Friday, November 6, 2015

Wellness goodness from Mott's Apple Juice

In an attempt to keep making healthy choices, I consciously try to stay away from artificial beverages. This means ordering fresh fruit juices most of the time instead of powdered drinks or carbonated beverages.

And yet, when it came to fresh fruit juices, I always had this image of fresh fruits being blended right there and then. I never really thought of real fruit as coming from a bottle. But then, I got invited to the Mott's Apple Juice event and my good friend, Janice Villanueva, founder of Mommy Mundo, happened to be its brand ambassador. Of course, I know and trust Janice's good judgment and know that all she wants for her family is the best by making her own healthy choices.

My mommy blogger friends with Janice Villanueva (in yellow)

Even before the event began, I already took a closer look at Mott's labels (yup, I'm a label reader!!!). Here's what I found.

Someone once said, a product is natural if your grandmother understands the ingredients. Look at those ingredients: water, apple juice concentrate, ascorbic acid (or Vitamin C). Nothing else. And check the front label. It says "100% apple juice". None of those numbers and scientific sounding names that mean food coloring, additives or artificial stuff!

Another thing I noticed was the amount of sodium - only 10mg. It wasn't even 1% of the Daily Value! Check other juices and sports drinks and you will realize they are loaded on sodium. Sports drinks especially are made that way because their purpose is to replace the salt your body has lost. But if one is not careful taking sports drinks, you may take in excess sodium and end up with other problems. At least now, I know that I need not worry about high sodium content with Mott's Apple Juice.

"An apple a day keeps the doctor away"

Growing up, I always thought that was just a cliche. Nowadays, apple is a staple fruit at home. And for good reason. It has a lot of health benefits as some of these articles show:

1. Protects the heart from heart disease with its antioxidant flavonoids and phytonutrients
2. Helps prevent asthma attacks because of the high content of antioxidants. (Ref: New York Fruit Quarterly, Volume 11, Number 4, 2003-2004)
3. Helps prevent cancer because aside from antioxidants, it also has antimutagenic characteristics, anti-inflammatory mechanisms and immunity features (Ref: Planta Medica Journal, 2008 Oct; 74 (13) 1608-24
4. Improves memory by preventing the decline of an essential neurotransmitter (acetylcholine) and helps fight Alzheimer's Disease

When Janice shared how she spent so much time in the supermarket because she took a lot of time reading labels, I could really relate, haha. We Moms really do that. We read labels, compare brands, and even use a calculator to find out which has more value for our money. Janice buys Mott's Apple Juice and her whole family loves it.

One thing still lingered in my head though -- apple juice concentrate. I wasn't sure what it really meant and whether it involved the actual fruit, diluted juice, or some artificially concocted liquid made to taste like apple.

With us at the event was a Philippine- and USA-registered dietitian-nutritionist, Cheshire Que, who has 13 years of professional experience and is a regular resource person when it comes to diet and nutrition. Cheshire clarified that "100% apple juice concentrate" meant that everything in it came from apples. She taught us how to differentiate "100% apple juice concentrate" label from other labels such as "reconstituted" (water was added),  "pasteurized" (it went through a heating process to kill bacteria), or even plain "concentrate" (if percentage not indicated, it is not a guarantee that it is 100% fruit).

Cheshire Que
Here's one more thing, especially for diabetics. Those with diabetes need to be conscious about the Glycemic Index (GI) of food and drinks they consume. GI is the measure of a food's effect on blood sugar levels. The higher the GI, the worse it is for diabetics because it means the food has a more immediate and higher impact on blood sugar levels. Cheshire Que said any food with a GI over 70 is considered high. Look below and compare Mott's Apple Juice's GI vs the other kinds of drinks.

Mott's Apple Juice only has a Glycemic Index of 44 compared to other types of drinks

I also asked Cheshire if it was okay to take Mott's Apple Juice first thing in the morning on an empty stomach. She said yes.

I'm now more comfortable letting my family drink Mott's Apple Juice. O% fat, sugar-free, gluten-free, added Vitamin C, no additives. And yummy.

Mott's 100% Original Apple Juice comes in two variants: 32oz and 64oz. It is available in leading supermarkets and groceries nationwide.

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