Q. Is V8 good for your health? -Thomas
Q. You discuss the lack of nutritional content and excess of sugar in fruit juice in several of your articles (which I whole heartedly agree with). Can you address the nutritional value of vegetable juice? I drink a large glass of V8 low sodium every day. I would hate to think that is doing more harm than good. -Thomas
Depends on your perspective. How gray is gray and how high is high? Everyone lives under a different set of rules that guides their behavior and what is acceptable to some is too much for others. And so it goes round and round with health in general.
How healthy do you want to be? How do we measure it? Am I being vague enough? Your questions pose an interesting dilemma. Your habit of drinking V8 juice, a commercially prepared product made by Campbell soup company, should be applauded as you have chosen to drink vegetable juice over sweetened fruit juice or even soda pop. So I commend your habit and say “job well done.”
Then there is part two of this question, the question I ask myself 100 times a day, “Would I do this for MYSELF?” My standards might be different than yours but I don’t want to undo something that you are doing that is clearly offering you some benefit. It’s better that you drink V8 than to abandon this habit because it’s not a perfect solution.
I personally would not choose to drink V8 juice as it is a processed food. They take the vegetables and heat them which will obviously destroy some of the natural vitamins and phytonutrients contained. I don’t know how long this stuff is sitting in a vat somewhere so freshness becomes a concern as it is the enemy of good nutrition. They then add MSG “natural flavorings” to it which I will not consume in any form at any time. It’s often placed in an aluminum can which leaches aluminum into the juice as the juice is an acid based tomato product which works to free up the aluminum from the can and put it in your body. It can also come in a steel can, in which case I know it has a plastic liner in the can which is a source of BPA (estrogen) that’s unacceptable for me.
I commend the Campbell company for offering an organic version but most of the V8 being produced is not organic so that would be a deal breaker for me.
How about making my own V8? Very easy and I do it everyday. Most mornings I have a protein shake and I put 2 or 3 different vegetables in the blender every day along with a small amount of fruit. The vegetables are organic, fresh, and unprocessed. No MSG or other “elements.” No heavy metals like aluminum. No estrogen. And these vegetables have not been sitting in a vat so they have all of their natural phytonutrients to power my cells and keep them healthy.
I like what you’re doing for yourself, Thomas. You are thinking your way through your nutritional day and seeking healthy options. It’s a journey and no one can eat a perfect diet because perfection does not exist.
Make smart choices, enjoy your food and laugh every day. These are the keys to good health.
Thanks for the great question,
Dr. Gary Huber
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