Digestive Disorders 101

At Sunsweet, we know that education often leads to more questions. So now that you're humming the ABC's of digestion, you must want to know more! We've included some of our most commonly asked questions below. Do you have a question that we haven't addressed? Ask the Sunsweet Nutrition Advisory Council (SNAC) to answer your digestive health questions.

PlumSmart Juice

Still looking for an answer? Ask Sunsweet, the digestive health experts. Simply use this form to type your question. Sunsweet will respond to the most common issues by posting in the FAQ section.

Frequently Asked Questions

Kid Friendly

Q: My grandson is four, and he has constipation problems. How much PlumSmart should I give him? I just recently started drinking PlumSmart and I think it's wonderful and love the taste! I can’t wait to share it with my grandson and the rest of my family and friends.

A: We’re glad to hear that you enjoy PlumSmart's crisp taste! PlumSmart is 100% juice and all natural with a unique combination of nutrients to help keep a “regular” balance within the digestive system – and kids love it! The recommended USDA serving of 100% juice for kids is 4oz, or 1/2 cup. For your grandson, you could start with 4oz, and then increase to 8oz as needed. If the problem continues, we recommend that you see a doctor to help evaluate what solutions are best for your grandson. Unfortunately, we cannot identify or diagnosis an individual’s medical condition.

Q: I have a three-year-old that has constant trouble with constipation. Is PlumSmart safe for kids?

A: PlumSmart is safe for kids, and it's great for kids! While some children tend to refuse fruit, it's easy to make sure they are getting the necessary fiber, vitamins and nutrients with the delicious taste of plum juice. PlumSmart is 100% juice, which means that it is rich in vitamins, minerals, and naturally occurring phyto-nutrients that contribute to good health.

Minerals and Nutrients

Q: Does plum juice help with losing weight too?

A: You've likely heard that fiber "keeps you regular." However, the health benefits of fiber go beyond its role in maintaining bowel regularity. Fiber-rich diets have been associated with a reduced risk of digestive disease, lower blood cholesterol levels, and may even aid in weight management. PlumSmart Plum Juice is a great tasting and easy way to increase your daily fiber intake. Sunsweet recently introduced PlumSmart Light. An 8oz serving has only 60 calories, but still provides 3 grams of dietary fiber and the same delicious taste as original PlumSmart.

Q: I know there are different types of fiber out there, but what is dietary fiber? Is there another type of fiber I should be including in my diet in addition to dietary fiber?

A: Fiber as a general term refers to non-digestible plant material. The fiber found in foods we eat is called dietary fiber and is important for good health. The "types" of fiber you hear about are two types of dietary fiber: soluble and insoluble. Both soluble and insoluble fibers are undigested, and they are therefore not absorbed into the bloodstream as they pass through the digestive tract. Overall good health requires the intake of foods high in both types of fiber, but it is ultimately more important to eat or drink enough fiber each day than to worry about the amounts of each type that are consumed. In addition to PlumSmart, fruits, vegetables, whole grain foods, beans and legumes are all good sources to help achieve the daily recommendation of 25 grams of dietary fiber. Dextrin is a soluble dietary fiber that is found in PlumSmart. The dextrin in PlumSmart is corn-based, so it's also gluten-free.

Q: I thought that sorbitol was "fake sugar," and had no idea that it's found naturally in plums. Why is sorbitol from plums beneficial in digestive health?

A: Sorbitol does occur naturally in plum juice and is also a common sugar substitute. It works by drawing water into the large intestine and can help to stimulate bowel movements. As a sugar substitute, it is derived from fruits as a nutritive sweetener, and it provides almost half of the average calories per gram of regular sugar and starch. Sorbitol is metabolized slowly from the body, which contributes to maintaining digestive regularity.

Q: I already drink PlumSmart and love it, however, I want to make sure I'm getting fiber through other ways in my diet. What other foods are good sources of fiber?

A: Dietary fiber is only found in plant foods, so fruits, vegetables, nuts and grains are good sources of fiber. Some types of food processing (such as milling wheat or rice to remove the bran layer) reduces the amount of fiber that a plant food contains. So look for foods which are labeled whole grain and of course, include plenty of fruits, vegetables and legumes in your diet.

Juice Myths

Q: I've heard that juice is too high in sugar and should be avoided. Is that true?

A: Fruit juices offer great taste and immense health benefits at the same time. While it is important to limit overall sugar intake and eat a balanced diet, the properties of 100% fruit juice like PlumSmart are essential to overall health. Beverages that contain 100% juice are considered nutritionally rich or nutrient-dense foods since they offer multiple nutrients in each serving. One eight-ounce serving of 100% juice, like PlumSmart, counts as a fruit serving. Health professionals recommend a balanced diet that includes whole fruit in addition to one or two glasses of 100% juice to meet the 5-9 daily fruit serving requirement.

Q: Is PlumSmart just a fancy name for prune juice?

A: No, PlumSmart is not prune juice. Prune juice is made by soaking dried plums (prunes) in hot water and then extracting the juice and solids. PlumSmart is made from fresh plums. The juice is extracted almost immediately after the fresh fruit is harvested. However, the plums are of the same variety as those which are dried to make prunes. PlumSmart delivers all the digestive benefits of prune juice, but is clear, tart-crisp, and refreshing. It tastes fantastic!

Q: I've been told that fruit juice can vary in the amount of fruit juice it actually contains - how can I make sure that I'm not getting cheated of my fruit serving?

A: All juices will specify the amount of juice it contains, so it is important to read the label. What you are looking for is 100% juice which means that the juice is the liquid obtained from a fruit or vegetable, and no added sugar. This ensures that you are getting fruit, not watered-down sugar water with fruit flavors.

The PlumSmart Solution

Q: How often should I drink PlumSmart juice?

A: We recommend one eight-ounce serving each day. A clinical study suggests that PlumSmart plum juice may help regulate digestion when 8oz were consumed daily for two weeks. That one, eight-ounce glass of PlumSmart every morning provides a full serving of fruit along with the essential nutrients that are good for your digestive tract. Eating foods rich in fiber and essential minerals should be a daily, healthy habit for good digestive health.

Q: Should I drink PlumSmart when I have a problem, or as a way to prevent a problem?

A: Both! PlumSmart may help to both relieve current digestive issues and may potentially aid in preventing them from occurring in the future. The body operates at peak performance when all parts are working properly, including the digestive tract - so whether you are seeking preventive or immediate relief, PlumSmart may be the solution for you!

Always consult a physician when experiencing chronic irregularity or other health concerns.

Information provided courtesy of Sunsweet Nutrition Advisory Council (SNAC)

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