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Children should get at least one cup and adults at least two cups of fruits every day, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture. The nutrients can come in the form of juice, smoothies or whole fruits. But which option is best?
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You can drink or chew through the nutrients in fruit. If you choose juice, avoid added sugars and consider how it's processed.
"If the majority of the pulp and the skin are extracted, and it's simply juice, we're missing out on the fiber and potentially other really great nutrients," says Kate Zeratsky, a Mayo Clinic dietitian.
A smoothie made from skins-and-all can get you fiber. And it's a convenient way to get several fruits.
"Just keep in mind: Are you satisfied, or would you be more satisfied if you were just eating the whole fruit?" asks Zeratsky. "There is thought to be a link between chewing and, say, the enjoyment of a meal."
Zeratsky says eating whole fruits is more satisfying because it gets you all the nutrients and bulky fiber that keeps you full longer. The bottom line?
"You can have fruits in many forms," says Zeratsky. "But just make sure, most of the time, it's the whole fruit."
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