GREENSBORO, N.C. — Appropriately, considering the looming cold and flu season, an old claim is re-circulating Facebook, almost two years to the day since the VERIFY team de-bunked it. The post, in various forms, alleges the cure-all for the stomach bug is not an antibiotic or over-the-counter medicine...it's grape juice.
Good Morning Show viewer Susan Atkinson asked, "Can you VERIFY? This copied post showed on my wall recently, and I wondered if it was true: 'It's that time of year...I make my family drink grape juice daily from now until March. Just a few sips each day. It keeps the stomach bug from attaching to your digestive system, if you are exposed to the virus. This will be my 5th year doing this with 100% success! I hate throwing up and hate cleaning it up. This hasn't failed me, and I'm so thankful I learned about it. Had to share...be well.' Wondered if this is true."
This claim sounds familiar. Two years ago, another viewer noticed a similar post on a mom blog, claiming grape juice changes your intestinal tract's pH, making it more difficult for stomach bug viruses to multiply."
- Krista Kiger - registered dietitian, Novant Health
As previously verified, registered dietitian Krista Kiger said the claim about grape juice changing an intestinal tract's pH is inaccurate.
"PH levels in our digestion process are so different, so variable, that if a virus can get in through your system and survive those levels, or those pHes, there's no research that shows grape juice can trump the digestive pHes," she said.
But, grape juice and plain grapes are great anti-oxidants, which keep cells healthy. They can help prevent a person from getting sick in the first place. And, there is research in the Journal of Nutrition suggesting grapes can decrease the risk of cardiovascular disease.
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