A closer look at the majority of new, so-called, ‘healthful’, soft drinks reveals that most have surprisingly high sugar content. For example, a recent study by Imperial College London found that there was virtually no difference between Fanta and Purdey’s Original 1.
Marketed as healthier alternatives to the now more expensive fizzy drinks- is this new breed of soft drinks just as bad for our health as the old carbonated ones?
When we are at work or on the go, fizzy drinks have become an easy option if we don’t want water. However, with the price increases resulting from the new sugar tax, many of us may find ourselves selecting one of the new fruity alternatives, billed as being full of healthful benefits.
Although, on closer inspection, the sugar content in these new healthier alternatives, may leave us deciding to make more of an effort to try some of the new and convenient ways to access fresh fruit during the working day. Companies like Fruitful Office2 who deliver office fruit baskets, are looking for new ways to help us to eliminate the temptation to make that fateful stroll to the vending machine or corner shop.
After attempting to out-smart the impending sugar-tax with smaller packaging and adapted contents of their fizzy offers, soft drink manufacturers appear to be trying to smarten up their act with new offerings that are said to be healthful, as opposed to healthy – confused?
Healthful is defined as ‘something that will create good health’ and contributes to ‘wellness’. Still none-the-wiser? Essentially, the term refers to making choices that are helpful for your body and well-being as oppose to maintaining a restricted intake of certain types of food. In essence, this is re-branding.
From Flyte’s clean drinks, Fever Tree’s Light range and Strathmore’s Botanics, the shelves are quickly filling up with healthful soft drinks made from natural sugars, eye-catchingly labelled as being full of natural fruit juices and sugars.
We run the risk of getting suckered by food marketing that gives us plush packaging, premium pricing and fancy fonts. However, this time soft drink manufacturers have really pushed the boat out and piggy-backed onto many of the successful gin trends from last year, with botanicals, fermentation and craft soft drinks winging their way to our local stores.
Will we be waylaid by fancy packaging and trendy ingredients? I absolutely think we will.
However, one would urge great caution in thinking that these are indeed, helpful to our bodies.
They may well be filled with natural sugars from fruit, but what they don’t tell you, is that once fruits enter the world of manufacturing, where they are crushed, pulsed and blended, those natural sugars become the same bad sugars that we find in unhealthy food, in addition, much of the nutritious goodness is also lost.
So we may be better, to take a deep breath, select the water – which is still priced affordably – and pair it with an actual piece of fruit.
Do you agree? Have you tried the new crop of healthful drinks or found an easy way to get your fruit on the go? Tell us- we would love to know!