How Much Fruit Is Too Much?
Even though fruits are great foods loaded with nutrients, they also contain fructose. Fructose in excessive quantities can slow down thyroid function and increase glycation. Glycation in simple terms is browning, like the browning that makes crust in bread. It is the bonding of a protein with a sugar molecule without the controlling action of an enzyme. Fructose is the worst glycation agent because it does not raise insulin. In other words, the insulin is not getting it into muscle cells. Hence, it lingers around and wreaks metabolic havoc. As a consequence, various cells in your body and also DNA may accumulate substantial damage over time. Damage by glycation results in stiffening of the collagen in the blood vessel walls, leading to high blood pressure, especially in diabetes.
High-fructose corn syrup found in processed foods is the worst offender, however, too much fruit in your diet can also lead to the problems mentioned. Don’t eliminate fruit, but if you are trying to lose weight or are concerned about your metabolism, limit fructose from all sources to 5 to 10 grams a day. For very active individuals, 20 to 30 grams of fructose should be the maximum intake. Berries are your best bet for fruit because they are low in fructose and are jam-packed with antioxidants. Other great options are apricots, kiwi and grapefruit. A single medium banana will give you over 5g of fructose. Dried fruits are always packed with it, also grapes, mangoes, plantains and pears, so be sensible with those. If improving body composition is your main goal, I suggest limiting fruit to a maximum of two servings daily – with breakfast and post-workout shake or meal.
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