Josh Bowen: Are All Fruits Created Equal

joshAs children we were always taught to eat our vegetables and our fruits, that these held a certain superior nutritional value to all other foods. And how that could be true it does not come without the phrase, “this over that.”

For our entire existence on earth, we have been eating fruit. If you recall, apples were the cause of some pretty hairy stuff in the days of Adam and Eve. However, for the 21st century health and physique conscious individuals, some fruits may be better than others. So to take a stab at this conundrum I will look at certain fruits that could be better options than other fruits. But first..

I truly believe there are no bad foods, just better options. In certain cases it may be OK to eat certain things in other cases not so much. Also, generally speaking, most whole fruit would be a better option than most any processed food you can find in the grocery store. This article is about which are better options and show you that not all fruits are created equal.

There are litany of fruits available to us in all different categories. Lets look at the most well known fruits:

Apples
Apples are a great snack and provide the phytochemicals your body needs to ward off to disease and sickness. The old adage, “an apple a day keeps the doctor away.” may be overstated but it isn’t too far from the fruit. Another component of apples that may them great choices are the fiber in the skin. Fiber helps keep the digestive system “regular” as well as blunting the effect of insulin.

Bananas
Probably the biggest associated with bananas is potassium. However, potassium can be attained from broccoli just as well as it can from bananas. If eaten too much, gastro-intestinal problems can arise. Also, very few grams of fiber in a banana.

Grapes
Grapes are one of the biggest culprits of sugar overload. That’s why they make such delicious wine. If you love grapes, try and limit yourself to ten or twelve at a time. Naturally, raisins, the dried counterparts of grapes, have even more sugar which is used in the drying and preserving process.

Avocados
Most people forget that these are a fruit. Avocados pack a ton of healthy fats so they are naturally higher in calories but the Omega 3 packed fat helps with inflammation and body fat loss. It is recommended to eat only half of one per day.

Dried Fruits
Dates and other dried fruit like figs, cherries, banana, and pineapple, contain a lot of sugar that is used to retain the flavor lost during dehydration. Dried fruit also loses a lot of its nutritional value during this transition, so whenever you can, try and find fruits in their original condition.

Some examples of fruit and their sugar content:
1 cup strawberries = 8g sugar
1 cup blueberries = 5g sugar
1 banana = 15-20g sugar
1 cup pineapple = 17g sugar

Moral to the story…chose strawberries and blueberries over bananas and pineapples.

In closing, just like in any food group, there will be better options that some. Remember not all sugar is created equal either. A pineapple is much better than a candy bar, even they may have similar sugar counts. BUT it does not mean you should eat pineapple all day every day. True enough, it would be packed with vitamins and minerals a candy bar wouldn’t, plus it would have more water content thus leading to more satiety than a candy bar. However, the amount of calories could be lessened by eating a strawberry than a pineapple.

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