The Worst Beverages To Cut Out This Summer—They Lead To Glucose Spikes And Weight Gain: Fruit Juice & More

someone buying fruit juice
someone buying fruit juice

As the temperatures rise and the sun shines brighter, nothing beats the refreshing taste of summer beverages. From fruity iced teas to frosty lemonades, the options are endless and tempting. However, amidst the array of tempting choices, it’s crucial to be mindful of their impact on our health. Many summer beverages, laden with sugars and syrups, can lead to glucose spikes and wreak havoc on weight loss goals.

We spoke with registered dietitian Krutika Nanavati to learn about two seemingly healthy beverages to quit because they can lead to weight gain if consumed excessively and also cause glucose spikes. She revealed that fruit juice and store-bought smoothies are the ones to avoid. Read on to find out why.

Fruit Juice

Fruit juice, often perceived as a healthy beverage choice, can sometimes be a hidden culprit in causing glucose spikes and contributing to weight gain. While fruit juices contain essential vitamins and nutrients, they are also concentrated sources of natural sugars, lacking the fiber found in whole fruits. This lack of fiber can lead to rapid spikes in blood sugar levels, followed by crashes that leave us feeling hungry and craving more food. Additionally, the high sugar content in fruit juice can easily contribute to an excess of calories, leading to weight gain over time.

Nanavati reveals that "despite their healthy image, many store-bought fruit juices are laden with added sugars, similar to or exceeding the sugar content in sodas. The lack of fiber in these juices leads to rapid absorption of sugar, causing sharp spikes in blood sugar and facilitating fat storage around the midsection."

It's important to consume fruit juice in moderation and opt for whole fruits whenever possible to mitigate these effects and maintain a balanced diet.

Store-Bought Smoothies

Many store-bought smoothies are made with fruit juices, frozen yogurt, or sweetened yogurt as their base, which are all sources of concentrated sugars. These sugars can cause a rapid increase in blood glucose levels when consumed, leading to spikes in insulin production to process the sugar. Some store-bought smoothies may contain added ingredients such as syrups, sweeteners, or flavorings, which can further increase the sugar content and calorie count of the beverage.

"Smoothies can contain large amounts of sugar from fruit juice, syrups, sweetened dairy products and other ingredients," Nanavati warns. "The sugar content in smoothies can cause a rapid rise in blood sugar levels." Noted!

Opting for homemade smoothies made with whole fruits, vegetables, and sources of protein and healthy fats can be a healthier alternative.