The Benefits of Fruit Juices During Pregnancy

Drinking fruit juices during pregnancy could have a number of positive effects, as long as they're included in moderation. Learn more.
The Benefits of Fruit Juices During Pregnancy
Saúl Sánchez Arias

Reviewed and approved by the nutritionist Saúl Sánchez Arias.

Last update: 10 March, 2023

There can be a number of benefits from drinking fruit juices during pregnancy. However, they should always be consumed in moderation and included in the context of a varied and balanced diet. We mustn’t forget that they’re preparations that have simple sugars inside. For this reason, it’s not a good idea to overdo it with their intake, in order to avoid the development of metabolic alterations.

Before starting, it’s key to comment that if gestational diabetes has developed, perhaps the most appropriate thing to do is to restrict to a great extent the presence of juices in the diet. Care should also be taken with other items that may contain simple sugars. However, if you start from a good initial body composition, you’re less likely to experience this disease.

The benefits of fruit juices during pregnancy

The consumption of fruit juices during pregnancy contributes to the prevention of contracting diseases that could put both the mother and the baby at risk. Learn about their main benefits.

They provide vitamin C

A pregnancy woman drinking orange juice.
Natural fruit juices provide a good amount of vitamin C, which is key to preventing the development of infectious diseases.

The main benefit of fruit juices during pregnancy is determined by their vitamin C content. We’re talking about an element that has been shown to be able to improve the immune response, both innate and adaptive. Therefore, the mother will be less likely to contract infectious diseases. What’s more, a more efficient symptomatological control of these will be achieved if they develop.

Ensure the presence of iron

Also, this vitamin is key to enhancing the intestinal absorption of iron, an essential mineral whose availability is often low. A study published in the Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences makes this clear. It’s important to ensure that iron levels are within adequate ranges. Otherwise, anemia may develop, especially during pregnancy, when blood volume increases progressively.

They’re a source of antioxidants

Moreover, most fruits are a source of antioxidants. These elements neutralize the formation of free radicals and their subsequent accumulation in the body’s tissues. Thanks to this, the risk of the mother or baby developing chronic and complex diseases that may affect their well-being in the future is reduced. In this regard, vegetables should be included in the daily diet.

What’s better? Fresh fruit or fruit juices during pregnancy?

In general terms, fresh fruit consumption is more recommended than juice consumption. This is just as true during pregnancy as in any stage of life. This is because fruit in its natural state has a higher percentage of fiber, which modulates the entry of glucose into the bloodstream. This prevents the possible development of metabolism-related problems that could lead to type 2 diabetes.

However, there are some trials in the recent literature that show contradictory results in this regard. While it’s clear that soft drinks are negative for the metabolism, moderate juice consumption may not have the same effect and may turn out to be positive. In any case, during pregnancy, it’s important to limit their presence in the diet and avoid the intake of more than one glass a day.

In the case that gestational diabetes has emerged, it would be advisable to prioritize vegetables over fruits. Their content in simple carbohydrates is lower and they can provide a greater amount of phytochemicals with antioxidant capacity. Thanks to these compounds, aging is modulated and the incidence of many complex diseases, such as certain types of cancer, is reduced.

Both in pregnancy and at any other stage, fresh fruit is recommended over juice, as it has a greater amount of fiber.
A pregnant woman standing by a table with fruit and a glass of orange juice on it.

Fruit juices may have benefits during pregnancy

As you’ve seen, moderate consumption of fruit juices during pregnancy could generate a number of benefits. But always remember to avoid deficits of essential nutrients that condition the proper functioning of the body’s physiology. It’s best not to consume more than one glass of these a day. What’s more, they should be homemade. Commercial juices aren’t usually a good alternative, nor are those containing artificial sweeteners.

Finally, bear in mind that it’s also possible to blend the fruit to make a puree. This way, the full effect of the fiber isn’t lost, although the entry of glucose into the bloodstream is faster than when consuming the piece whole. If drinking a smoothie is a way to include more fruits and vegetables in your diet, it shouldn’t be discarded. The intake of these foods is decisive in achieving a good state of health.

All cited sources were thoroughly reviewed by our team to ensure their quality, reliability, currency, and validity. The bibliography of this article was considered reliable and of academic or scientific accuracy.

  • Carr AC, Maggini S. Vitamin C and Immune Function. Nutrients. 2017;9(11):1211. Published 2017 Nov 3. doi:10.3390/nu9111211
  • Lynch SR, Cook JD. Interaction of vitamin C and iron. Ann N Y Acad Sci. 1980;355:32-44. doi:10.1111/j.1749-6632.1980.tb21325.x

This text is provided for informational purposes only and does not replace consultation with a professional. If in doubt, consult your specialist.