We’ll often give ourselves a pat on the back for switching our kids onto a fruit juice or smoothie when they make demands for a fizzy drink, but it seems we could be doing more harm than good.
According to new findings made by British researchers, some fruit juices and smoothies targeted at children actually contain their entire daily recommended intake of sugar.
To arrive at their findings, the research team looked at the sugar content of ‘100% fruit' juices and smoothies, then calculated the actual sugar levels by analysing the content of ‘sugars added’ (e.g. glucose) and sugars from syrups and other ingredients.
The study findings, which were published in the journal BMJ Open, revealed that almost half of those drinks tested contained the full daily recommended sugar intake for a child living in the UK – almost five teaspoons.
Commenting on the findings, study author Dr Simon Capewell said that many parents are thrown by how these ‘healthy’ drinks are marketed.
“Most people assume, wrongly, that fruit juice is healthy and contains little ‘free sugar’. The ones we tested contained up to six teaspoons of sugar in a standard 200 ml serving, twice the daily recommended limit for a young child,” he said.
It just goes to show that we need to be super-vigilant and informed when doing the weekly shop.