Many fruits are not recommended when you are trying to lose weight, because fruits tend to contain a lot of quickly digested sugars that rapidly raise blood sugar and insulin levels, which in turn facilitate fat storage. However, some fruits are okay while undergoing your diet plan. Below are some common notions about fruit consumption for you to consider and keep in mind. Also, don’t forget to watch the portion size for each type of fruit!
“An apple a day keeps the doctor away.”
Fiction! This old saying is completely false and does not work for an effective diet plan. One medium apple has 95 calories. So, if you had an apple a day, then that would add up to 34,675 extra calories per year! If you do want to enjoy an apple, aim for half of a small apple or less to keep the bariatric surgeon away!
“It is always best to wait until the fruit is ripe to eat.”
Fact! Often times, fruits in the grocery store are picked before they peak, because they have to travel a far distance before hitting the stands. Immature fruits have not had the chance to develop their full nutritional value. Though, keep in mind, that fruits often lose some of their goodness during travel time. This is one of the many reasons why growing your own fruits or buying them at a local farmer’s market is ideal.
“The fruit peel contains more nutrients than the flesh.”
That depends. There are some fruits whose skin carries a higher concentration of nutrients compared to the flesh. Some examples include blueberries, grapes, plums, guava, and kumquat. Blue- and purple- colored fruits are high in anthocyanin, which helps fight cardiovascular disease, cognitive decline, and cancer. Yellow fruits are rich in lutein (good for eye health, type 2 diabetes, and heart disease), xanthin (anti-aging properties, good for eye health, boosts the immune system), and carotenoids (also good for eye health, protects the skin, and promotes cardiovascular health). In general, eating all parts of a fruit will result in more fiber and is much more filling than any individual parts. Of course, once again, watch your portion sizes for each type of fruit to make sure you stay on track with your diet plan.
“Eating frozen, canned, or fresh fruit is exactly the same.”
Fiction! Though, this one is a little trickier to answer. Fresh fruits are always best if you can buy them ripe and in-season. Canned fruits are often packed in heavy or light syrup. If you do choose to go with canned, then only pick fruits canned in water or its own juice. Look for “no sugar added,” and be sure to drain fruits before consuming them. Frozen fruits are usually picked at their peak ripeness, which means the most nutrients are being captured and trapped. Most frozen fruits are washed to kill any bacteria and flash-frozen to lock in all the nutritional value. The act of freezing preserves food, so frozen fruits do not need any additives. But, just to be certain, always double-check the label to make sure there are no-added sugars or additives.
“Fruit smoothies are nutritious.”
That depends. If you are at home and making a smoothie with healthy ingredients like Greek yogurt, soy, or almond milk, then yes. However, if you are at a juice chain, then chances are that the smoothie is pure sugar and definitely a no-no for your diet plan.