Fruitarian Diet – Important Things Everyone Should Know
Fruitarians follow a diet that comprises fruits, nuts and seeds, vegetables, grains and animal products. If your diet consists of 75% or more fruit, consider yourself a fruitarian, or frugivore.
Though fruits help keep your physical and mental health in line as they pack healthy antioxidants, vitamins and minerals, but too much of anything is bad for you and fruits are no exception.
Why Large Amounts of Fruit Are Unhealthy For You?
Fruits contain a simple sugar called fructose, which metabolizes to fat in your liver. Consuming too much fructose exerts a negative impact on your metabolism and endocrine system. Furthermore, eating large amounts of fruit heightens your risk of a number of health conditions such as cancer, insulin resistance, inflammation, fatty liver disease, abdominal obesity, elevated triglycerides, diabetes and leptin resistance. You may also suffer from nutritional deficiencies, including calcium, zinc, iron and vitamin B-12. These nutritional deficiencies can further lead to bad nails, neurological disorders, dental carries, brittle hair, dry skin, decreased red blood cell count and low hemoglobin. Fruits also have a diuretic effect and can give rise to low sodium and low blood pressure.
Connection Between Fructose and Pancreatic Cancer
About 44,000 fresh cases are diagnosed in the United States every year, and 37,000 people die of pancreatic cancer.
Your pancreas has two types of glands: exocrine gland, which produces enzymes that break down fats and proteins, and endocrine gland, which makes hormones that help balance your blood sugar. Interestingly, a 2010 study published in the journal “Cancer Research” suggests a possible role of fructose in pancreatic cancer. One of the main functions of pancreas is to produce insulin, which your body uses to process blood sugar, and in vitro studies have established that insulin boosts the growth of pancreatic cancer cells. The research study in question showed that cancer cells can metabolize fructose at the drop of a hat to speed up their growth. Researchers now believe that diet and lifestyle may trigger up to a third of all types of cancers. Therefore, to ward off all types of cancer, keep your insulin levels stable.
Does This Mean That You Should Eliminate Fruit From Your Diet?
A simple and straightforward answer is no. Don’t eliminate fruit entirely; instead, eat them in small amounts to stay in the pink of health. Replace the fruit with 50-70 percent of your calories from healthy fat and make sure to eat high quality proteins in moderate amounts that provide all of the essential amino acids. In fruits, fructose is mixed with other nutrients such as vitamins, minerals, fiber and beneficial phytonutrients that help moderate the negative metabolic effects. With that said, an all-fruit diet is invariably an all-fructose diet, which can spell disaster for your health. To optimize your health, consider all sources of fructose, including fruits.
Confine your fructose consumption to 25 grams a day. However, if you suffer from health problems associated with fructose ingestion such as metabolic syndrome, obesity, insulin resistance, heart disease or cancer, cut your total fructose consumption down to 15 grams per day. Remember, your body needs protein, fat and carbohydrates to function at its optimal level. By following an all-fruit diet, you will fall short of meeting the recommended amounts of these nutrients, including protein. And, if you eat mainly plant sources of protein, then your protein needs may be very much higher than other nutrients.
Here is a list of fruits with their fructose content
Some fruits have low concentrations of fructose, while some have lots of fructose. One cup of cranberries contains 0.7 grams of fructose; 2 medium guava provide you 2.2 grams of fructose. One cup of raspberries has about 3 grams of fructose, while one cup of cherries offers 4 grams of fructose. One medium pear gives you 11.8 grams of fructose, whereas one cup of seedless grapes contains about 12.4 grams of fructose. One medium apple provides 9.5 grams of fructose. One medium banana and orange contain 7.1 grams and 6.1 grams of fructose, respectively. And, one cup of dried apricots contains about 16.4 grams of fructose.
How To Find Out Whether You’re Susceptible To Fructose Damage or Not?
Be mindful of your fruit intake if you have high insulin levels. To be on the safe side, get your fasting insulin level checked by your doctor. However, if you have high cholesterol, high blood pressure, yeast infections, diabetes or weight problems, it is highly likely you have insulin resistance syndrome. You can also get your uric acid levels checked to find out your susceptibility to fructose damage. The higher your uric acid, the more sensitive you are to fructose damage. The healthy range of uric acid is between 3 and 5.5 milligrams per deciliter (mg/dl). The normal uric acid level for men is 4 mg/dl and for women is 3.5 mg/dl.
Is There Such a Thing As a Perfect Diet?
Nutritional requirements vary from person to person; hence, eat according to your body type. There are three metabolic type diets: the protein type diet, the carbo type diet and the mixed type diet. If you are a protein type, you will not benefit from fruits since they contain carbohydrates. Foods that would prove valuable to you include tofu, quinoa, soy foods, yogurt, nut butters and legumes. If you are a carbohydrate type, you can indulge in fruits but in moderate amounts. Other foods that may benefit your health are vegetables, whole grains and low-fat dairy products. And, if you are a mixed type, consume proteins, fats and carbohydrates in equal proportions. Both protein type and carbo type foods will work in your favor. In addition, eat the correct types of fat such as coconut, olive oil, butter made from raw grass-fed organic milk, palm oil, avocados, almonds, pecans, grass-fed meats and organic pastured egg yolks; fat is far more satiating than carbs.
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