Whole Prunes and Prune Juice … Fruit for All Ages

The tradition of serving prunes and prune juice is as common now as it has ever been, as dietitians and foodservice directors seek out natural food sources to address dietary concerns. One of these concerns is digestive health, for which prunes and prune juice have long been associated.

Some ascribe the laxative function to the fibre content of prunes. A 100g serving of prunes contains 7.1g fibre, and eating 100g of prunes daily contributes to normal bowel function. A 100g serving of prunes also contains 15.1g of sorbitol, a sugar alcohol thought to act as an osmotic laxative.

As part of EU labelling laws, for products that contain more than 10% added polyols e.g. sorbitol, it is necessary to add a cautionary note about the laxative effect of polyols. However, this is not required for foods containing naturally occurring sorbitol, such as prunes. Daily prune intakes of 171g in men and 140g in women* (equivalent to 25.8g and 21.14g sorbitol respectively) have been demonstrated to be well tolerated.
*Harrold J, Hughes G, Boyland E, Williams N, McGill R, Blundell J, Finlayson G, Higgs J, Harland J, Halford J (2014) Dried fruit (prune) consumption does not undermine active weight management or produce adverse gastrointestinal effects. As presented at The European Congress on Obesity by The European Association for the Study of Obesity, 2014.

More information on prunes and digestive health can be found in the Nutrition Facts and Research section of this site. For product specifications, visit our Product Information page and Technical Bulletins.