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Innocent Smoothies, too much fructose?

Answered on August 19, 2014
Created September 09, 2010 at 8:39 AM

Here in London (maybe the rest of the UK as well) we have this brand of ready made smoothie which you can buy in a small bottle or a larger carton.

Usually fruit juice and smoothies are not really seen as a good idea because of the larger sugar hit you get from them than would otherwise be the case if you ate fruit whole

Here are the ingredients in a typical bottle:

1/2 apple 1/2 banana 5 grapes 1/2 strawberry 1/2 blackberry 4 boysenberries 1/4 Orange 1/2 blackcurrant A squeeze of lime No additives or preservatives.

At the moment I only drink one every once in a while (maybe once a week) or if I have a carton at home I'll take a few gulps every day for 4 - 5 days.

How much would you need to drink in order to be getting too much fructose. 1 per day?

Now according to their site they fly this stuff in from all over the world... so the carbon footprint is probably high as well.

154bf5c84f7bd9f52b361b45d05dbc3a

(1215)

on September 10, 2010
at 10:17 AM

I guess its just a time / effort / money thing. Its cheaper to buy a ready made smoothie than to get the individual ingredients. And since I work for myself every minute is precious to me. I guess having it once in a while won't hurt me.

154bf5c84f7bd9f52b361b45d05dbc3a

(1215)

on September 10, 2010
at 10:14 AM

I've checked the website FAQ, it seems that the fruit is transported by land and sea. So even if it is chilled, refrigerated or has something else done to it, it's not any different from the whole fruit you find in the supermarket in that respect.

154bf5c84f7bd9f52b361b45d05dbc3a

(1215)

on September 10, 2010
at 10:10 AM

What do you mean by 'never air freight ingredients'? I think the website says that the fruit comes from various countries around the world.

154bf5c84f7bd9f52b361b45d05dbc3a

(1215)

on September 10, 2010
at 10:09 AM

Hey Eva, The innocent website specifically says that they don't heat or otherwise prepare the fruit, it has a very short shelf-life because of this. But I guess fruit, even off the shelf has some kind of preservative or something done to it. Nothing grows 'natural' any more.

21fd060d0796fdb8a4a990441e08eae7

(24543)

on September 09, 2010
at 02:28 PM

Could a smoothie actually absorb slower than eating fruit? Here's my line of thinking. The gut absorbs fructose faster with glucose in cotransport. If some of the smoothie fruits have a high fructose:glucose ratio, fructose may be left sitting in the gut if transporters can't handle the fructose load. Technically, this isn't a slower rate of absorption, but it is a longer overall time of absorption.

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4 Answers

best answer

4
1c4ada15ca0635582c77dbd9b1317dbf

(2614)

on September 09, 2010
at 08:42 AM

Innocent Smoothies are delicious. But, as you indicate, you are getting a lot of fructose in one hit. They are pure fruit and a bit of orange juice, so at least it's 'real food' - but I definitely wouldn't have them (or certainly not very often) if I was trying to lose weight.

If not trying to lose weight, keep as an occasional treat. Better to buy that list of fruits and eat them as they are, rather than drink the liquidised version.

best answer

2
9d43f6873107e17ca4d1a5055aa7a2ad

on September 09, 2010
at 12:44 PM

Yeah, I used to get those are the airport a lot when I lived in Europe. I was a smoothie junkie for a time and I didn't get fat, but my teeth were worse off. From what I've read the rate of fructose absorption determines how much fructose is stored in the liver. Smoothies obviously absorb much faster than eating fruit.

If you like smoothies a better choice would be to make your own out of currants or other low-sugar berries.

21fd060d0796fdb8a4a990441e08eae7

(24543)

on September 09, 2010
at 02:28 PM

Could a smoothie actually absorb slower than eating fruit? Here's my line of thinking. The gut absorbs fructose faster with glucose in cotransport. If some of the smoothie fruits have a high fructose:glucose ratio, fructose may be left sitting in the gut if transporters can't handle the fructose load. Technically, this isn't a slower rate of absorption, but it is a longer overall time of absorption.

2
5c82a62baef2e2b49efae186a7d34fe5

on September 10, 2010
at 08:50 AM

Hello. My name Dan and I work at innocent. Have done for years. Just wanted to make it clear that the fructose you get in our smoothies is the same as you'd get from eating the equivalent amount of fruit. Nothing gets added and nothing gets taken away. And we never air freight ingredients. That would be dumb.

154bf5c84f7bd9f52b361b45d05dbc3a

(1215)

on September 10, 2010
at 10:14 AM

I've checked the website FAQ, it seems that the fruit is transported by land and sea. So even if it is chilled, refrigerated or has something else done to it, it's not any different from the whole fruit you find in the supermarket in that respect.

154bf5c84f7bd9f52b361b45d05dbc3a

(1215)

on September 10, 2010
at 10:10 AM

What do you mean by 'never air freight ingredients'? I think the website says that the fruit comes from various countries around the world.

1
62ed65f3596aa2f62fa1d58a0c09f8c3

(20807)

on September 10, 2010
at 03:42 AM

What is 'too much fructose' varies from person to person. An athlete might want more than a sedentary person with metabolic syndrome. Overall, I don't see a prob with occasional indulgence but I am suspicious of processed foods. The labeling laws often allow all kinds of preservatives as long as they aren't 'added' by the manufacturer of the final product. For instance, were there preservatives in the banana that was added by the original source if the banana puree? Banana quickly turns brown and kinda gross looking if it is not preserved with something. I don't think you can have a natural smoothie with banana sitting on the shelf for a long time and have it still have a nice color to it after many days. Also, stuff that is juiced, heated, processed, preserved, etc will often no longer have its pulp, nutrients, etc, intact. That is why I make my own smoothies and add coconut milk for more fat. I add my own homegrown fruits and drink it fresh. If you have a hankering for a smoothie, making your own is the best way. I've even noticed a huge difference in quality of taste even just from using fresh fruits instead of frozen. However, if the problem is you are hungry at the airport and options are minimal, the smoothie thing is probably a lot better than most other options. If you don't have a blood sugar/insulin control problem, once in a while is not going to be a big deal.

154bf5c84f7bd9f52b361b45d05dbc3a

(1215)

on September 10, 2010
at 10:09 AM

Hey Eva, The innocent website specifically says that they don't heat or otherwise prepare the fruit, it has a very short shelf-life because of this. But I guess fruit, even off the shelf has some kind of preservative or something done to it. Nothing grows 'natural' any more.

154bf5c84f7bd9f52b361b45d05dbc3a

(1215)

on September 10, 2010
at 10:17 AM

I guess its just a time / effort / money thing. Its cheaper to buy a ready made smoothie than to get the individual ingredients. And since I work for myself every minute is precious to me. I guess having it once in a while won't hurt me.

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