Here's What Happens When You Drink Orange Juice Every Day

Orange juice is a morning staple in many households. Brands like Simply Orange and Tropicana sell various versions of the juice fortified with calcium and vitamin D, not to mention the benefit of the mega dose of vitamin C from the oranges themselves. According to New Vision, a single orange can provide your body with 116 percent of your daily recommended vitamin C requirement. Still, there are some who question if drinking OJ on a daily basis is healthy. 

Some of the naysayers shun the morning beverage claiming that store-bought orange juice is sweetened with sugar which can not only affect the delicate balance of sugar levels in your body but can have a negative impact on your joints, as well as lead to an increase of fat around your waistline. This, in turn, could lead to metabolic syndrome or type 2 diabetes. 

However, those on the other side of the orange juice drinking coin believe the daily consumption of orange juice boosts the immune system, helping your body fight off the common cold and other respiratory infections (via New Vision). Also, it's easy to buy orange juice with no sugar added — just look at the label first.

So who's right in the battle of daily orange juice drinkers vs. non-daily orange juice drinkers? The answer isn't so black and white.

Breaking down the pros and cons of drinking orange juice daily

There are many pros and cons to joining the daily OJ drinking bandwagon. The first, and perhaps one of the most beneficial, is all of the antioxidants you find in the juice. According to Healthline, orange juice is full of flavonoids and carotenoids which have anti-inflammatory properties that can help reduce swelling. 

On the flip side, orange juice can wreak havoc on your pearly whites. According to a study conducted by the University of Rochester Medical Center, the acidity of OJ wears away tooth enamel by 84 percent, softens teeth, and can make them rough in appearance, leading to possible decay which equals cavities (via Science Daily). That's a tough trade-off for sure. Eastman Institute's YanFang Ren, DDS, PhD, who led the study, suggests finishing your OJ quickly because if you drink slowly — think longer than 20 minutes — you are more likely to experience tooth erosion because your teeth are swimming in the orange juice longer.  

More daily orange juice pros and cons

Another pro is daily orange juice imbibing aids in preventing the growth of cancerous tumors. To this point, New Vision referenced a study on rats that discovered giving rats double strength orange juice postponed the rats from getting a chemically induced form of the disease and protected against getting colon cancer. Conversely, consuming OJ daily can lead to more frequent heartburn. In fact, Healthline references a study that found that 73 percent of participants experienced heartburn after drinking orange juice.

Still on the fence?

Another reason to consider skipping OJ in the morning stems from a study that found a link between large amounts of orange juice consumed and skin cancer. The study was published in the Journal of Clinical Oncology and found that of those who participated in the study, over one-third of those who drank OJ in high quantities were more susceptible to melanoma. While the study concedes more research is needed, it is worth considering before downing a glass (via Medical News Today).

But wait... there are still more benefits and perils for daily OJ consumers to consider

However, on the other side of the scale is the benefit OJ drinking might have in keeping your heart healthy and your cholesterol down. According to yet another study, long-term consumption of orange juice can lower the amount of bad cholesterol, known as LDL, in your system, while increasing the good, known as HDL (via Healthline)

Orange juice certainly has its benefits, but as the Greek poet Hesiod wrote, moderation is best in all things, including orange juice consumption. The bottom line: don't stop drinking this nutrient-packed beverage, just be mindful of how much and how frequently you are drinking it (and make sure you get the no-sugar-added variety). Because, after all, orange you glad when you're drinking orange juice? Okay, perhaps not the most orange-inal pun, but definitely healthy.