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Is V8 Juice Really Healthy?

Many people grab a V8 juice as a way to add more vegetables to their diet. What are the health benefits of V8 juice? Is it really healthy?

If you’ve ever slapped yourself on the forehead because “you could have had a V8”, you may have wondered what you may have missed. V8 juice is often advertised as a quick way to get a few servings of vegetables without having to eat a bowl of broccoli or spinach. What are the health benefits of V8 juice? Is it a good choice?

What Veggies Does It Contain?

V8 juice now comes in a variety of forms V8 Splash and V8 Fusion drinks, but still the one that stands out in most people’s minds is the classic V8 vegetable drink. This drink contains the juice from a variety of vegetables – carrots, celery, watercress, parsley, spinach, lettuce, and beets. These vegetable juices make up only about thirteen percent of the drink with the remainder being tomato juice. It’s obvious that the majority of the juice found in a glass of classic V8 is tomato juice.

Tomato juice is a healthy vegetable juice due to its high content of lycopenes, a carotenoid and antioxidant that may reduce the risk of certain types of cancer, particularly prostate cancer. Tomatoes are also an excellent source of vitamins A, C, K, and the mineral potassium, which helps to control blood pressure. Despite this, it’s likely the health benefits of V8 juice would be greater if there were high quantities of the other vegetables, other than tomatoes. In some ways, V8 juice is little more than souped up tomato juice.

The Good

V8 juice is fat-free and relatively low in calories at seventy calories per 11.5 ounce can. It supplies almost twice the daily recommended intake of vitamin C and more than half of the vitamin A. It’s also an excellent source of potassium. It’s likely there are a lot of phytonutrients not listed on the label such as flavonoids and carotenoids, all of which appear to play a role in promoting health. V8 is also a quick and convenient way to get a serving of vegetables.

The Bad

V8 juice is not a good choice for anyone who has heart disease or hypertension. A single 11.5 ounce can has 690 mg. of sodium, almost a third of the daily recommended sodium intake for the average individual. Fortunately, V8 now makes a low sodium juice drink which is a better option, although some people find it to be lacking in taste. The other problem is that the vegetable juices in V8 juice are “reconstituted”, a process where water is removed and then added back in. It’s unclear whether any of the phytonutrients or natural enzymes are lost in this process. V8 also contains “natural flavors” which some people claim includes MSG.

The Bottom Line

V8 juice is a better drink choice than colas and other sugar sweetened beverages, but with its high salt content it’s not as healthy as fresh vegetable juice from a juicer. If you don’t have hypertension or heart disease, V8 isn’t a bad choice if consumed in moderation, particularly if you’re on the run and don’t have time to get five to seven servings of fruits and vegetables. Just don’t count on it to be a substitute for a healthy, veggie rich diet.

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  1. I totally agree, it is better than colas or sugar water beverage, but long term V8’s are great once in awhile.
    Great article.

  2. I am diabetic 11. Should I drink a small glass every day?

  3. thank you for all the good and bad of V8. I read the label and decided to steer clear of it because of the sodium. Thank you for the confirmation. I will stick to the veggies themselves. Good to see you here too!

  4. V8 has a low sodium version.Supposedly 70% less sodium.
    It’s harder to find though.

  5. Good article.
    Well researched.
    My point on the subject is
    My son loves V8 alot.
    He likes the veggies in it.
    He wants to take his vitamins.
    My 10 year old does not like tomatoes and broccoli, but
    she loves the juice.
    If the child does not like eating the vegetables let the child have a vegetable juice.
    My children’s doctor says that is okay as long as they get their vegetables one way or another.
    When I make something and I put peas on the side.
    Both my son and daughter will take the peas and mix it up with whatever is on the plate at the time.

  6. I am wondering something.
    Would you like to be friends?

  7. very sweet of u, thanks a lot….

  8. I totally agree with your view point that V8 juice is a better option than the popular soft drinks like colas. It can be consumed by anyone as it is fat free and relatively low in calories

  9. I’m a biker. Bicycle, not motor bike. V8 is great during or after a long ride. And the sodium is not a problem.

  10. I’ve been using V-8 since the 70’s. It’s great to add a little zing to pasta dishes.

  11. it am a great drink for when you thirsty AND hungry!

  12. I am highly allergic to MSG- the article is correct. There is hidden MSG (flavorings) in V-8, even the low sodium kind. Mr. Biker, JV– you are wrong- the sodium is a problem- haven\’t you read the news lately about sodium consumption?

