Starbucks is clearly the king of the world of Joe, so it’s about time they dabbled in the latest trend, right? Juices and juicing have taken on a life of their own in foodie culture recently, boasting all the health benefits you could imagine, so it’s no surprise that Starbucks jumped on board. Their new line of juices just premiered in New York City and are made by a company called Evolution Fresh Juices. They say they’ll have you squeezing life for everything its got, but sip carefully or you’ll be squeezing into your jeans instead!
First of all, let’s get something straight. Juice does not = automatically healthy. While yes, juices and juicing can be healthy, they can also be sugar traps disguised as health food. And get this, some juices contain as much sugar as a slice of cake (yikes!) while other juices contain a healthy blend of veggies that pack a low cal and nutritious punch. The key here is to be able to differentiate between the two and since Starbucks’ juices fall in both categories, your first line of defense is to read those labels!
What to look for on the labels (in order of importance): 1. Number of servings per container 2. Calories per serving 3. Sugar per serving
Making juice requires A LOT of fruits and veggies. For example, their tangerine juice, is made from only tangerines, in fact it takes 8 tangerines to make just one serving. Now, here is the catch, each serving contains 30 g of sugar (read: over 7 teaspoons of sugar). Would you ever sit down to eat 8 tangerines? I doubt it! Wait there is more! Each bottle of this bright colored juice contains two servings which means each bottle of their tangerine juice has a whopping 60g of sugar! That’s 14.5 teaspoons of sugar. WHAT?! You read that right! And don’t be fooled into thinking the “organic” juices are any better. Same day, same stats, same sugar rush. All of the fruit juices are in the same danger zone, so I’d advise you steer clear and pick up a piece of fruit instead.
On a more positive note, some of their veggie juices are not half bad. My favorites include the Vital Greens and Essential Greens juice, because as you may or may not know, I LOVE greens. They’re much lower in calories (25 calories/ 8oz serving) and sugar (2 g per serving). If you’re not quite ready to go THAT green, I also recommend the Sweet Greens juice which has 40 calories and 3 g of sugar per 8oz serving. So next time you’re in Starbucks, if you’re not quite in the mood for a plain ole’ cup of Joe, skip the Venti Frap with whip and go for one of the greens juices instead.