Is OLIPOP Healthy? (And What Does “Healthy” Even Mean?)
Before we can answer the question, ‘Is OLIPOP healthy?’, we have to first define what the term ‘healthy’ actually means. We all have different ideas of what healthy looks like depending on our cultural background, religious beliefs, personal preferences, or dietary needs.
But no matter what your version of a healthy dinner plate looks like, the end goal of “healthy” looks the same for most people. Most of us eat healthy because we want to:1
- Encourage health and well-being
- Achieve and maintain an appropriate weight
- And reduce our risk of diet-related chronic disease
The “why” of healthy makes sense. It’s the “how” that gets complicated because healthy eating is not always easy or obvious. So what exactly is healthy eating? What does it look like and how does OLIPOP fit in?
What Does Healthy Eating Mean?
Given we all define it differently, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), responsible for creating regulatory accepted definitions, set out to define “healthy” back in 2016.2 Here's where they landed.
According to the FDA, Foods that are deemed “healthy”:
- Have a fat profile makeup of predominantly mono and polyunsaturated fats
- Contain at least ten percent of the Daily Value (DV) per reference amount customarily consumed (RACC) of vitamin A, vitamin C, vitamin D, calcium, potassium, iron, protein, or fiber (nutrients of public health concern)
The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) adds to this definition by defining a healthy dietary pattern as “nutrient-dense forms of foods and beverages across all food groups, in recommended amounts, and within calorie limits.”1
Unfortunately, the USDA indicates that most Americans are not following a healthy dietary pattern. This impacts our health and well-being, our obesity levels, and our risk for chronic diseases.1
To help explore what this means and what we can do about it let’s break this healthy definition down further.
The focus on fats has shifted from “avoid all fats” to “avoid saturated fats”.2 That’s because healthy mono and polyunsaturated fatty acids, such as omega-3 fatty acids, help support energy, vitamin absorption, and heart and brain health.1 Some healthy sources of fat include seafood, nuts, seeds, olives, and avocados.1
On the other side of the spectrum are saturated fats, which are commonly found in high-fat meats, butter, whole-fat dairy products, and some oils. In high amounts, these fats can raise your “bad” LDL cholesterol levels and negatively impact your heart health.3 That’s why the USDA recommends limiting these to less than 10% of your total calories per day.1
How OLIPOP helps: Saturated fats are also found in small amounts in some healthier food items like nuts, seeds, eggs, oils, meat, and dairy products.1 This means there isn’t much room in your diet for adding in additional saturated fats through high-fat foods and beverages. By swapping high-fat beverages for OLIPOP’s 0g total fat, you can help reduce your saturated fat intake and support a healthier diet.
Nutrient-Dense Foods and Beverages
According to the USDA, the nutrient-dense foods and beverages that make up a healthy dietary pattern includes:1
- Vegetables Fruits (especially whole fruit)
- Grains (whole grains not refined grains)
- Dairy (or lactose-free or soy beverages as dairy-free alternatives)
- Protein (nuts, seeds, meats, poultry, eggs, seafood, beans, peas, lentils)
- Oils (such as vegetable oils)
These foods add beneficial vitamins and minerals and other health-promoting components to your diet. The USDA also recommends limiting your intake of the below food groups:1
- Added sugars
- Saturated fats
- Sodium (or salt)
How OLIPOP helps: Sugar-sweetened beverages are one of the biggest contributors to added sugar intake in the American diet.1 By swapping your high-sugar beverages for OLIPOP, you can help reduce your intake of added sugars while also adding botanicals, plant fibers, and prebiotics into your diet.
Nutrients of Public Health Concern
The USDA outlines in their 2020-2025 Dietary Guidelines for Americans that the biggest nutrients of public health concern today are:1
- Dietary Fiber
- Vitamin D
Most Americans are not getting enough of these essential nutrients. For example, over 90% of women and 97% of men are not getting enough fiber in their diet.1
Fiber helps aid in proper digestion, regulates your blood sugar levels, and keeps you feeling full for longer.4 It plays such an important role in your body’s metabolism that a diet low on fiber could lead to weight gain, constipation, blood sugar fluctuations, nausea, or exhaustion.3
How OLIPOP helps: A healthy diet involves making shifts in what you eat and drink to ensure you’re getting enough of the above nutrients in every meal. Here to support that goal is OLIPOP, which contains 9g of dietary fiber. This is 32% of your daily value of fiber in just one delicious can of soda! OLIPOP’s fiber comes from several different plants, including Chicory Root, Jerusalem Artichoke, and Cassava Fiber.
