Kids aren’t the only ones who have trouble eating their vegetables — adults are struggling, too. Two studies show drinking vegetable juice may be a simple way for people – of all ages – to increase their vegetable intake and help manage their weight – two areas of concern outlined in the recently released 2010 U.S. Dietary Guidelines for Americans. Researchers attribute the results to the ease and convenience of vegetable juice as a way to get more vegetables.
One study conducted by researchers at the University of California-Davis found that adults who drank one, 8-ounce glass of vegetable juice each day, as part of a calorie-appropriate Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension (DASH) diet, got nearly twice as many vegetable servings a day than those who did not. Another study from Baylor College of Medicine shows that overweight individuals with metabolic syndrome who drank one to two servings of vegetable juice as part of a calorie-appropriate DASH diet lost more weight compared to non-juice drinkers. In addition to weight loss, the vegetable juice drinkers had significant increases of vegetable intake, vitamin C and potassium over the course of the study compared to the non-juice drinkers.
The new U.S. Dietary Guidelines report also reinforces the need for Americans to achieve and sustain a healthy weight. Current data shows that 64 percent of women and 72 percent of men are overweight or obese. Eating more vegetables can be a helpful strategy to manage weight because they are “low-energy-dense,” meaning they have more nutrition for fewer calories.
Both studies were randomized controlled trials, each lasting 12 weeks. The studies were supported in part by Campbell Soup Company and by resources provided from University of California-Davis and Baylor College of Medicine.