  13. i really dot think the sodium is that big of a problem for people that exercise.. i eat fried foods.. all the time .. mayonnaise.. dressings on salads.. butter on bread every time.. i also exercise a lot.. sometimes i take 5 to 10 mile walks n runs.. weight lifting.. exercise is key people

  14. I live on v8 juices along with sustagens and homemade pumpkin soup after having a lap-band operation I have no real choice when it comes to eating as I also have life-threatening allergies to food additives,these take anywhere juice packs allow me to “eat” safely whilst out and remain healthy!

  15. I drink a v8 3 times a week after my morning sprints!!

  16. I drink V8 all the time. I love it. It’s a great snack for the office, it’s easy, and it’s not sugary like the candy everywhere here!
    My blood pressure is at the very low end of normal (I work out 5 days a week), and my constant V8 habit has not changed that. In fact, I’ve loved salty food all my life, and I’ve always had low BP. Genetics do come into play, people! ;-)

  17. I am a huge fan of V*, and the low sodium version actually tastes better to me…..everyone’s different! Anyhow, I like to drink one small can a day…keeps me regular….lol….and I like it best w anything w sodium nitrate especially since reading somewhere that tomato products reduce the most harmful effects of such food…bacon, processed luncheon meats, etc. V8 really gives my vegetable beef soup that extra zing that makes it different than anyone else’s out my way. It’s a staple…love it.

  18. A great drink if you exercise regularly, sweat a lot, are trying to clean up your diet. Excellent after a long run, tennis match,etc. Younger and very active (very!!) don’t worry about sodium. You need it. Older folks, get the low sodium cans. COSTCO carries them.

  19. I contacted the company and they would not tell me what the natural flavoring was as it was proprietary information. Come on….it’s not a main ingredient and all other ingredients are listed which happen to be vegetables.All they would tell me is that it is not one of the top 8 allergens, of which MSG is one. They would not tell me if was yeast or soy related so I think I will nix drinking this product since they are not willing to give full disclosure to consumers who may need to know for allergy purposes. Not like I asked them for the ratio of ingredients or anything.

  20. OMG I am having a V-8 right now and agree with (almost) all the comments above! I am at work and yes, its the perfect snack for the hungry and thirsty. Now, to try the beer theory ;)

  21. I think regular V8 is great. The Fusions are too sweet. Im in college and I began taking a V8 to school everyday because I didn’t like the high fatty foods served in the cafeteria that are almost all fried in the fryer or on a grill. V8 helps me get through the day because it’s filling and nutritious. I usually have it with a banana and some low fat yogurt, maybe some healthy cottage cheese. I would like to try the low sodium cans though. I also noticed that nobody mentioned it’s Gluten Free which is very important to some people. I drink about 3-4 cans per week.

  22. Well I wanted to search online about V8 because I recently had all my wisdom teeth removed…yea ouch. I bought some V8 and I will keep drinking to help get me some nutrition n vitamins in my body why I recover

  23. We have no problems buying V8 low sodium in the Knoxville, Tenn area. At 200mg of sodium per 11.5 oz serving it fits into my diet well.

  24. ALL ingredients should be listed in detail. Duplicating the taste of V-8 wouldn’t be that hard and I am opposed to the ‘trade secrets’ excuses. If harmful or allergens are listed as “natural ingredients” the consumer has no way of knowing except by trial and error. Why shouldn’t we know what is put in our food?

  25. J, I disagree with your “no trade secrets” stance. That’s like going into a McDonalds and demanding to know exactly what is in their ‘Special Sauce’… they just will not tell you! And I believe they have the right to withhold that information.

    Try asking any BBQ restaurant exactly what is in their bbq sauce. They just will not tell you!

  26. In my experience, most of the secret ingedient hype is just that, hype to diffrentiate their product. V8 does seem too eliminate some of the fiber content by their production that would otherwise be there. If you have a juicer and a little time try Tom, carrots, spinach, baked or grilled eggplant, make about gallon, season to taste (cilantro, salt pepper etc) keeps about a week… Also makes a great warm/cold soup and bloody Mary mix!

  27. every ingredient should be listed . anyone who really knows about a truly healthy diet knows that every ingredient counts.
    they should list every ingredient no matter what . thier is such things as patons to protect thier recipes . not knowing what your eating is the reason almost everyone is fat .

  28. i drink v8 vegetable juice everyday should i stop can a professional please reply

  29. I think i may be addicted.. I’ve read about people drinking a glass a day or 3-4 cans a week.. but i can go thru a 64oz bottle in a day, maybe 2. I have to make myself not drink it all at one time or in one day. It taste sooo good. Anybody know what damage, if any, i am doing???

