Ask the Expert: Juices and Juicing

The Physicians Committee
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Ask the Expert: Juices and Juicing

Q: How do fruit and vegetable juices compare to eating them whole? 

A:  One-half cup (4 ounces) of juice can be considered the equivalent of a single serving of fruits or vegetables. As a rule of thumb, it’s important to shoot for consuming at least 3 servings of fruit and 4 servings of vegetables every day. However, since juice is not as high in fiber as whole fruit or vegetables, it's always best to consume the whole food whenever possible. It has been shown that diets higher in fiber are not only beneficial for protecting against a number of cancers and chronic illnesses, but also help you fill up so that you don't "fill out"—and maintaining a healthy weight is yet another way to ward off cancer.
Juicing fruits and vegetables can be a great way for people who don’t enjoy eating lots of fruits and vegetables to bring these healthy foods into their routine—and the juicers that keep the fiber in the foods are best. Or, the fibrous end-product that juicers produce can be re-used (instead of discarded): shredded carrot roughage makes a salad topping, for example, or can be thrown into soups, stir-fries, or pasta sauces.