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NewsBites January 2011 Issue

Juice Bridges Veggie Gap

With Americansí vegetable con- sumption dropping over the past decade, drinking your vegetables could help reach dietary goals. Thatís the conclusion of a randomized trial funded in part, not surprisingly, by the makers of V8 vegetable juice. Scientists at the University of California-Davis assigned 90 volunteers to follow the Dietary Approaches to Stop Hyperten- sion (DASH) diet regimen while also consuming 0, 8 or 16 fuid ounces of vegetable juice daily. Despite being told to follow the DASH plan and receiving nutrition education, participants fell short of the goal of four daily servings of vegetables if not counting the juice. Across all groups, non-juice vegetable intake averaged 2.6 servings daily after 6 weeks and 2.3 servings after 12 weeks. But the groups also getting juice were able to close the gap. Researchers also looked at heart-health measures, which generally didnít change; pre- hypertensive participants, however, showed a signifcant decrease in blood pressure with higher vegetable and veg- etable juice intake. While eating whole vegetables remains preferable, research- ers concluded that juice is ďan effective and acceptable way for healthy adults to close the dietary vegetable gap.Ē Nutrition Journal, September 2010; abstract at <http://www.nutritionj.com/content/9/1/38>

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