You may think this is a healthy treat, but experts are warning not to buy it

Health experts are warning consumers against buying into the idea that every smoothie is a healthy smoothie. Research released this
Health

Health experts are warning consumers against buying into the idea that every smoothie is a healthy smoothie. Research released this week revealed that many fruit drinks from popular food chains, like Gloria Jeans and Boost Juice, have more calories than a burger from McDonald’s.

Many of the smoothies are labelled at ‘98% fat free’ and packed with ‘real fruit’, but it’s the huge amount of sugar in each drink that has experts worried. Australians have been flooded with information about health foods in recent years with many of us being told fruit-based smoothies are a healthy option and a great snack to grab on the go. In a confusing move though, experts now say we should be wary of many of these fruity drinks.

A survey of 40 popular smoothies, frappes and shakes from some of Australia’s most popular outlets found Gloria Jean’s 98 per cent fat free Mango Fruzie contained a huge amount of sugar, with a shocking 123 grams or 31 teaspoons’ worth in each serve. The popular drink has nearly double the amount of sugar as a 600ml bottle of Coca-Cola, sending its kilojoule level skyrocketing to beyond that of a McDonald’s Big Mac, which has has 2060 kilojoules.

“Food outlets use phrases like 97 per cent ‘fat free’ or ‘dairy free’ to make their smoothies and frappes sound healthy, but … these drinks can actually do more harm than good,” dietitian Alison Ginn told the Sydney Morning Herald.

“Like with soft drinks and other sugary drinks, regular consumption of frappes and smoothies can contribute to weight gain and a build up of toxic fat around your organs, which increases the risk of type 2 diabetes, heart disease and some cancers,” Ms Ginn said.

Gloria Jeans wasn’t the only chained that suffered a bad review though, with Boost Juice’s Brekkie to Go-Go Super packed with 24% more kilojoules than a Big Mac. In light of this new information, it seems we have to be even more vigilant with our diets than ever before.

Have you bought one of these smoothies before? Are you surprised by how much sugar they contained?

  1. Only solution …….. Don’t eat or drink anything! Or you could be sensible and eat almost everything but in moderation.

    • Yes! I used to be a rowing coach and that’s what I told my athletes. Mind you, hard training every day burned those calories anyway

  2. Alison  

    No I have never before bought any type of these juices/smoothies from anywhere as I know they are loaded with calories and sugar. All fruits except lemons, limes, grapefruit, avocado are acidic when used by the body. So all other fruits should be limited to no more than one piece a day. It is a misnomer that fruit in abundance is healthy because it is not. Going for green drinks with all vegies – no fruit other than those mentioned above – is the healthy way to go. If you want to make it into a smoothie then add advocado and almond milk to make it healthy.

  3. I have never before bought any type of these juices/smoothies from anywhere as I know they are loaded with calories and sugar. All fruits except lemons, limes, grapefruit, avocado are acidic when used by the body. So all other fruits should be limited to no more than one piece a day. It is a misnomer that fruit in abundance is healthy because it is not. Going for green drinks with all vegies – no fruit other than those mentioned above – is the healthy way to go. If you want to make it into a smoothie then add advocado and almond milk to keep it healthy.

  4. I make my own fruit smoothies every day. Just pure fruit and two tbls of plain unsweeted low fat yoghurt. I make up a big bowl of fruit salad using about 6 pieces of fruit and some berries and that lasts me all week. I have worked out the calorie count and fat count. Each smoothie has 70 calories and 2 grams of fat.

  5. I was doing weight watchers, while at the shops thought id puchase a friut juice for lunch. When i got home to check the points of what i had, found it was worth as much as a medium size bucket of chips. But i know it was still the healthier option.

  6. We have been told to eat plenty of fruit and vegetables. I eat 2 or 3 pieces of fruit a day for snacks. So maybe now I am getting too much sugar. Very confused indeed.

    • I think 3 serves of fruit was previously recommended but now it’s changed to 2 . It also depends on whether you are a big or small person ( I don’t mean fat or thin) .

    • I eat at least 3 fruits a day and have been doing this for years. I’m vegetarian so I eat around 5-7 serves of veg too. So far no problems. I get a check up every year.

  7. Brian Lee  

    Everything in moderation is a good rule! Jacqui and I have a smoothie pretty well every morning, but we don’t buy any commercial oddments, as mentioned in the article! Our standard, base smoothie consists of a handful of raspberries, a banana and skim milk, to which we will add celery, cucumber, other fresh fruit such as strawberries, etc., depending on what we have and what we feel like. We also sometimes add yoghurt or ice-cream, when we’re feeling generous towards our bodies!

    • Brian Lee  

      I’m a healthy 81 and Jacqui is a fit 77, so it would appear that our choice of smoothie recipes hasn’t been damaging to us!

  8. I make a point of not drinking juices of any kind as it is much healthier to eat the fruit or vegetable. I think they have their place as there are people that require high calories due to the level of activity, this particularly applies to sport.

    • Most juicers remove the fibre from the fruit so it is better to eat the whole fruit than to juice it.

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