Pure fruit & vegetable juices protect against cancer &cardiovascular disease

Can pure fruit and vegetable juices protect against cancer and cardiovascular disease too? A review of the evidence

Carrie H. S. Ruxton A1, Elaine J. Gardner A2, Drew Walker A3

A1 Nutrition Communications, Front Lebanon, Cupar, UK A2 Cornwall Avenue, London, UK A3 Directorate of Public Health, Tayside NHS, Kings Cross Hospital, Dundee, UK


While it is widely accepted that fruit and vegetables (F&V) lower the risk of cancer, and cardiovascular disease (CVD), the role of pure fruit and vegetable (PFV) juices is often downplayed.

This review poses two questions: Are the protective benefits of F&V dependent upon constituents lacking in PFV juices (e.g. fibre)? Do PFV juices impact on disease risk when considered separately from F&V? Studies comparing the effects of fibre and antioxidants were reviewed, yielding the finding that the impact of F&V may relate more strongly to antioxidants, than to fibre.

For the second question, high-quality published studies that considered PFV juices were reviewed. The impact of PFV juices on cancer risk was weakly positive, although a lack of human data and contradictory findings hampered conclusions. For CVD, there was convincing evidence from epidemiological and clinical studies that PFV juices reduced risk via a number of probable mechanisms.

It was concluded that the view that PFV juices are nutritionally inferior to F&V, in relation to chronic disease risk reduction, is unjustified.

International Journal of Food Sciences and Nutrition

Volume 57, Number 3-4 / May–June 2006 249 - 272 DOI: 10.1080/09637480600858134

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