Sugars in children’s fruit juices and smoothies

A study published in the BMJ by Boulton and Hashem et al – How much sugar is hidden in drinks marketed to children? A survey of fruit juices, juice drinks and smoothies:

The difference between whole fruit and fruit juice:

One key difference between whole fruit and juice is fibre content. Whole fruit slows down consumption and has a satiating effect. Research shows the body metabolises fruit juice in a different way compared to whole fruit. After whole fruit consumption, the body seems to adjust its subsequent energy intake appropriately, whereas after fruit juice consumption, the body does not compensate for the energy intake.

And the conclusion? (formatted for readability)

The sugars content in FJJDS marketed to children in the UK is high. Over 40% of products surveyed contained at least 19 g of sugars—a child’s entire maximum daily amount of free sugars.

-We suggest that FJJDS with high free sugars content should not count as one of the UK government’s ‘5 a Day’ recommendations.
-Ideally, fruit should be consumed in its whole form, not as juice.
-Parents should dilute fruit juice with water, opt for unsweetened juices and only give them during meals. -Portions should be limited to 150 ml a day.
-In order to help combat the growing problem of childhood obesity, manufacturers need to stop adding unnecessary sugars and calories to their FJJDS now; otherwise, it will be essential for the government to introduce legislation to regulate the free sugars content of these products.