We all know that fruit is one of the most nutritionally dense food items. Not only in the form of natural sugar and energy but also minerals, vitamins and phytonutrient-wise. But the latest buzz in health and fitness suggests that fruits must be totally shunned due to their carb and sugar content. If you are just as surprised as we are and don’t want to quit eating fruits, this one’s for you. Carlyne Remedios, Group Manager – Clinical Practices, Nutrition & Product Development at Digestive Health Institute by Dr Muffi, answers 5 basic questions about fruit consumption.
What Is The Importance Of Fruits?
Firstly, let’s us start by understanding the importance of including fruits in our diet. Fruits are an excellent source of fibre. Fibre not only aids weight loss but also helps keep your bowels functioning well. Fruits are also power-packed with a variety of vitamins and minerals and phytonutrients. Different coloured fruits have different phytonutrients. For example, betacarotene in present in orange fruits like oranges, apricots and cantaloupe; lycopene in red and pink coloured fruits like grapefruit, tomatoes, and watermelon; anthocyanidins in red and purple coloured berries like blueberries, blackberries, raspberries and cranberries.
Do Fruits Make You Put On Weight?
Fruits are low-calorie foods and should be consumed in its most natural form to avail its benefits that will aid in optimum weight loss. In order to avoid weight gain with fruits, one should avoid consuming fruits in the form of juices or sweetened pulp, canned with syrup or preserved with sugar or salt etc.
Eating fruit in its natural form is the absolute best way to consume fruit, this way you get all the nutrients that the fruit has to offer. Fruit juice (freshly pressed or otherwise) is not recommend as you consume only the sugar of the fruit devoid of the fiber and nutrients. Eating fruit with its peel (whenever possible) is great, as one gets all the fibre and nutrients. You can add fresh whole fruit to smoothies once in a while in order to meet up your fibre intake in the form of fruits.
How Many Fruits Should You Eat In A Day?
2 servings of fruits a day are recommended. 1 serving is what would fit in the palm of your hand. For example, a medium-sized apple or 3-4 plums or a medium-sized orange or 10 -12 grapes.
Nothing is good for you in excess. Everything that you eat should be eaten in moderation. People suffering from diabetes, especially, should be careful of eating too much fruit at a time as it does increase the glycemic load and could potentially spike blood sugar levels.
Can Fruit Consumption Cause Bloating?
Fruits are a rich source of fiber. Loading up on too much fiber or increasing your fruit intake all of a sudden could potentially cause bloating. It is always best to gradually increase your fibre intake to prevent gas, bloating and cramps. If you feel constantly bloated because of eating too many fruits, then you could be intolerant to fructose (fructose is a sugar present in fruits). People suffering from IBS or Irritable bowel syndrome could also experience bloating post consumption of fruits due to the fibre present in them.
Fresh fruits or dried fruits are a brilliant alternative to eating chocolates, mithai or desserts. So relish your local and seasonal produce of fruits but be mindful of the recommended amount stated above!