  30. I found it at sams club. Harps or Walmart where I\’m from have it as welll.

  31. I found it at sams club. Harps or Wal-mart where I’m from have it as welll.

  32. Just starting to drink V8 and so far not too bad. It doesn’t taste as bad as I remember it tasting. Haha. I just wanted to research whether V8 juice was all hype about how good it was for you, and from what I can read it’s not hype! =) The sodium and the “secret ingredients” seem to be the only issues! I would just like to mention that if there was a major allergen in V8 they would have to disclose that to the public. It would say something along the lines of *could contain soy products* on the label somewhere.

  33. I drink a can every day. Best taste when it’s at room temperature. If you drink long term, you will notice a change in how you feel. More energy, better attitude, and better health. If you have a sodium problem, drink one every 2-3 days. The low sodium version tastes horrible.

  34. Oh yes, drink a can of V8 for lunch as well as eating a pack of that new StarKist sandwich ready tuna salad (No Bread). For some reason they go great together. Watch the pounds come off!

  35. is it okay to have the 2 serving can everyday? always need it to get through precalculus.

  36. I spiked up my V8 with Tabasco and a few drop’s of hickery liquid into the bottle, cover it and shake it all up and it really tasted very good! It’s like a liquid Bar-BQ drink.

  37. My way:

    Low sodium V-8 spiked with concentrated organic lemon juice. Great zing and more nutrition. Try it!

  38. A semi high Na diet isn\’t always bad for you if you are active and you have a healthy heart. Drink 6 a day and don\’t be surprised when your BP goes up. If you are older and have regular physicals/ md visits then simply keep tabs on your bp and or sodium levels in your blood. Na is an essential mineral/electrilyte that you need for proper electrical signals to transmit through out your body. How hard would it be to cut back on sodium else where so that you can get a healthy veggie drink, and yes raw veggies are better, but I wouldn\’t go as far to call V8 bad. Too much of anything can be bad for you

  39. I have been drinking V8 everyday and I have noticed a huge difference in my mornings in the office. I am more focused and I just feel better. The sodium for me is not a problem because the doctor told me I need to increase the sodium in my diet. This however, my because I do not eat red meat which has alot of sodium. Over all V8 works well for me.

  40. I started using V8 juice to make frozen ice-pops for my kids. They like them and don’t even realize that they are made from fruit and vegetable juices. I figured this is a much healthier option then buying ice pops which are loaded with sugar and artificial flavorings.

  41. I just left the cardiologist’s office and the dietician took me off V8, not because of the sodium but because of the high carbs. My blood pressure and weight are perfect. But, I have high cholesterol and high triglycerides and all juices are high in carbs which means your body turns them to sugar immediately. They might be high in vitamins and other nutrients, but the bad from the carbs far outweighs the good if you fall in the same place I am with high triglycerides. I thought I was doing ok by drinking the high fiber V8 but the doc said no, too much sugar. Bottom line, it’s not just the sodium you need to watch out for. Same problem if you drink fruit juices and you have high triglycerides.

  42. I just left the cardiologist’s office and the dietician took me off V8, not because of the sodium but because of the high carbs. My blood pressure and weight are perfect. But, I have high cholesterol and high triglycerides and all juices are high in carbs which means your body turns them to sugar immediately. They might be high in vitamins and other nutrients, but the bad from the carbs far outweighs the good if you fall in the same place I am with high triglycerides. I thought I was doing ok by drinking the high fiber V8 but the doc said no, too much sugar. Bottom line, it’s not just the sodium you need to watch out for. Same problem if you drink fruit juices and you have high triglycerides.

  43. If you do the V8 Splash it has only 50mg of Sodium. The Sugar is at 16g but that’s way less than most sodas. It is gluten free and tastes great, plus you get your fruit serving in there too.

  44. oh, thank u’ve been very informing. i liked this comment somebody used to drink it 3 times a week after sprinting, whould be good intake then, but some are advising me to take supplements along with whatever i’m eating. but sure i have to check with my DOC first!. wish u all healthy life, everyone.

  45. I use low sodium V8 as a soup base, and then add in a dash of extra virgin olive oil, turmeric, basil, oregano, minced garlic, rosemary, and more, for a tasty herb broth to go along with my normal meals.

    I have a bowl pretty much every day, and it is easy to heat up, and customizable with a variety of different foods, if you want to make it a bit heartier.

  46. It’s also quite gross. I tried it once and never looked back. I’m having a can now because I’m hungry post workout and on WW and its only two points a can.

