V8 is a popular vegetable and fruit juice brand famous for its classic tomato juice but it also has many other favorite products including an energy drink and fruit and vegetable juice blends. However, are V8 juice products safe to drink during your pregnancy?
Overall, V8 products are safe when pregnant and can be a great way to increase your consumption of additional healthy fruits and vegetables; however, consider drinking the low sodium option. Additionally, limit V8 + Energy as it is high in caffeine and sugar.
With so many variations from their original tomato juice line to the energy drinks and fruit and vegetable juice blends, let’s dive into the safety and nutrition of the products V8 offers.
Are V8 Juices and Products Good for Pregnancy?
If you struggle to limit your sugar-sweetened beverage consumption (sugary sodas or shakes), V8 is a great swap that provides fruits and vegetables. Many V8 products are rich in essential vitamins and minerals, including iron, calcium, potassium, and vitamin A.
However, there are some considerations to take into account with V8 juice during pregnancy as vegetable and fruit juices can be high in sugar and salt.
Consuming excess sugar during pregnancy can contribute to many pregnancy-related conditions, including gestational diabetes mellitus, preeclampsia, high blood pressure, and more (source: Nutrients).
While sugar naturally occurs in fruits and many vegetables, this sugar is not inherently bad for you as fruits and vegetables contain fiber that helps process and absorb the sugar slowly, in a way that does not spike blood sugar (source: Mayo Clinic).
In juices like V8 that do not include the pulp from the fruits and vegetables, there is little to no fiber. Therefore, the sugar content can cause blood sugar spikes, similar to soda. However, V8 has vitamins and minerals, which provide additional benefits.
Finally, ensure safe handling of your V8 juices by checking the expiration date that is stamped on the product. Also, promptly store any excess product in an opened package in the fridge rather than leave it at room temperature. Discard your juice if it appears a different color or is spoiled.
Read on to learn more about the specific product lines within the V8 brand, including the V8 + Energy!
Is V8 Energy Safe During Pregnancy?
V8 Energy is OK in moderation when you’re pregnant. In addition to the usual vegetable and fruit juices, V8 Energy includes green and black tea that contains 80 milligrams of caffeine per 11.5-ounce can.
It is recommended that pregnant women consume no more than 200 milligrams of caffeine per day (source: American Pregnancy Association). Eating and drinking excessive amounts of caffeine during pregnancy can increase your heart rate and blood pressure since it is a stimulant and can even cross the placenta to the baby.
Additionally, caffeine is a diuretic, meaning it causes increased urination, which can lead to dehydration (source: American Pregnancy Association).
Consume V8 + Energy with caution during pregnancy as the 80 milligrams of caffeine it contains per can needs to be considered within the 200 milligrams allotted per day.
Additionally, each can contains 10 grams of sugar and zero grams of fiber.
For more information on energy drinks when pregnant, read this article here.
Is V8 Vegetable Juice Good for Pregnant Women?
Rich in vitamins and minerals, this juice is a great way to consume additional healthy fruits and vegetables.
You can drink V8 when you’re pregnant, however, V8’s vegetable juices are very high in sodium. For example, an eight fluid ounce serving of V8 Original 100% Vegetable Juice contains a whopping 640 milligrams of sodium.
It is recommended to consume no more than 2,300 milligrams of sodium each day, however, a more ideal range is to have no more than 1,500 milligrams (source: American Heart Association). Consuming too much sodium can contribute to high blood pressure (source: Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics).
With 400 milligrams less than the original version, the V8 Low Sodium Vegetable Juice is a better option, with only 140 milligrams of sodium per cup.
Are you a spicy food fan? You might like that the V8 Spicy Hot Vegetable Juice contains a zesty kick that you may be craving during your pregnancy. Spicy food is completely safe to consume during pregnancy, yet you might experience uncomfortable bloating, an upset stomach, or other gastrointestinal symptoms.
However, the V8 Spicy Hot juice contains 640 milligrams of sodium per 1-cup serving, just like the original. So try adding a bit of your favorite hot sauce to the V8 Low Sodium Vegetable Juice to add that delicious kick you are looking for with a much lower amount of sodium.
Is V8 Juice Pasteurized?
The Food and Drug Administration recommends that pregnant women only consume juice that has been pasteurized. Pasteurization is the process of heating to high temperatures to kill any potential bacteria or pathogens that may cause disease.
While not explicitly mentioned on their website, V8 makes commercially processed products and is therefore pasteurized and safe to consume during pregnancy.
Are V8 Blends Safe for Pregnancy?
V8 also offers fruit and vegetable blends that include flavors such as Healthy Greens, Strawberry Banana, Pomegranate Blueberry, and more. The V8 blends are safe for pregnancy, but, again, there are things to consider.
The main difference between vegetable and fruit juice and whole fruits and vegetables is the fiber content. All V8 products contain zero grams of fiber.
The Healthy Greens option, for example, may seem like a desirable way to ingest your vegetables, including sweet potatoes, spinach, and kale; it contains 13 grams of sugar and 180 milligrams of sodium.
Overall, whole fruits and vegetables are superior to pulp-free juices. However, they are good substitutes for sugary sodas, lemonades, and fruit punches.
I hope this article helps you decipher which V8 products are safe during pregnancy and which to avoid.