Prune Juice Benefits Older Adults
1. Aids digestion
The juice from dried plumbs,(prunes) offers many benefits according to Healthline. This is especially important for aging adults who are dealing with issues that were not a problem in their youth. Prunes are high in fiber, which can help prevent hemorrhoids that come about because of constipation. Chronic constipation unfortunately is a common problem in older adults. It can also be a painful issue for infants. Prune juice works as a laxative because of its high sorbitol content. The juice from prunes doesn’t contain the same amount of fiber as the whole fruit,but retains enough fiber, vitamins and minerals to provide healthy benefits.
2. Assists with hydration
Drinking a glass of prune juice can be counted along with water to keep you hydrated. An 8 ounce class has about 190 calories so be mindful not to drink too much. As we age it is important not to become dehydrated because this can be life threatening.
3. Lowers Cholesterol
Research indicates that dried prunes may help slow the development of atherosclerosis which is hardening of the arteries, which increases with age. One animal studyTrusted Source found that the antioxidants in prunes has a positive effect on cholesterol levels. Another studyTrusted Source revealed that soluble fiber, which is found in prunes, might help reduce cholesterol numbers. These same benefits are available in the juice as well.
4. Rich in potassium
Prunes are a good source of potassium, which is an electrolyte that assists in a variety of vital bodily functions. This mineral helps with digestion,blood pressure, nerve impulse, heart rhythm, nerve impulses, and muscle contractions. Potassium has the amazing ability to regulate blood pressure whether it is too high or too low. Potassium, is not made within the body so eating prunes or drinking prune juice will help you avoid deficiencies.
5. May reduce risk of colon cancer
Food scientists from Texas A&M University found that plums in their dried form as prunes have antioxidant levels they may help to decrease the risk for colon cancer. . Their trials revealed how consuming prunes promotes healthy gut bacteria in the colon. This is great news for older adults who may be having digestive issues or are at risk for colorectal cancer. This is yet another reason to drink prune juice.
6. Reduces appetite
Prunes are rich in fiber which help you to feel full longer. Prunes also have a low glycemic index, which means they raise the glucose levels in your blood slowly. This keeps your blood sugar from spiking which is good for diabetics. Prune Juice has more sugar than actual prunes but there is still some benefit from drinking it. A reduction in appetite will mean decreased calories which may help with weight loss.
7. Protects against emphysema
Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), which includes emphysema, is a chronic lung disease that causes difficulty when breathing. Smoking is the number one direct and indirect cause of this illness. A 2005 study showed a strong connection between lung health and a diet rich in antioxidants. A more recent study indicates that plant polyphenols, including antioxidants, can reduce the risk of COPD. Prunes contain high levels of antioxidants, which fight against the damage that is caused by smoking. Antioxidants work by neutralizing oxidation. This may reduce the probability of lung cancer, COPD and emphysema.
8. Lowers blood pressure
The potassium, and fiber in prune juice can help lower blood pressure. A 2010 study indicated that test subject given prunes on a daily basis had lower BP readings that those who did not eat prunes. High blood pressure is an issue with many aging adults and this is one way to help combat it.
9. A good source of iron
Prunes and prune juice are rich in iron which is important to prevent deficiency. Anemia is the result of a lack of iron and can cause dizziness, confusion, irritability, shortness of breath, and fatigue.
10. Builds bone and muscle
Dried prunes have been found to be an important source of boron. This mineral helps build strong bone and muscles. It may also assist in improving cognitive skills as well as muscle coordination.Prunes may also be beneficial in fighting the loss pf bone density from radiation. Healthline says that in 2016 an animal studyTrusted Source revealed that dried plums and dried plum powder (AKA prunes) reduced the effect radiation has on bone marrow, by promoting bone health and preventing loss of bone density. Drinking prune juice can offer the same. Prunes have also shown potential as a treatment for osteoporosis. Another study Trusted Source offers evidence that dried plums can prevent loss of bone mass in postmenopausal women who may be at risk for osteoporosis. Only 5 or 6 prunes a day were needed to experience this benefit.
11. High in vitamins
Prunes are not just high in potassium, they also contain many key vitamins which is important as we age.. A 1/2-cup portion of prunes contains vitamins A, B6 and K plus niacin, and riboflavin. Read the label on bottles of prune juice to find out the nutrients that are inside. Prunes also contain high amounts of minerals such as magnesium, manganese, and copper.
12. May reduce urges of an overactive bladder
An overactive bladder and frequent urination are issues that come with aging. An overactive bladder can be uncomfortable as well as embarrassing to deal with. By adding fiber to your diet this will help. An overactive bladder can be caused by a variety of issues and even constipation may sometimes increase the frequency of urination. Prune juice mat help with both issues.
This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.
© 2020 Cheryl E Preston