Washington, Oct 25 : A new study by researchers at the University of California-Davis has suggested that making vegetable juice a daily habit could be a small step that can lead to big changes in meeting daily vegetable recommendations.
For the study, the researchers looked at three groups of healthy men and women. All three groups received dietary counselling on ways to get more vegetables, but only two of the groups were instructed to consume at least one serving of vegetable juice, in the form of V8 100 percent vegetable juice each day.
Of those two groups, one drank one 8-ounce glass of vegetable juice every day and the other drank two 8-ounce glasses of vegetable juice every day as part of a balanced eating plan.
The researchers found that those who received dietary counselling and consumed vegetable juice were far more likely to meet the daily vegetable recommendations, about two and a half cups (five servings), than those who received counselling alone.
Specifically, more than half of the participants who drank one serving of V8 100 percent vegetable juice met the recommendations, as did all of those who drank two 8-ounce glasses of V8 100 percent vegetable juice each day.
Of those who did not drink any vegetable juice, less than a quarter got enough vegetables.
The researchers said that changing dietary behaviour is much more effective when dietary advice is complemented with tangible, real, easy and convenient solutions.
"What we found in this study is that drinking vegetable juice seemed to address some of the key barriers to vegetable consumption such as convenience, portability and taste, so individuals were more likely to meet their daily recommendations," said Carl Keen, PhD, study author and distinguished Professor of Nutrition and Internal Medicine at University of California, Davis.
"Furthermore, vegetable juice drinkers reported that they actually enjoyed drinking their vegetables, which is critical to adopting dietary practices for the long-term," Keen added.
In fact, after six weeks of the study, vegetable drinkers reported they felt "more satisfied" with the ease of getting vegetables into their diet, and that V8 100 percent vegetable juice provided an important additional source of vitamins and minerals.
The study has been presented at the American Dietetic Association annual conference.