Q: How big a glass of juice is considered a serving of fruits or vegetables?
A: As long as it is 100 percent juice, one-half cup (four ounces) of fruit or vegetable juice is considered equal to one-half cup of fruit or vegetables. Juice can supply many of the vitamins, minerals and phytochemicals found in whole fruits and vegetables. However, juice does not supply the fiber found in solid fruit, and the calories in fruit juice can add up quickly without producing lasting hunger satisfaction. For people who are unable to eat solid fruit due to some illness, several servings of juice daily can provide important nutrients. However, for the rest of us, most recommendations suggest that we drink no more than 3/4 to 1 cup of fruit juice a day. The American Academy of Pediatrics encourages children to choose whole fruit, too, and recommends limiting fruit juice to four to six ounces a day for children one to six years old. Choose carefully: a “juice cocktail” or “juice beverage” means it is not 100% juice. Right above the Nutrition Facts panel, you can find the exact percentage of juice in a juice-containing beverage. When checking nutrient content on the label, adjust for the package serving size listed, because it usually refers to an eight-ounce, not six-ounce, serving.