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Fruits are Sweet But Quitting Sugar Doesn’t Mean You Have To Stop Eating Them! Here’s Why!

Fruits are Sweet But Quitting Sugar Doesn’t Mean You Have To Stop Eating Them! Here’s Why!

We all know sugar can damage our health in so many ways and this is why many of us choose to slash our daily sugar intake by eating and drinking more healthily.

Entering into a sugar detox program has many benefits but is the advice we’re being given accurate? Cutting out refined sugars is the obvious solution but some people suggest eliminating fruits that contain naturally occurring sugars and carbohydrates that contain both simple and complex sugars is also necessary to lessen our sugar intake. But is this true or by cutting out all types of sugars causing an imbalance in our diet?

We think sugar is the devil. Is it true?

When we hear the word sugar, we think sweet and this association in our mind can cause us to believe that cutting down on fruits is necessary for a low-sugar diet.

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But are naturally-occurring sugars such as fructose really as bad as processed or refined sugars? And are we actually restricting ourselves by eliminating them from our diet in the name of health?

Naturally-occurring sugar and refined sugar are actually the same

All sugar is made up of two components – fructose and glucose – and this applies to anything from chocolate cake to bananas. In other words, the molecular structure of all sugars is the same.

Our bodies process sugars by sending it from the blood stream to the pancreas which then releases insulin – a hormone that acts as your body’s sugar regulator. From there it’s either converted into energy or stored as fat in the muscles, liver or fat cells. Eat too much sugar and your body will start calling for more insulin release and over time can cause insulin resistance. This means it’s unable to efficiently convert sugars into useable energy. Of course, this can commonly lead to diabetes and other health problems.

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Although the sugar content is the same, fruits are still healthier for us

Despite the sugar structure being the same whether it’s a doughnut or a strawberry, the way our body processes fruit sugars is different to refined sugars.

Fruit is nutritionally valuable

First (and most obviously) fruit contains more than just sugars. They are packed full of vitamins, antioxidants and water that are beneficial for a healthy working body. This is comparable to products containing refined sugars that are pretty much nutritionally void, high in saturated fats and offer no extra benefits.

Fruit’s high fibre changes the way our body digests sugar

The second benefit of fruit is its fibre content. This is significant because the presence of fibre allows our bodies to break down the sugars in a more efficient way. Fibre slows down the digestion of glucose which means the body has more time to use the sugar as fuel rather than storing it as fat and not creating the sudden spike in insulin that can crash and cause low-sugar levels. This is beneficial because it won’t form the common cravings we get from sweets and treats.

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Fruit has less sugar by volume

The third reason why fruit can’t be fully equal to a slice of cake, is that fruit contains less sugar by volume in comparison. If you’re comparing 100g of strawberries to 100g of cake then cake will win in the ‘most-sugar’ competition.

Want to replace whole fruit with fruit juices? They are not the same!

This is where people can get confused because they will choose to drink orange juice or other fruit juices because they assume it’s healthy and the same as eating the whole fruit.

The problem with fruit juices is that they’re pretty much a concentrated source of fructose but with all the nutritional stuff taken out. That wonderful fibre that helps digest the sugars more efficiently is found in the skin and pulp of a whole fruit but the majority of it is removed from the juice you drink. This means the sugars get absorbed by the liver at a faster speed so basically acting as refined sugar does – spiking your insulin and mostly storing it as fat in your cells.

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Studies have found that a glass of fruit juice contains the same amount of sugar as a glass of Coca Cola [1] and as a liquid form with no nutrition present, it can cause havoc for your health.

Sugar is a necessary part of our diet!

Yes, while sugar has got a bad reputation over the years this is only due to the rise in refined sugar products and our increasing consumption of them. In fact, a study found that eating fruit on a daily basis actually decreased the risk of diabetes in women [2] as well as heart disease [3].

Sugar is a necessary part of our diet and there’s a reason why it occurs naturally in the foods we eat – it’s essential in providing our cells with energy in order for them to function properly. Therefore, eating naturally-occurring sugars such as fructose (or even lactose found in milk) will provide you with a healthy amount of sugar with the exception of fruit juices. Consuming sugar with fibre in fruit will be digested in the right way and allow your body to work effectively.

