When you cut out sugar, it’s expected that you’ll be avoiding Cola and Gummie Bears, but what about fruit?
Don’t worry – I don’t think you should cut out fresh fruit either. At least not forever… Here’s what you should know so you can still eat a juicy peach.
1. Can you eat fruit when you quit eating sugar?
- Believe it or not… yes, you can!
- We know fruit has sugar in it, but whole fresh fruit also has plenty of fiber and nutrients to help slow down the sugar damage to your liver and brain.
- Our bodies are designed to metabolize the amount of fructose contained in 1–2 small pieces of fruit a day. It’s other sources of added sugar you might want to reconsider.
- When you up the fruit intake, you should also up the veggies.
2. Why dried fruit and fruit juice is a no-no.
- Fresh fruit contains a lot of fluid, which helps fill us up when ingested. But dried fruit has had all of the water removed, concentrating the sugars (and not in a good way).
- 1/2 a cup of fresh cranberries contains less than a teaspoon of sugar. But one cup of dried cranberries contains a whopping 9 teaspoons of sugar. What?
- Dried fruit also contains preservatives and polyunsaturated oils to stop the fruit from sticking together.
- Plus, while our full-alarm signal is triggered after eating one or two apricots, it’s nearly impossible to stop after one or two dried ones.
- Fruit juice is a problem for similar reasons as dried fruit.
- While smoothies are made by pureeing whole fruit and vegetables into a thick drink, juices involve extracting the juice only – tossing the nutrient-dense pulp.
- Don’t try fruit juice from the stores. A single cup of orange can have 8–10 teaspoons of sugar (that’s as much as a can of Coke!). Don’t do it.
3. Great low-fructose fruits.
- I am a big supporter of all fruit. As long as it’s not dried or mashed into juice concentrate, whole fiber fruit is always going to be a better alternative for you than highly processed snacks.
- But if you’ve just recently cut back sugar and you want to continue sticking to low-fructose fruit (to keep from getting back on that sugar train) these are good options to stick with:
- Blueberries and raspberries.
- Honeydew melon.
- Pear (with skin).
- Coconut (although not coconut sugar).
4. The high-fructose fruits you might want to try and avoid.
- Just Eat Real Food. But while reducing your sugar intake, I recommend limiting the following fruit wherever possible; only because of their high fructose to glucose ratio.
- Bananas (stick to half a banana per serve).
- Mangos (stick to half a mango per serve).
5. How I recommend eating fruit.
- Always eat fruit in its whole form.
- Eat fruit as part of a meal (with things like nuts, seeds, cheese and avocado).
- If you have fruit as a snack, add fat and protein.
- Eat fruit that’s in season.
- Opt for low-fructose fruit whenever you can.
- Stick to 1–2 pieces of fruit a day.