Smoothies and fruit juices are a new risk to health, US scientists warn.

Fruit juices and smoothies represent a new risk to our health because of the amount of sugar the apparently healthy drinks contain, warn the US scientists who blew the whistle on corn syrup in soft drinks a decade ago.Barry Popkin and George Bray pointed the finger at high fructose corn syrup in soft drinks in 2004, causing a huge headache for the big manufacturers, including Coca-Cola and Pepsi. "Smoothies and fruit juice are the new danger," said Popkin, a distinguished professor at the department of nutrition at the University of North Carolina, in an interview with the Guardian.

He added: "It's kind of the next step in the evolution of the battle. And it's a really big part of it because in every country they've been replacing soft drinks with fruit juice and smoothies as the new healthy beverage. So you will find that Coke and Pepsi have bought dozens [of fruit juice companies] around the globe."

"Unless Coca-Cola drastically reduces its marketing for sugary drinks, its strategy to reach more people more often will mean that it pumps record levels of sugar into our diets," said Charlie Powell, campaigns director of Sustain.

"This is a business model that is unhealthy and unsustainable, perfectly highlighting the 'profit versus public health' conflict of interest endemic in the sugary drinks industry."

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