How Much Fruit Is Too Much Fruit?
“Eat your fruits and veggies” is only a partly good recommendation.
Because it blurs the lines. It makes it appear that fruits and veggies are all lumped into one broad category and therefore interchangeable with one another. As if to say, “Don’t like veggies? No problem. Just have more fruit.”. Which is far, far from a good idea.
If one were only to eat fruit and no veggies, the outcome would be a diet far too high in sugar (yes, natural sugar, but still, sugar), and too low in all the many nutrients that veggies provide us, including:
- Most vegetables are naturally low in fat and calories. None have cholesterol.
- Vegetables are important sources of many nutrients, including potassium, dietary fiber, folate, vitamin A, and vitamin C.
- Diets rich in potassium help to maintain healthy blood pressure
- Dietary fiber from vegetables, as part of an overall healthy diet, helps reduce blood cholesterol levels and may lower risk of heart disease. Fiber is important for proper bowel function. It helps reduce constipation and diverticulosis. Fiber-containing foods such as vegetables help provide a feeling of fullness with fewer calories.
- Folate (folic acid) helps the body form red blood cells.
- Vitamin A keeps eyes and skin healthy and helps to protect against infections.
- Vitamin C helps heal cuts and wounds and keeps teeth and gums healthy. Vitamin C aids in iron absorption.
When we move toward a Paleo standard of living, veggies must comprise at least 40 – 50% of each and every meal. They’re what we add to our plates once we take away all those inflammatory, acid-forming, non Paleo items like grain products, legumes and all processed, refined carbohydrates.
So how much fruit should we eat, then?
There’s no blanket rule. I’d be hard pressed to randomly issue a declaration that suggestion one piece per day, or two, or whatever the number may be.
Keep it simple. If you’re very active, you’ll probably need more fruit (ie sugar) throughout the day, than someone who is sedentary. But even then, make it the minority and focus on what I refer to as copious amounts of veggies; the more variety the better!