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Heart Health and Florida Orange Juice

Heart Healthy Benefits

Florida Orange Juice has many heart-healthy qualities:

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  • no sugar added
  • no fat or cholesterol
  • sodium free
  • contains vitamins & minerals that support heart health 

100% orange juice has been shown in clinical studies to:

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  • reduce total cholesterol1-5
  • reduce“bad” cholesterol (LDL)1-5
  • reduce blood pressure4,6,7
  • reduce or not affect triglyceride levels1-4
  • increase “good” cholesterol (HDL)1,8,9

Detailed Nutrition Information

Vitamins and minerals found in 100% orange juice may play a role in heart health:

Vitamin C has been shown to reduce monocyte adhesion to vascular tissue, improve nitric oxide production and vasodilation, and reduce vascular smooth muscle cell death,factors which support cardiovascular health.10 Orange juice is an excellent source of vitamin C providing 90-140% of the recommended Daily Value (DV) in an 8-ounce glass.*

Potassium is an electrolyte that helps maintain fluid balance which affects blood pressure. It is also needed for heart function and nerve transmission. Diets containing foods that are a good source of potassium and low in sodium may reduce the risk of high blood pressure and stroke.11 People suffering from kidney disease should consult their doctor on how much potassium is right for their diet. 100% orange juice provides 9-11% of the Daily Value of potassium in one 8-ounce serving.*

Folate and Vitamin B6 Regulate Homocysteine – While research has not shown definitive results, some studies show folate and vitamin B6 may help protect against heart disease by lowering homocysteine levels in the blood,12 an amino acid believed to cause damage to the arteries and increase the risk of blood clots when elevated. One 8-ounce glass of orange juice contains 12-20% Daily Value of folate and 6-11% Daily Value of vitamin B6.*

Citrus and 100% Orange Juice May Help Support a Healthy Heart

Epidemiological data suggest consuming fruits and vegetables, including citrus and citrus juices, may be beneficial to the cardiovascular system as they have been associated with reduced risks of cardiovascular disease and stroke.13-18 A recent meta-analysis found 100% citrus juice consumption related to a lower risk of cardiovascular disease and ischemic stroke.33

Many heart benefits may be partially attributable to plant compounds such as flavonoids. In several prospective cohort studies, higher intakes of the flavonoids found in citrus, hesperidin and/or naringenin, were associated with:

  • 52% reduction in cardiovascular events8
  • 41% reduction in all-cause mortality19
  • A decreased CV risk score, and lower changes in CV risk score over time in older men (45-64 years)19
  • 22% decreased risk of ischemic stroke in men20
  • 19% decreased risk of ischemic stroke in women21
  • 22% lower risk of coronary heart disease in post-menopausal women22

Blood Lipids

Based on NHANES 2003-2006 data, children and adolescents who were orange juice consumers had significantly lower serum LDL concentrations compared to non-consumers.23 Observational studies also report associations between adults who consume orange juice and significantly lower total and LDL cholesterol levels, with males having a 23 percent reduced risk for having low HDL concentrations, compared to non-consumers.24

Several clinical studies report significant decreases in total cholesterol and LDL cholesterol in adults who consumed orange juice.1-5 Significant increases in HDL have also been reported,1,8 including in participants who were hyperlipidemic.8 Notably, increases in HDL were observed in adults consuming 500mL of orange juice with a high-fat/carb meal compared to when the meal was consumed with water or a glucose drink.9 Most studies show no effect on triglycerides with orange juice consumption,1-3,34 although reduced triglycerides in inactive men have been reported.4

Blood Pressure

Adults consuming 500mL of commercial orange juice daily for four weeks had significant decreases in systolic (sBP) and diastolic blood pressure (dBP).6 As part of a hypocaloric diet, obese children (9 to 13 years old) consuming 250mL mandarin juice twice a day for four weeks had decreased sBP and dBP which was not observed in the control group on the same diet.25 Other clinical studies report reduced diastolic blood pressure (dBP) in inactive and overweight men who consumed orange juice.4,7 Furthermore, a meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials concluded that fruit juice intake had a borderline significant effect on reducing dBP.26

Endothelial Function and Inflammation

Research supports 100% orange juice and the plant compound hesperidin, found almost exclusively in citrus,27 on reduced inflammation, improved blood flow, and other benefits of cardiovascular health.

In a clinical trial of overweight older men (51 to 63 years old), the consumption of 500 mL of OJ or a hesperidin drink increased microvascular reactivity (skin blood flow) after six hours compared to the control. Interestingly, orange juice was more potent than hesperidin in acute measures of blood flow suggesting synergistic effects of the compound in orange juice.7

In a randomized controlled cross-over study in overweight adults, orange juice, high-flavanone orange juice, and homogenized whole orange attenuated the adverse effects of a high-fat meal on endothelial function (smaller reduction in blood flow) and sustained plasma nitrite levels (endogenous marker of nitric oxide production) compared to the control drink.28

Orange juice intake had beneficial impacts on various markers of oxidative stress and inflammation,29 and orange juice and hesperidin increased the expression of several genes associated with anti-inflammatory and antiatherogenic activities.30 Notably, consumption of orange juice helped attenuate the inflammatory response of a high-fat meal.31

Furthermore, orange juice and red orange juice consumption decreased pro-coagulant activity of whole blood, thus lowering the ability for blood to clot, in healthy young adults.32

*Values based on a 2000 calorie diet. FDA rounding rules applied when calculating percent DV based upon 2018 rules. Information is not intended for labeling food in packaged form. USDA SR28 database entries for 90206 and 09209 were used for calculating RDI.


References

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  34. Moreira et al. Food Res International. 2018;107:346-352,  https://doi.org/10.1016/j.foodres.2018.02.046