If you’re keeping up with the latest nutrition trends, there are a lot of naysayers on the topic of fruit. But don’t be so fast to write it off…
We’ve all heard the saying “an apple a day keeps the doctor away!” There may be more truth to this than current diet culture wants us to believe. Many people have a fear of fruit, due to the propaganda fed to society by the diet industry. The trendy diets of today perpetuate this wave of fruit fear, leading us to believe that they are filled with unnecessary carbs and placing fruit sugar and processed/refined sugar in the same category, instead of understanding and differentiating between the two.
It is important to first understand that not all sugar is created equal. Fruit is classified as a carbohydrate, containing natural occurring sugars. When the body breaks down fruit sugar, it turns it into glucose, which provides necessary energy to your cells and is your body’s main source of fuel. The body breaks down all sugar the same way, but the process for fruit sugar is much slower. Fiber in fruit slows down the digestion of sugar and also helps fill you up- making it less likely to overeat. This is very different than the way that the body processes refined sugar, found in foods like candy, chocolate cake, or an ice cream cone.
Refined sugar contains no nutritional value, but rather empty calories that leave our bodies craving more of it. This is why you experience a sugar high after you drink a soda or eat a cookie. Refined sugar throws our sugar levels out of balance and is highly addictive. Refined sugar can be found under many different names in foods and is commonly added to make foods taste good or make them last longer.
Fruit has been known to be healthful and necessary for our well being since the beginning of time, and has many health benefits that help towards the prevention of disease. Fruit contains water, along with many beneficial minerals, vitamins, fiber, and antioxidants. There is evidence that eating whole fruits (in combination with vegetables) helps in the prevention of cancer, obesity, and heart disease. The fiber in fruit helps fill you up, which means that you’ll be less likely to overeat at meals that include fruit.
If you’re reading this as a person that mostly avoids eating fruits out of fear that the diet industry has instilled upon you, maybe it’s time to reconsider your beliefs on fruit and start reintroducing some fruit into your daily food intake. Try an apple and see how it makes your body feel. An apple has wonderful anti-inflammatory properties, leading me to believe that “an apple a day keeps the doctor away” really does have some truth behind it!
All Hail the TreadMighty,