You Give Fruit a Bad Name
We’ve heard so many clients say that “Fruit just doesn’t agree with me.” When asked why, one of the most popular responses is: “It makes me feel bloated, gassy, or causes abdominal discomfort and pain.”
To address this common reason for avoiding fruit let’s start by examining two very important facts:
- Fruit is the only food on earth that requires no digestion in the stomach. It contains its own digestive enzymes and is virtually predigested.
- Fruit is incredibly high in water content. Most fruits are comprised of 85 to 90% water! Even bananas are 75% water. As such, fruit passes through the stomach very quickly (20 to 30 minutes, even shorter for melons) before entering the intestines where its nutrients are absorbed by the body.
So, if fruit is mostly water and doesn’t demand much effort or energy from our digestive system, then why the gas, bloat and abdominal pain?
** The simple answer is that FRUIT SHOULD BE EATEN ON AN EMPTY STOMACH, not with anything or immediately following any other foods. If fruit is forced to remain in the stomach with other longer-digesting foods, it quickly ferments and interferes with the digestion of ALL the other food in the stomach. **
This is the #1 reason why many people say they have a “problem with fruit.” Most of the time, it’s not the fruits’ fault, it’s the improper consumption. When we eat a big meal and have a bowl of berries for dessert, the fruit mixes in with the undigested meal (often itself a poorly combined hodgepodge of carbs and proteins) or sits on top of it and actually ferments, with the sugar in fruit being converted to ethyl alcohol! This is the root of the problem. Eating fruit with cereal, ice cream, yogurt, on or in cakes wreaks havoc in the digestive system.
So how should we eat fruit?
In addition to eating fruit on an empty stomach, fruit must be eaten in a fresh, ripe state whether in a juice or in its whole state. Canned, cooked fruit, or pasteurized juice (such as juice made from concentrate) will ferment in the stomach, turn to acid and actually contribute to the body’s toxic load.
And when should we eat fruit?
It is best to eat fruit during your body’s elimination cycle each day between 4am and 12 noon. Fresh fruit and fruit juices, again due to the high-water content, will deliver nutrients and glucose to energize you early in the day AND have the effect of assisting the body in cleansing itself of toxic residue. If you are going to eat more solid foods in the morning, allow approximately 30 minutes afteryour joyous indulgence of fruits.
IMPORTANT: We will not get into the organic vs. conventional debate in this blog (we will in the future), but we do STRESS buying organic when purchasing fruit because of the use of pesticides on so many crops. The residue from these pesticides gets absorbed by the fruit, especially berries, apples, peaches, grapes, cherries, pears and nectarinesand make their way into your body.
Here are some other powerful facts about fruits in general:
- Fruits contain all the necessary nutrients required by the body for sustaining life including glucose for energy, vitamins, minerals, and amino acids for the building of protein (yes, you can get some protein from fruits). In addition, some fruits like avocados contain healthy Omega 3 fat!
- Fruits contain polyphenols (flavonoids, phenolic acids, stilbenes, lignans) which have been found to have many benefits including lowering Type 2 diabetes, reducing inflammation in the body, and lowering the risk of heart disease and obesity.
- Fruits are high in antioxidants. Antioxidants are critical for neutralizing harmful free radicals in the body.
- Fruits advertise themselves with an amazing color display of red, purple, green yellow, orange and blue and pack a delicious dose of sugar that the body can use for energy while signaling the pleasure part of our brain. They are designed specifically so you will desire eating them! So, enjoy and indulge in one of nature’s greatest pleasures!
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