Fruit juice consumption linked to higher blood pressure

By Nathan Gray contact

- Last updated on GMT

“The current investigation showed that the daily versus rare or occasional consumption of fruit juice was associated with higher central BP, central pressure augmentation and PPA,” revealed the researchers.
“The current investigation showed that the daily versus rare or occasional consumption of fruit juice was associated with higher central BP, central pressure augmentation and PPA,” revealed the researchers.

Related tags: Blood pressure

Habitual consumption of fruit juice may be a predictor for high blood pressure, according to new research.

While the benefits of consuming fruit are widely extolled, many also warn that consumption of sugar-filled fruit juices could be bad news.

Writing in the journal Appetite​, a team of Australian researchers examined the association between fruit juice consumption and blood pressure – finding that frequent fruit juice consumption was associated with higher aortic blood pressures.

“Despite a common perception that fruit juice is healthy, fruit juice contains high amounts of naturally occurring sugar without the fibre content of the whole fruit,” ​said the team – led by Matthew Pase from Swinburne University of Technology. “Frequent fruit juice consumption may therefore contribute to excessive sugar consumption typical of the Western society.”

Indeed, Pase and his team noted that although excess sugar intake is associated with high blood pressure (BP), any association between habitual fruit juice consumption and BP has until now remained unexplored.

“The current investigation showed that the daily versus rare or occasional consumption of fruit juice was associated with higher central BP, central pressure augmentation and PPA,”​ revealed the researchers.

Study details

Pase and his team investigated the association of fruit juice consumption with brachial and central (aortic) blood pressure in 160 community dwelling adults.

Habitual fruit juice consumption was measured using a 12 month dietary recall questionnaire. Frequency of fruit juice consumption was classified as rare, occasional or daily. On the same day, brachial BP was measured and central (aortic) BP was estimated.

The team found that those who consumed fruit juice daily, versus rarely or occasionally, had significantly higher central systolic blood pressure, central pulse pressure, central augmentation pressure and central augmentation index as well as lower pulse pressure amplification. However, there were no differences in brachial BP, said the researchers. 

“The present findings suggest that the daily use of fruit juice may increase central BPs, which are known to be associated with cardiovascular disease risk, silent cerebrovascular injury and cognitive impairment,”​ said the team. 

“These findings are important because there is a common perception that fruit juice is healthy.”

Pase and his colleagues conceded that the two main limitations to the study, are the small sample size and the observational nature of the study design, “which precludes us from drawing a causal link between increased fruit juice consumption and the development of high BP.”

“Given that high central BPs are associated with an increased risk of CVD and target organ damage, larger epidemiological studies and ultimately randomized controlled trials are needed to confirm the present findings,”​ they said.

Source: Appetite
Volume 84, 1 January 2015, Pages 68–72, doi: 10.1016/j.appet.2014.09.019
“Habitual intake of fruit juice predicts central blood pressure”
Authors: Matthew P. Pase, Natalie Grima, Robyn Cockerell, Andrew Pipingas

Related topics: Research

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3 comments

Fruit to Fruit and seasonal variation

Posted by Dr Venugopal N,

Fruit juice consumption linked to high blood pressure seems to be an incomplete study. Under the favourable climatic conditions the aspiring plants put all of their strengths into the reproductive organs and form fruits to produce their offspring. Man has learnt to collect and enjoy those fruits. These favourable conditions in the name of agro-climate differ from plant to plant and the respective physiological activities ultimately in the form of Phyto-chemicals viz., Poly phenols, Flavonoids, Tannins, Sterols, Steroids, Saponins, and Alkaloids etc. vary accordingly fruit to fruit. Habitual consumption of fruit juices differ in their deliveries with the respective phyto-chemicals present fruit wise. Therefore, presenting study on fruit juice under one arm is not justified.

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Large variation in juices

Posted by Dr Peter Dingle,

It is first of all interesting to note the sponsors of the study was Swiss Wellness who have a vested interest in sowing juices are not as good as supplements.My major issue is however the classification of fruit juices is likely to contain fruit juice drinks which are mostly not fruit juice and have added sugar and whole fruit juices with pulp and all the other nutritional ingredients. Numerous studies have shown the benefits of eating fruit to lower the blood pressure and cardio vascular risk.

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This claim is incorrect

Posted by Gopi Paliyath,

It is incorrect in the sense that fruit juice by itself from different sources may exhibit different properties. If the juice is from a source rich in anthocyanins, chances are that it will have BP lowering effect. On the contrary, if the juice is extracted from a polyphenol-poor source, with sugar added, then this result is not surprising. It is like effects of any sugar drinks. What the researchers should have done is to to compare smoothies and juices from a range of fruits, high or low in polyphenols, and evaluate the effects. This should be a proper dietary intervention study, than comparing answers from the population in general.

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