So, Is OLIPOP Healthy?
Given the definitions outlined by the FDA and USDA, OLIPOP is healthy because it helps reduce added sugar from your diet while supporting your intake of one of the biggest nutrients of public health concern: fiber.
While fruits and vegetables are the go-to when you think of “healthy” foods, there are other options that can also fit into a healthy lifestyle. That’s because every food and beverage item you consume makes up your dietary pattern. These food and beverage decisions determine whether that dietary pattern is healthy or unhealthy.
Even the smallest of choices, like a sugary soda, can tip the scale and add up over time to negatively impact your health. So while fruits and vegetables are important, so are all the other food and beverage decisions you make throughout the day.
And one of those decisions is what you choose to drink when you’re craving something sweet. That’s why we formulated OLIPOP to make it easier for people to reach adequate daily fiber intake and make positive steps to supporting their digestive health. All by crafting a soda that’s easy to enjoy and share.
While other sodas have 39g of sugar or more and zero nutritional value, every OLIPOP soda contains:
- Less than 50 calories
- 2-5g of sugar
- 9g of fiber
- Zero artificial sweeteners (or artificial anything!)
- Plant-based prebiotics and botanicals for both a sweet and healthy taste
When it comes to total grams of fiber, the FDA considers 3 grams or higher a “good” source of fiber and 5 grams or higher an “excellent” source of fiber.5 That makes OLIPOP’s 9 grams of fiber a “holy cow that’s amazing” source of fiber.
So while eating healthy involves all the food groups you need for a balanced and nutrient-dense meal, don’t forget to consider what you’re drinking. With OLIPOP, we help make that drink decision that much easier, without having to sacrifice delicious taste.
Want to learn more about all the reasons why OLIPOP is your healthier beverage alternative? Check out our OLIPOP Digest for all the latest resources, research, and information, or explore our other articles below:
More on Digestive Health:
- High Fiber Foods That You Can Easily Add to Your Diet
- Ultimate Guide to Plant Fiber
- OLIPOP & Digestive Health: Everything You Need To Know
- How much fiber should I be eating per day?
More on OLIPOP Ingredients:
- Cassava Root Fiber
- Chicory Root Inulin
- Jerusalem Artichoke Inulin
- Nopal Cactus
- Calendula Flower
- Marshmallow Root
- U.S. Department of Agriculture and U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. (2020, December). Dietary Guidelines for Americans, 2020–2025 (9th Edition). https://www.dietaryguidelines.gov/sites/default/files/2021-03/Dietary_Guidelines_for_Americans-2020-2025.pdf
- Food and Drug Administration. (2016, September). Use of the Term “Healthy” in the Labeling of Human Food Products: Guidance for Industry. U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. https://www.fda.gov/media/100520/download
- Fries, W. C. (2007, January 1). Is Your Diet Low In Fiber? WebMD. https://www.webmd.com/food-recipes/features/4-warning-signs-your-diet-may-lack-fiber
- Cleveland Health Clinic. (2021, February 8). Carbohydrates: Types & Health Benefits. Cleveland Clinic. https://my.clevelandclinic.org/health/articles/15416-carbohydrates
- Quagliani, D., & Felt-Gunderson, P. (2016). Closing America’s Fiber Intake Gap. American Journal of Lifestyle Medicine, 11(1), 80–85. https://doi.org/10.1177/1559827615588079
- By swapping high-fat beverages for OLIPOP’s 0g total fat, you can help reduce your saturated fat intake and support a healthier diet.
- Sugar-sweetened beverages are one of the biggest contributors to added sugar intake in the American diet.
- over 90% of women and 97% of men are not getting enough fiber in their diet.
5 min read
An RD Answers: Is Prebiotic Soda Good For You?
Prebiotic sodas are popping up on grocery store shelves. But are they healthy? Here are the reasons why an RD thinks prebiotic soda is a good choice.
7 min read
Meet Your Microbiome: Get To Know the Healthy Bacteria in Your Gut
A healthy gut microbiota can help support your immune health, digestive health, and mental health. Here is everything you need to know about your microbiome.