A few weeks ago I was asked to review the new Healthy Balance juices. A line of reduced-sugar juice cocktails. Sweetened with Splenda. They contain 75% less sugar, calories, and carbohydrates than traditional juice cocktails.
Normally when I see the word "cocktail" on a juice bottle I immediately run away screaming. Well, that may be a bit of an exaggeration but to me, "Cocktail" is the industry’s code word for sugar water mixed with about 10% juice.
Even the word "juice" bothers me only because so many people equate it with something healthy. I’m not saying it can’t be healthy but drinking it by the gallons isn’t doing anything but spiking your blood sugar and giving you 1600% of your vitamin C for the day.
In my opinion it should not be ours (or our kids) go to drink. That should be water. Right? I mean what else are we suppose to be drinking. No other creature on the planet drinks anything but water or milk on a day to day basis. Will a dog lap up a bowl full of apple juice? sure. It’s sweet. It tastes good. But he’ll survive just fine, if not better, on his daily intake of water.
OK, I’m going to slowly back down off my soapbox now before I get out of hand. I don’t think juice in and of itself is "bad." I just think–like so many other things–we consume way too much of it.
I really like juice. I do! But I don’t trust myself around it. I can easily gulp down hundreds of extra calories. Like eating, I don’t have a beverage shut off switch. I drink and drink and drink. So I rarely buy or keep it in the house but I do allow the Little Guy to order it when we go out to eat. This way it’s seen as a "treat" or a "sometimes food." Once he finishes it I tell the waitress to bring him water. There is no such thing as a bottomless glass of juice when I’m around.
I do like to enjoy some juice now and then too. So I’m happy when brands like Healthy Balance comes along. It was a tasty juice and at only about 30 calories a glass it’s a light option for me. Although, I’d rather give 100% juice with no sugar/sweetener added to the Little Guy instead of a Splenda sweetened one. He’s not watching his calories so whey not give him the real stuff?
So this brings me to the question of the week. What do you drink? Or should I ask… What are your drink habits? because I believe that’s all they really are.
In my house we are milk (cow & almond-more on that later) and water drinkers mostly. The husband has a nasty soda habit but I rarely touch the stuff. My goto is water. It will always be, everything else is just a now and then treat.