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The Hidden Cause of Middle Age Weight Gain

In All Health Watch, Weight Loss

As we get older, many of us find that the numbers on the scale keep going up year after year. You may figure that weight gain is just an inevitable part of aging. 

After all, metabolism slows down with age, right? So it makes sense that we will put on weight, even if we eat the same amount we did when we were younger.  

This long-held belief is false, according to a major new international study.  

Scientists at Duke University and more than a dozen other universities around the world analyzed energy expenditure in 6,421 people. The subjects ranged in age from 8 days to 95 years. They lived in 29 different countries.i 

The researchers discovered that metabolism does not slow down in middle age.  

It remains stable from about age 20 to 60. Only then, does metabolism start to gradually slow. 

“This suggests that if you are experiencing middle-age spread, it’s more likely to be because you are eating more rather than expending less energy,” said Dr. John Speakman. He is a professor at the University of Aberdeen and one of the co-authors of the study.ii 

The Real Reason You’re Getting Fatter as You Get Older 

Many of us swear we don’t eat any more than we did when we were younger, but we still put on weight.  

If your metabolism is not the culprit, what is? 

An earlier study may provide an answer… 

Researchers at Virginia Mason Medical Center in Seattle followed the eating and drinking of habits of more than 49,000 post-menopausal women for five years. And they tracked their weights.iii 

After controlling for exercise, total calories consumed, and other variables, the scientists found that one dietary factor led to weight gain more than all others… 

Drinking fruit juice. 

Subjects who had a single 6-ounce daily serving of 100% fruit juice were more likely to put on weight as they got older. But participants who ate whole fruit instead of drinking juice were more likely to lose weight. 

“100% Fruit Juice Is Not Your Friend” 

Dr. Brandon Auerbach is a primary care doctor at Virginia Mason Medical Center in Seattle. He led the study. “For adults trying to lose weight, 100% fruit juice is not your friend,” he said. 

Why is fruit juice so fattening compared to eating fruit? It comes down to one word… 


“In terms of weight gain, there’s a striking difference between fruit juice and whole fruit,” Dr. Auerbach. “Fruit juice does have the same vitamins and minerals as whole fruit does. But it has hardly any fiber. The sugar in fruit juice gets absorbed very quickly, and we think that’s why it acts differently in the body.” 

The study was published in the journal Preventive Medicine. It points out that “one 6-ounce serving of 100% fruit juice contains 15-30 grams of sugar.” That’s about 4-8 teaspoons.iv 

You’d probably never spoon 4 teaspoons of sugar into your mouth at breakfast. But that’s essentially what you’re doing when you drink a glass of orange juice.v 

3 Healthy Fruit Juice Alternatives 

We’ve warned you before about the sugar content of juice drinks. Many people think they are doing their health a favor by switching from soda to juice. 

But a British study found that many juice drinks have even more sugar than soda. The researchers tested 203 fruit drinks. More than half had as much sugar in a 7-ounce serving as a 12-ounce can of soda. 

Here are healthier alternatives to fruit juices: 

  1. Eat fruit, not the juice. That way you get the benefits of fiber. Fiber has been shown to fight weight gain.
  2. Drink vegetable juice. Vegetable juices are rich in vitamins and antioxidants but are lower in sugar.
  3. Drink lemon water. Simply squeeze lemon juice into a glass of water. It’s refreshing and has zero calories or sugar. A German study found that drinking lemon water first thing in the morning increases metabolic rates. This leads to greater calorie vii 

It’s time to stop blaming a slow metabolism for your weight gain. You may find that a thinner body is possible if you stop drinking fruit juice.    

Editor’s Note: Have you gained weight during the pandemic? You’re not alone. Americans packed on an average of two pounds a month during the coronavirus crisis, according to a recent study.  

Read our monthly journal Independent Healing to discover how to lose pandemic weight without going hungry. Go HERE to find out more.

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