BestBrands Juice List: We Name Names
No matter how you squeeze it, choosing a healthy juice is a tough proposition. For starters, there are several juice sections throughout most grocery stores. You’ll find juices with the frozen foods, the packaged foods, and the refrigerated foods.
And, to complicate things further, there are oceans of brands and assorted varieties to pick from. Every product seems to have a different name and a different claim. And by claims, we mean those sneaky trick labels that lead you to believe you’re doing your body a favor by drinking this juice.
Let’s take a quick look at a few common label claims that may have tricked you into buying a less than healthy juice.
“A Full Day’s Supply of Vitamin C”
Usually code for a lot less juice and a bunch of junk ingredients.
“Light” or “Reduced Sugar”
Code for watered down (especially when water is the first ingredient), less juice, and added artificial sweeteners.
“Drink,” “Punch,” “Cocktail,” “Beverage,” and “Ade”
All code words for added sugar (high fructose corn syrup), minimal juice, added preservatives, and artificial coloring & flavoring.
Note: Added chemicals include things like modified cornstarch, sodium citrate, cellulose gum, sodium hexametaphosphate, sodium benzoate, potassium sorbate, and artificial colors.
There’s so much clutter to cut through that it’s no wonder many shoppers grab the first juice they see. Who cares if it’s healthy? All you need is an orange juice that’ll mask the taste of the vodka in your screwdrivers, right?!
We’re kidding, of course. We know most of you want to drink a truly healthy juice. So we’re here to help you do just that with our short and sweet BrandAid Juice Guidelines.
BrandAid Juice Guidelines
- Look for the words “100% Juice” on the front label.
- Look for the words “100% Juice” on the Nutrition Facts label. U.S. law requires manufacturers to list the total percent juice content on the information panel of juices and diluted juice beverages.
- Look for a short ingredients list (less is usually more) that contains only the type of juice you’re buying. Sometimes manufacturers sneak cheap filler juices into their products to save money!
- Avoid these common junk ingredients: high fructose corn syrup, corn syrup, sucralose, acesulfame potassium, artificial flavors and colors, sodium citrate, modified cornstarch, cellulose gum, sodium hexametaphosphate, sodium benzoate…or any other word(s) that you can’t pronounce!
These varieties and brands have met the Brand Doctor’s standards for ingredients and taste. Plus, they pack a nutritional punch without all the harmful junk ingredients found in many brand-name products claiming to be the real deal.
Note: Remember, all varieties of the same brand are NOT created equal! Please make sure you are choosing the recommended variety within each brand. When in doubt, read the ingredients label!
Florida’s Natural Premium 100% Pure Orange Juice
Florida’s Natural Premium 100% Grapefruit Juice – Ruby Red
Minute Maid Premium – Original 100% Pure Squeezed Orange Juice
Simply Orange 100% Pure Squeezed Orange Juice
Tropicana Pure Premium 100% Pure and Natural Orange Juice
Tropicana Pure Premium Ruby Red Grapefruit Juice
Note: All of the varieties listed above offer options with and without pulp, and/or with added calcium – these varieties are good healthy choices too.
Martinelli’s 100% Pure Apple Juice
Mott’s Natural Fresh Pressed 100% Apple Juice
Ocean Spray 100% Pure Cranberry (usually in healthy foods section)
Sunsweet Gold Label 100% Prune Juice
Welch’s 100% Grape Juice
White House Premium (Pressed) 100% Apple Juice
Cascadian Farm Organic Juice Concentrates (orange, grape, or apple juice)
Tropicana Season’s Best Frozen Orange Juice Concentrate
Welch’s Purple 100% Grape Juice – Frozen Concentrate
Do you have a favorite juice that might be a contender for our BestBrands list? Please e-mail your fave’s to the Brand Doctors and we’ll check them out!
Remember, when you’re armed with a little eBrandAid know-how, you’re in control at the grocery store.
In Our Opinion: The information contained in the eBrandAid e-newsletters is strictly based on the opinions of the eBrand Doctors. We have created a set of guidelines that we believe will help shoppers to better understand and decode food labels on products found in most grocery stores. Our mission is to help shoppers find the healthier brands that have the least amount of chemicals and other junk ingredients.