Prune Juice Benefits
Most people think prune juice as little less than a natural laxative but the benefits of prune juice goes well beyond just prevention of constipation and facilitation of soft, painless, and regular bowel movement.
Find out from this article why you should drink prune juice for its numerous health and nutritive reasons other than helping you pass stools easily.
5 Prune Juice Benefits
Here are the top 5 prune juice benefits for juicing prunes:
BENEFIT #1 - Digestion Aid
Natural sorbital and dietry fiber found in prunes can help combat constipation, as a result, prune juice acts as a laxative and help your body digest food.
BENEFIT #2 - Helps Your Bladder
Sometimes when your body is feeling constipated, this can have a negative impact on your bladder, and may in fact increase the urge to go more frequently. By drinking prune juice, the fiber will help in this regard to help your bladder urges.
BENEFIT #3 - May Prevent Diseases
Prunes contain a choc full of vitamins, minerals and antioxidants. In particular, prunes are an excelled source of phenols, which are a type of antioxidant. These antioxidants can help protect your cells from damage and as a result prevent chronic diseases such as heart disease, and cancer.
BENEFIT #4 - Great For Muscles
Based on a number of studies, prunes are the source of an important mineral called Boron. Boron is renowned for helping in the building process of strong bones and muscles.
BENEFIT #5 - Can Aid Weight Loss
Believe it or not but studies have shown that eating or drinking prune juice can suppress your hunger for longer than eating low fat snack such as biscuits.
It’s important to take note that drinking excessive amounts of prune juice can also have a counteractive effect on weight loss. But one cup a day should certainly aid in suppressing your hunger.
Prune Juice – Scientific Mumbo Jumbo
In an article published in the April 2011 issue of Alimentary Pharmacology and Therapy, one half of 40 chronically-constipated subjects in a study conducted by the University of Iowa’s Carver College of Medicine were given prune juice and the other half given psyllium to find out which is the better natural laxative. Prune juice had better results because of its high content of insoluble fiber.
This fiber’s remarkable ability to soak up a lot of water to make stools easier to pass not only prevents painful and difficult bowel movement, it also decreases the transit time for eliminating waste material from the body. The insoluble fiber in prune juice also provides “good” bacteria for your large intestine; when these good bacteria use the insoluble fiber, they produce butyric acid.
This acid, of the short-chain fatty acid type, is used by your large intestine as the primary energy source for intestinal cells. It is a potential anti-inflammatory agent and is being studied as a treatment for ulcerative colitis and Crohn’s disease. Regular consumption of prune juice produces more butyric acid to improve intestinal permeability. Drinking prune juice regularly maintains the integrity of your gut’s barrier.
Drinking one or two glasses of prune juice daily is a way to regulate digestion and to help you meet the Recommended Daily Allowance (RDA) for several vitamins including C, K, and B. Vitamin C is a potent antioxidant that helps in the formation of strong connective tissues and strengthens your immune system’s function. Vitamin K, on the other hand, ensures that your blood’s clotting ability is not hampered.
The B vitamins in this juice help in the healthy maintenance of red blood cells and in the regulation of the functions of the immune and nervous systems. The vitamin B2 or riboflavin in prune juice has the following benefits:
- Fights free radicals
- Prevents you from pre-maturely ageing.
- Helps produce red blood cells that carry oxygen throughout your body.
Prune juice contains vitamin B3 also known as niacin that can:
- Boost the levels of high-density lipoprotein or HDL “good” cholesterol.
- Help treat mild to moderate cases of acne.
The vitamin B6, or pyridoxine, content in prune juice helps in the regulation of homocysteine, an amino acid that has been linked to heart disease. Moreover, pyridoxine plays a significant role in the production of melatonin and serotonin that regulates sleep patterns and moods, respectively. Pyridoxine also helps produce the stress hormone norepinephrine and reduce inflammation due to rheumatoid arthritis.
You also get iron from consuming prune juice which is an integral part of hemoglobin, the molecule found in red blood cells. Hemoglobin transports oxygen from the lungs to various cells and prevents anemia. Additionally, potassium is found in prune juice. Potassium balances body fluids and maintains regular heartbeat, nerve impulses, and muscle contractions.
Prune Juice Nutrition
A cup of prune juice has 182 calories, 0.8 grams fat, 44.67 grams carbohydrates, 707 milligrams potassium, 10 milligrams sodium, 18% vitamin C, 17% iron, 3% calcium, 1.56 grams of protein, and zero fat. The natural sugar content in prune juice is pegged at 42.11 grams which may worry some people. This amount, however, does not cause blood sugar levels to rise rapidly because prune juice also contains sorbitol.
To ensure that you obtain the benefits of sorbitol, juicing prunes is the better option to buying commercially-prepared prune juice which usually has the addition of sugar in its formulation. Although similar to glucose, sorbitol is absorbed more slowly into the bloodstream, unlike glucose. This slow absorption enables the gut to retain a considerable amount of water to increase the stool’s moisture content.
This, in turn, enables a softer, bulkier kind of tool to pass more easily and prevent the tiny blood vessels in the lower rectum and anus to become strained and rupture; it thus prevents hemorrhoids. Investing in a good juicer assures you that the sorbitol content in your prunes is retained in the juice even after extraction and there is no addition of unnecessary sugar. Juicing your own prunes is also less expensive.
Prune Juice Side Effects
While prune juice can help eliminate constipation, there are several side effects that it may cause and which you should be aware of. Prunes are a source of oxalates that slow calcium absorption in the body. An excessive amount of prune juice will cause an increase in oxalates which can be solidified by your body fluids and become problematic for your gallbladder or kidneys.
Excessive prune juice consumption could also result in gas, bloating, and stomach cramps as well as diarrhea. Remember to juice only the amount you will need on a daily basis. If you don’t want to juice as often but want to drink prune juice more than once a day and obtain the maximum benefits, get a masticating juicer. It extracts the juice more slowly to avoid heat build up that can destroy the nutrients of prunes.
Learn How To Make Prune Juice
Click here to see how easy it is to make home made prune juice.