Since childhood, we have heard how important fruits and berries are for health. However, no one specified in what quantity and when to eat them. Let’s find out how many sweet gifts of summer we can eat per day without harming our figure or health.
Fruits are a perfect source of vitamins and energy for the body, they are rich in antioxidants and fiber, which is necessary for the smooth functioning of the intestines. You can even tell by the color of the fruit what kind of beneficial elements it is enriched with. For example, green fruits (kiwi, lime, pears, green apples) contain calcium as well as the plant compounds lutein and indole, which help strengthen vision, bones and teeth. Pomegranates, strawberries, cherries, cherries and other red fruits contain two main pigments: lycopene and anthocyanin.
Lycopene slows the development of atherosclerosis and improves cardiovascular function. Anthocyanin, in turn, has an anti-inflammatory effect, promotes visual acuity and prevents obesity and diabetes. Orange fruits (peaches, pineapple, sea buckthorn, citrus fruits) help support the heart, vision and immune system thanks to alpha- and beta-carotene. Purple fruits (plums, blueberries, blackberries, dark grapes) are similarly colored due to their content of plant compounds such as anthocyanin and resveratrol. Resveratrol is a substance that prevents aging, has a pronounced anti-inflammatory effect, as well as lowering cholesterol and reducing the risk of cancer and Alzheimer’s disease.
But despite all the variety of useful substances, you should remember that fruits contain a lot of fast carbohydrates, in particular fructose and glucose. Can I get fat from fruit? When we consume glucose, the level of insulin in the blood rises, contributing to its absorption into the cells. This gives us a feeling of fullness. Fructose, on the other hand, suppresses the satiety hormone leptin and does not reduce the hunger hormone ghrelin. This explains why we can eat fruit in large quantities. So if you want to get the most out of eating fruit, you need to stick to certain limits.
general practitioner, nutritionist
– All cells in our body need glucose as the main source of energy. If one eats too much fruit, it is possible to “overfeed” the body so much that the cells feel “full”, while the adipose tissue always opens its “gate” and triggers as much glucose as the person eats. And the more actively adipose tissue receives glucose, the faster it begins to grow. Therefore, it matters when and how much carbohydrates to eat. It is undesirable to eat carbohydrates after six o’clock in the evening, because at this time the body’s ability to produce insulin (insulin transports glucose to all cells) decreases. You have to be careful not to eat most fruit in the evening. After 6:00 p.m., the body works as a thrifty host and stores everything, unfortunately, in fatty tissue. It is recommended to eat no more than 300 grams of fruit. This amount of carbohydrates we will not harm ourselves – it will not lead to obesity or diabetes. Fruit in a competent diet should be used as a separate meal, for example as a snack. After breakfast or lunch, fruit can be eaten, but not immediately – at least an hour and a half should pass.
The World Health Organization recommends eating at least two servings of fruit a day. You can see what one serving is like in the following pictures.
One small apple = one serving
1 large banana = 1 serving
1 large orange = 1 serving
1 cup blueberries (about 90 berries) = 1 serving
32 grapes (sultanas) = 1 serving
1 large peach = 1 serving
1 medium pear = 1 serving
About 8 large strawberries = 1 serving
1 cup pineapple chunks (half a medium pineapple) = 1 serving
¼ part melon (one cup sliced melon) = 1 serving
1 cup sliced mango = 1 serving
1 medium grapefruit = 1 serving
So how do you decide which fruit to eat so that you don’t put on weight? First of all, when choosing a fruit, do not rely on its caloric value, but solely on its glycemic index.