Blood glucose and insulin levels are unaffected by regular fruit juice consumption Some health professionals feel cautious about recommending fruit juice to their patients as many believe that that consuming fruit juice can induce a “sugar spike” and affect blood sugar and insulin levels. However, the majority of the research says otherwise and a 150ml portion of pure fruit juice can be incorporated safely and easily into a healthy diet. A recent systematic review published in the Journal of Nutritional Science has collated information from 18 randomised controlled trials involving healthy, obese, and diabetic participants. The results showed that drinking 100% fruit juice for a minimum of two weeks had no significant effects on fasting blood glucose or insulin levels, when compared with control groups, and that 100% fruit juice has a neutral effect on glycaemic control. 1 One possible reason that the researchers cite to explain this effect on glycaemic control is that the polyphenols contained within fruit juice could even favourably affect glucose- insulin regulation, possibly by inhibiting glucose absorption, stimulating insulin secretion, activating insulin receptors and glucose uptake by cells, or modulating cell signalling pathways and gene expression. 2 Dr Sarah Jarvis comments on these findings: Fruit juice continues to drive interesting debate among healthcare professionals. At a time when the country is failing to meet the five-a-day target, we as GPs should always offer advice on how this quota can be met and I welcome findings that offer patients variety in five-a-day options. is important) but it also contains key nutrients including vitamin C, folate, and potassium. 4 150ml of pure fruit juice also counts as one of your five- a-day. 5 It’s also key to point out that pure fruit juice contains no added sugar, it is simply fruit that is juiced. ” This research demonstrates that fruit juice is safe for people with or without diabetes when consumed in the recommend portion size of 150ml daily, as part of a healthy diet. Fruit juice has a neutral effect on the glycaemic index and pure orange juice in particular is low on the glycaemic index. Diabetes UK advises that 150ml of fruit juice can be part of a diabetic diet, provided patients are mindful of their carbohydrate intake for that meal. 3 Dr Sarah Jarvis has recently participated in an on-demand webinar with Professor Johan de Rycker, Associate Professor in the Department of Information and Communication Sciences in Brussels. The video is hosted on Practice Nurse’s website and offers a CME accreditation for ongoing learning. Please share with the nurses in your practice who may want to learn more about the evidence that supports the nutritional benefits of fruit juice – which will help both you and your nurses to answer patient’s questions with scientifically-supported answers. To view visit practicenurse.co.uk “ “ There is a need to communicate to patients that yes, fruit juice does contain naturally occurring sugars (hence why the 150ml portion message “ If you would like to keep up to date with the science surrounding fruit juice then sign up to our quarterly newsletter Juice Nutrition News - then go to: bit.ly/2jrwkMs Murphy MM et al. (2017) 100 % Fruit juice and measures of glucose control and insulin sensitivity: a systematic review and meta-analysis of randomised controlled trials. Journal of Nutritional Science 6 (e59): 1-15. [ 1 ] Hanhineva K, Torronen R, Bondia-Pons I, et al. (2010) Impact of dietary polyphenols on xcarbohydrate metabolism. Int J Mol Sci 11, 1365–1402. [PMC free article] [PubMed] [ 2 ] diabetes.org.uk/guide-to-diabetes/enjoy-food/what-to-drink-with-diabetes/ fruit-juices-and-smoothies. [ 3 ] UK Department of health. Nutrient analysis of fruit and vegetables. Available at: https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/ file/167942/Nutrient_analysis_of_fruit_and_vegetables_-_Summary_Report.pdf. [ 4 ] [ 5 ] https://www.nhs.uk/Livewell/5ADAY/Pages/Whatcounts.aspx.