Naked Juice, Green Machine
written by our featured guest blogger Rachel Domingo of www.decEATful.com
background: Juicing was very popular back in the 90s but I think it took off with the documentary/film “Fat, Sick and Nearly Dead”. It’s not too surprising that this hype spread like wildfire because it’s actually common sense; throw a whole bunch of veggies that you hate and don’t eat, throw in an apple or lemon to mask the taste and you’ve got yourself a nutritional powerhouse beverage. Plus, they branded a juicer and published some recipes, so a lot of Americans were hopeful that they too could lose 67 pounds in 49 days. If the NutriBullet didn’t make it easy enough with the speed of a jet engine and dishwasher-safe parts, go figure lazy America would find a way to bastardize this healthy innovative trend and turn it into a processed, bottled, grab-and-go, chemical shit storm!
product: Naked Juice, Green Machine ingredients: they’re listed in the graphic. Take note, the front labels used to say “All-Natural” on the bottle but a lawsuit regarding their mislabeling back in 2013 (here’s my source, a thorough blog post about that) made them remove it because their juice was found to contain several synthetic ingredients, such as Fibersol-2 (a proprietary synthetic digestion-resistant fiber), Fructooligosaccharides (a synthetic fiber and sweetener), and Inulin (an artificial and invisible fiber added to foods to artificially increase fiber content with the typical fiber mouth-feel).My arch-enemy, “natural flavors”, is listed on this. I don’t mean to make you throw up in your mouth but natural flavors can include: “carmine”, also seen as cochineal extract or natural red 4, which is coloring extracted from female cochineal insects. They’re killed by hot water or heat, dried, then their abdomen is extracted and cooked at high temperatures. It’s been used as coloring in candy, sauces, juices, icing.. almost anything red or pink.
While there may not be anything suspicious jumping off this label, do you realize that this contains 28g of sugar per serving (that’s nearly 60g per bottle!) and zero fiber?
deceat! First thing’s first: the parent company of Naked is PepsiCo, which last I checked, has spent 8.8 million fighting GMO labeling. That’s an automatic trip to my shit list. Back to the juice: yes, this is chock full of healthy ingredients and yes, that sugar comes from fruit. However, there is a difference!
On average, a raw apple has 13g of sugar, but it comes with 3g of fiber. Fiber makes you full and helps regulate the absorption of sugar. How many apples can you eat? Two, maybe? Fiber prevents that apple from become a sugar bomb threat because it keeps you from overeating. Well, when you take the juice of something, you don’t keep the fiber. You don’t keep the skin either, which is where most of the nutrients are. It takes my Omega juicer 4 apples to make 8oz (half the size of a Naked juice) and I’m sure you can guzzle down quite a couple of those. Point is – fruit juice is condensed, so it is naturally full of sugar whether it be apple juice, orange juice or this Naked juice smoothie. Also, the portions can easily go over board; do you know what 8oz looks like? It’s not a lot.
bottom line: Don’t seek these as a replacement for water and don’t be fooled by the stupid amount of vitamins and nutrients they advertise. If you’re standing in front of the vending machine, yes, this might be a decent choice compared to Pepsi. But just remember, you’re getting the same amount of sugar (maybe even more). More importantly, this still has calories! I don’t know what it is about advertising that makes us forget things have calories. It’s like this crazy hypnosis where we see “healthy” “electrolytes” “vitamins” “antioxidants” and we’re suddenly guzzling by the caseload, scratching our heads at why we’re gaining weight. I’m so guilty. Anyway, this is not a beverage you should grab to accompany your lunch. Don’t drink the whole thing either, unless you’re out of cocaine and need the rush/crash.
my suggestions: If you have to go store-bought, do the Whole Foods or deli/café option. Opt for mostly veggie smoothies over juices (because smoothies keep the pulp and juice strains it out). Or, stay up til 2am and catch an infomercial for a juicer. Haha, it will make you realize that nothing beats making it yourself, and that it can be so easy, so fast and so healthy! I invested in a masticating style juicer because the lack of heat makes the juice last a little longer, thus getting away with 2 batches a week vs. juicing every day.
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