Fruit juice and body weight in adults


Fruit juice and body weight in adults

1 min read

Drinks which contain free sugars are believed to contribute to excess calories and can lead to weight gain, but evidence suggests that fruit juice has a different relationship with body weight.

Systematic reviews and meta-analyses of randomised controlled trials (RCTs) – which are gold standards of research – have examined the impact of fruit juice on obesity risk and body composition in adults. D’Elia et al. (2020) found no statistical associations between regular fruit juice consumption and body mass index or weight gain using data from observational studies and RCTs [1].

A similar conclusion was reported by a more recent meta-analysis which included measures of body weight, body mass index, waist circumference, fat mass or lean body mass from RCTs [2].

A further systematic review and meta-analysis of RCTs looking at orange juice and hesperidin supplementation found that neither had a significant effect on anthropometric (body size/weight) measures in the assessed studies [3].

Out of 17 human intervention trials where 100% orange juice was consumed at intakes of 250–750 mL daily for 4 to 12 weeks, none reported a statistically significant change to body weight [4].

However, the volume consumed matters and it's best to stick to regular modest intakes, such as a daily glass of 150-250 ml. In one study, where people were given 1.3 L of fruit juice or a carbonated soft drink daily for two weeks, there was a 1kg increase in fat mass when the drinks were consumed as a snack [5]. However, fat mass reduced by 0.3 kg when the same amount of fruit juice was consumed with meals [5].

In contrast, a more modest daily intake of 150-300 mL fruit juice, as part of a 12-week intervention to boost fruit and vegetable consumption to 8 servings per day, did not lead to a statistically significant change in body weight [6].

In conclusion, the current evidence does not indicate that 100% fruit juice, when consumed in moderate quantities in line with guidelines, has any significant effect on body weight in adults.


1 D'Elia L et al. (2021)

2 Alhabeeb H et al. (2022)

3 Djafari F et al. (2021)

4 Ruxton C et al. (2020) doi:10.1017/S0029665120001755

5 Hägele FA et al. (2018)

6 Duthie SJ et al. (2018)