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Wednesday, July 29

Blueberry Hill (Louis Armstrong)

In the rush to avoid sugar, many people now are avoiding fruits.  They believe that because added sugars are bad, the same must apply to fruits, which also contain fructose.  However… this is completely wrong, because fructose is only harmful in large amounts and it is almost impossible to overeat fructose by eating fruit.

Fruits are loaded with fiber and water, and have significant chewing resistance.  For this reason, most fruits (like apples) take a while to eat and digest, meaning that the fructose hits the liver slowly.  You want that extra fiber (adding Metamucil to a glass of juice will not create the same effect in your body!), and it helps your digestive tract.

In the fruit hierarchy, choose fresh fruit, then dried fruit, with sweetened dried fruit a distant third, and juice in fourth place.

Many of the fruit juices on the market aren’t even “real” fruit juices. They consist of water, mixed with some sort of concentrate and a whole bunch of added sugar. But even if you get 100% real fruit juice, it is still a bad idea.  There is actually a lot of sugar in fruit juice, about as much as a sugar-sweetened beverage, but  there is no fiber and chewing resistance to slow down consumption, making it very easy to consume a large amount of sugar in a short period of time.

A word about organics...
Organic fruits and vegetables are healthier than conventional because they exclude the use of genetically modified organisms and synthetic pesticides and minimize the use of other pesticides.  However, don’t let that stop you from loading up on conventional produce if that is what you have access to.
Take it to the Next Level
You've heard of Superfoods, but…Superfruits?  Not every fruit qualifies.  Those deemed "super" by nutrition scientists are packed with antioxidants, fiber, vitamins and minerals, and other nutrients that can help you live longer, look better, and even prevent disease.  Blueberries, oranges, bananas, apples, kiwis, grapes, strawberries, and papayas — take your pick and take a bite, because these fruits are superfruits!
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