*I am not a medial professional. If you have health concerns, before making any changes, please consult a physician.
Sugar detoxes are becoming more and more popular, but one big question a lot of people have when starting their detox is: “What about fruit?” We all know fruit has sugars, so naturally our panic alarm goes off in our head. There is tons of talk these days about the damage that fructose can do to your health and fructose is in fruits. That’s a pretty scary thought. If you are supposed to avoid fructose, does this include fruit? We grew up learning how great fruit is for us…so shouldn’t it still be included in our diet?
Many people have different theories on this. I don’t know about you but personally, I love hearing evidence backed up through serious scientific studies. So I’m going to break down a few different sugar studies that have been done specifically to determine whether or not fruit is a sugar we should keep or kick to the curb.
Beyond fruit, fructose is most common these days in added sugars and of course high fructose corn syrups. Both of these things are lining the shelves of grocery stores and are becoming harder and harder to avoid. These bad sugars are everywhere even though fructose has been linked to different illnesses like liver disease and hypertension. So, didn’t I just back myself into a corner if fructose has been linked to these terrible things and is found in our fruit? Stay with me.
A study was conducted at the University of Palermo in Italy found that fruit fructose did not have the same negative effects on the liver as high fructose corn syrup did. Another study done with the University of Colorado found that doing two separate sugar-free diets, one with fruit sugar and one without fruit sugar showed that the people who continued to eat the fruits had better weight loss results and remained all around healthier. So, as a woman who stands strongly on the “eat whole food” for optimal health belief, I am please to tell you fruits are A OK. So if you are planning on beginning a sugar detox, let’s chat a little bit about why fruit is not only OK, it is encouraged…even if you don’t follow a sugar free diet!
Why is there a difference between the whole fruit itself and just the fructose? It’s the fiber and antioxidants that come along with the fructose in the fruit itself. Fiber slows down our digestion and allows for a slower release of the sugar into our system which means it gets used for energy. This is why it is so crucial to remember the importance of eating whole, natural foods and to keep a heavily plant based diet. So, if you are planning a detox in your future, I highly suggest sticking with the fruits not only because it will aid in weight loss, the fructose in the fruits can actually help curb your cravings when it comes to the naughty kinds of sugars you want to avoid.
Further studies have shown that the more fruit you eat, the better. Fruits can help regulate blood sugar, heal your gut and provides lasting energy your body truly needs.
There is a time that I personally would recommend cutting fruits and that is if you are struggling with certain gut problems that feed off sugars. Bacteria will use sugar to feed of of and multiply. If you are struggling with Candida, leaky gut or other digestive issues, cutting the fruit (at least temporarily) might be a good option. There is a great article on everydayhealth.com that gives some tips on how to heal you gut. Spoiler alert: the first recommendation is to cut sugars.
The information from this post and more can be laid out here for you by Dr. Michael McGregor with NutritionFacts.org