  47. You could’ve probably bought yourself a juicer with all the money you spent on sucking down V8. I would do that if I were you. You just might happen upon a formulation you like far better than V8.

  48. I eat a good breakfast and a good lunch but for dinner I alternate a glass of V-8 and a glass of skim milk. I allow myself one pig out dinner a week but that day I eat a light breakfast and no lunch.

  49. V8 is healthy and perfect for bloody marys.

  50. Don’t be so sure about “the bad” of V8. Maybe instead of reading webshit you should try science:
    http://www.nutritionj.com/content/9/1/38.
    Just what I like to call “a thought”.

  51. Lagref, your information is good. Thanks. Your attitude, bad.

    Tomato

  52. I have been drinking one 11.5 oz can of V-8 daily, for about ten years now. I choose the low sodium verson. Tastes like crap, but it works in several areas: 1) you get more than enough Vitamin C, which you will notice keeps your gums healthy. 2) there is enough vitamin A to keep your eyes and skin in great shape 3) there is enough fiber to keep your colon in good condition, and, keep you full enough to avoid eating snacks until it’s lunch time. 4) The improvement to your health will be noticeable, IF you drink one per day, every day, for many years.
    Now, in addition, you must also eat loads of nuts (either roasted peanuts or almonds), daily! This means more than one ounce of either type of nut, per day, every day, for years. Your health, skin, and energy level will seriously benefit. But you must make the commitment to eat nuts daily, and, drink your V8 daily. Then, you must also eat a decent diet of lean meats, frozen or properly grown veggies, and stay away from sweets and junk food as if they are poison (because they are). one cookie here and there is ok, but junk food should never be a habit. Wine is ok, but it must be the deep red wines only, such as Merlot or Cabernet S.

  53. I’ve started juicing recently and make my own V8 juice MSG FREE!!! No Sodium. Anyway, I’ve started breaking out in very fine petechiae that itches two or so hours after drinking my homemade juices. I’m drinking them 1-2 times a day. What in the drinks may be causing this reaction?

  54. PLEASE ADVISE;

    I DRINK APPROX. 36 OZS. OF V-8 JUICE EVERY MORNIING.

    IS THIS A PROBLEM?

    THANK YOU; LAWRENCE KLINE

  55. I would like to say that you people are ridiculous debating whether or not vegetable juice is good or bad for you. News flash: Vegetables are always good, and that steak and fries is never good. If you are concerned about sodium intake, I don’t think vegetable juice is to blame, it is your terrible diet of calorie dense and nutrient poor foods. If v8 juice is the only form of vegetables consistently found in your diet and you are contemplating taking it out because of salt content, you really need to reflect upon your health.

  56. I agree with Tyler. In comparison to the other Junk (Soda, Sugary Drinks, etc.) V8 is a healthier alternative. Especially, if it is the only form of vegetables you get during the day.

  57. I agree with Tyler. In comparison to the other Junk (Soda, Sugary Drinks, etc.) V8 is a healthier alternative. Especially, if it is the only form of vegetables you get during the day.

  58. @LT – JV is actually right; in HIS situation. People who bike in tours or cross state and so on, actually need to consume more sodium than normal people, because they sweat it out. but thats only in situations like that. for the normal person, that is a hell of a lot of sodium in 1 glass. making us bloated and looking even fatter :)

  59. I drink a glass everyday–only the low sodium kind. I love it. Trying to give up candy and cookies so I figure this is better than those.

  60. The V8 Low sodium seems pretty healthy from the label. I drink it often. I drink a big 2 serving glass after working out and running. It is really the only time I drink it. It tastes delicious after exercising…but not so much as just a drink. All of these posts about V8 being “better than soft drinks” are stating the obvious. I can’t imagine to many people drinking V8 for pure pleasure. I like a nice cold sugar only coke…but I don’t drink it for any health benefit. I drink it as a treat. I drink V8 as a vitamin and energy source for replenishing my body after a tough workout. Stick with the low sodium…it tastes good and is quite healthy. This article should have spent more time discussing that excellent product.

  61. Drinking the Low Sodium for years, it is SO good, yes, THAT good. When I sit to lunch at work, that’s the first thing I do, I drink and that’s where it taste the best. You may not like at it first but beleive me, after so long you would never want to drink the Original.

    Sometimes you drink after a meal and that will make it taste a bit less good so that’s why I mostly drink a huge glass before eating.

  62. Salt does not contribute to hypertension. Need to update this article to keep up with science.

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