freshly squeezed orange juice, you’re looking at only 0.5 g fiber, 21 g sugar, and 112 calories. While you may be getting plenty of vitamin C, you are also missing out on a bunch of good stuff. When the fruits are squeezed or processed, most of the fiber is lost, along with many of the vitamins and minerals.
This is not to say that drinking juice is hazardous to your health, but keep in mind that it’s not as beneficial as consuming the fruit itself. It’s still possible to get more than enough vitamin C from other sources such as leafy greens, bell peppers, tomatoes, and a variety of other fruits. But if you are really craving a juicy beverage, try to get one with added pulp for a fiber and nutrient boost!