Drinking healthy vitamin drinks is a good way to get your daily requirement of vitamins and minerals. The best source of vitamins and other necessary nutrients is through a balanced diet, but for those times when you are too busy to eat a healthy diet, vitamin drinks are a good second option. Be wary of high-sugar and high-calorie vitamin drinks that may have more calories than vitamins. Choose a vitamin drink made from fresh whole ingredients that includes all the natural vitamins, minerals and antioxidants.
Vegetable juice made from whole vegetables is one way to add more vegetables to your diet. Vegetable juice is loaded with plenty of vitamins and minerals, but has less fiber than eating the vegetables in your regular diet, according to Mayo Clinic nutritionist Katherine Zeratsky, R.D., L.D. A typical 8-oz. serving has 1 g protein, 0 fat, 11 carbohydrates, 19 mg calcium, 0.73 mg Iron, 469 mg potassium, 71.9 mg vitamin C, 2000 IU vitamin A and only 49 calories. Low-sodium vegetable juices and fortified vegetable juices with added calcium and antioxidants are also available.
Fruit juices are healthy vitamin drinks, but are also high in natural fruit sugars. Fruit juice is a healthy vitamin drink, but be sure to drink 100 percent fruit juice and stay away from fruit-juice cocktail or other sweetened fruit juice. All it takes to equal one piece of fruit is four ounces of 100-percent fruit juice. If you are dieting, remember to limit the amount of fruit juice you drink, as it is a calorie-containing drink. Orange juice is a good source of vitamin C, which improves immune-cell functioning and may prevent some types of cancer. (Reference 3) It also contains vitamins A, E, K, B-6, folate, thiamin, riboflavin, niacin, pantothenic acid, choline, beta carotene, alpha carotene, lutin, copper, zinc, manganese, potassium, phosphorus, magnesium, iron and calcium. Cranberry, pineapple, apple and pomegranate juices are also loaded with vitamins and minerals that are necessary for a healthy body.
One-percent reduced fat milk is typically not the first thing that comes to mind when you think about a healthy vitamin drink, but it does contain important vitamins and nutrients that help build strong bones and protect against osteoporosis. Milk is a rich source of calcium and vitamin D, but also contains phosphorus, riboflavin, vitamin B-12, potassium, vitamin A and niacin.
Combining fresh fruits with tea and other ingredients boosts the total vitamin, antioxidant and mineral content of a health drink. Blended smoothies are one example that includes fruit juice such as orange juice, yogurt, protein powder and perhaps a splash of carbonated water to add some zing. Tea contains powerful antioxidants and vitamin K, folate, riboflavin, copper, manganese, magnesium, phosphorus and ample amounts of potassium. Fruit juice and tea are often combined into a healthy vitamin drink that also provides a quick pick-me-up.
- Mayo Clinic: Vegetable Juice: As Good as the REat Thing?; Katherine Zeratsky, R.D., L.D.; 6-3-10
- USDA: Nutrient Data Laboratory
- Fitness Magazine: The 8 Healthiest Drinks; Tamar Schreibman; 8/14/10
- Mayo Clinic: Fruit Juice: Is it Good or Bad for Kids?; Katherine Zeratsky, R.D., L.D.; 6-17-09
- BBC News: Tea 'Healthier' Drink than Water; 8-24-06