That’s a good question. A question that many people have asked me, especially when they are dealing with a sugar addiction or are trying to reduce sugar in general.
They say, “Do I quit fruit? How does this affect me?”
And the reality is that fruit is sugar – it is fructose. Your body treats fructose just like any other sugar – sucrose, glucose and anything else. We are biologically wired without a cut off.
We aren’t wired to cut off or “control ourselves” with fruit.
When humans were hunters and gatherers, coming across and ingesting fruit was rare. That’s why there’s no shut off. The sugar in fruit provided the immediate energy we humans needed after laboring to care for ourselves each day and we burned it off every day that we consumed it.
Now, we live in a world where sugar is all around us, in everything, so we gorge and binge. We never feel full when we eat sugar.
Fruit is good because it has water and fiber that helps to reduce absorption and slow down it’s digestion, but it is still sugar. Your body still treats it the same way, uses insulin to process it and store it as fat.
If you are eating a healthy and balanced diet with protein, healthy fats, and mostly non-starchy vegetables, adding fruit is good for you. However, if you are eating processed, pre-packaged or fast food, you are getting way more sugar than you need already.
Fruit is nature’s candy. If you already get enough sugar in your diet, adding fruit to that already poor diet won’t benefit you.
So if you are struggling with sugar addiction or are trying to lower your sugar intake, it’s time to decide to eliminate all the processed and refined sugars and flours first. Think of them as poison because they are.
If you find yourself bingeing on fruit (eating 3-6 big peaches or a whole bunch of grapes, for example), then it’s time to look at that behavior and get honest with yourself: sugar addiction is running the show. And that’s okay. 🙂
You aren’t a “bad” or “messed up” person. There is NOTHING wrong with you. You aren’t cheating on yourself. Simply, the brain chemicals and reward centers in your brains have been programmed for addiction and those chemicals and programs are running the show.
If that’s the case, it’s a good idea for you to eliminate fruit for a few months as well so that you can get your hormones and brain rewired. After just 14 days, you’ll crave significantly less sugar. After 3 months, sugar will not even be an issue and having some berries with heavy whipping cream or 1 peach won’t even be a big deal. It will be just another tasty nourishing food you use to add variety and color to your diet.
However, if you are cutting fruit first because you don’t want to eliminate the flour, oreos, and processed packaged diet foods, then you are not helping yourself.
You are fueling the sugar addiction. Don’t let the addiction control you, make excuses and rationalize behaviors.
The moral of the story is, if you are looking to reduce the amount of sugar in your diet, eliminate and crowd out the processed stuff first.
(Crowding out means replacing what you remove with GOOD stuff. Don’t just eat less. That doesn’t help. If something leaves your diet, put something in it’s place, like pre-prepared, bull fat, high quality protein, fresh vegetable dense foods.)
If you are in the beginning process, crowding out all forms of sugar until you are detoxed and you are at a baseline of a non-sugar addiction person. Then treat fruit like nature’s candy. A candy you eat in small amount. A cupped hand is good portion – about half a cup twice per day.
If you have any questions, ask me here.
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