Featured photo credit: Unsplash.com via pexels.com

Reference

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Jenny Marchal

Freelance Writer

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Last Updated on March 13, 2019

How to Get out of a Rut: 12 Useful Ways to Get Unstuck

How to Get out of a Rut: 12 Useful Ways to Get Unstuck

Have you gotten into a rut before? Or are you in a rut right now?

You know you’re in a rut when you run out of ideas and inspiration. I personally see a rut as a productivity vacuum. It might very well be a reason why you aren’t getting results. Even as you spend more time on your work, you can’t seem to get anything constructive done. While I’m normally productive, I get into occasional ruts (especially when I’ve been working back-to-back without rest). During those times, I can spend an entire day in front of the computer and get nothing done. It can be quite frustrating.

Over time, I have tried and found several methods that are helpful to pull me out of a rut. If you experience ruts too, whether as a working professional, a writer, a blogger, a student or other work, you will find these useful. Here are 12 of my personal tips to get out of ruts:

1. Work on the small tasks.

When you are in a rut, tackle it by starting small. Clear away your smaller tasks which have been piling up. Reply to your emails, organize your documents, declutter your work space, and reply to private messages.

Whenever I finish doing that, I generate a positive momentum which I bring forward to my work.

2. Take a break from your work desk.

Get yourself away from your desk and go take a walk. Go to the washroom, walk around the office, go out and get a snack.

Your mind is too bogged down and needs some airing. Sometimes I get new ideas right after I walk away from my computer.

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3. Upgrade yourself

Take the down time to upgrade yourself. Go to a seminar. Read up on new materials (#7). Pick up a new language. Or any of the 42 ways here to improve yourself.

The modern computer uses different typefaces because Steve Jobs dropped in on a calligraphy class back in college. How’s that for inspiration?

4. Talk to a friend.

Talk to someone and get your mind off work for a while.

Talk about anything, from casual chatting to a deep conversation about something you really care about. You will be surprised at how the short encounter can be rejuvenating in its own way.

5. Forget about trying to be perfect.

If you are in a rut, the last thing you want to do is step on your own toes with perfectionist tendencies.

Just start small. Do what you can, at your own pace. Let yourself make mistakes.

Soon, a little trickle of inspiration will come. And then it’ll build up with more trickles. Before you know it, you have a whole stream of ideas.

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6. Paint a vision to work towards.

If you are continuously getting in a rut with your work, maybe there’s no vision inspiring you to move forward.

Think about why you are doing this, and what you are doing it for. What is the end vision in mind?

Make it as vivid as possible. Make sure it’s a vision that inspires you and use that to trigger you to action.

7. Read a book (or blog).

The things we read are like food to our brain. If you are out of ideas, it’s time to feed your brain with great materials.

Here’s a list of 40 books you can start off with. Stock your browser with only the feeds of high quality blogs, such as Lifehack.org, DumbLittleMan, Seth Godin’s Blog, Tim Ferris’ Blog, Zen Habits or The Personal Excellence Blog.

Check out the best selling books; those are generally packed with great wisdom.

8. Have a quick nap.

If you are at home, take a quick nap for about 20-30 minutes. This clears up your mind and gives you a quick boost. Nothing quite like starting off on a fresh start after catching up on sleep.

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9. Remember why you are doing this.

Sometimes we lose sight of why we do what we do, and after a while we become jaded. A quick refresher on why you even started on this project will help.

What were you thinking when you thought of doing this? Retrace your thoughts back to that moment. Recall why you are doing this. Then reconnect with your muse.

10. Find some competition.

Nothing quite like healthy competition to spur us forward. If you are out of ideas, then check up on what people are doing in your space.

Colleagues at work, competitors in the industry, competitors’ products and websites, networking conventions.. you get the drill.

11. Go exercise.

Since you are not making headway at work, might as well spend the time shaping yourself up.

Sometimes we work so much that we neglect our health and fitness. Go jog, swim, cycle, whichever exercise you prefer.

As you improve your physical health, your mental health will improve, too. The different facets of ourselves are all interlinked.

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Here’re 15 Tips to Restart the Exercise Habit (and How to Keep It).

12. Take a good break.

Ruts are usually signs that you have been working too long and too hard. It’s time to get a break.

Beyond the quick tips above, arrange for a 1-day or 2-days of break from your work. Don’t check your (work) emails or do anything work-related. Relax and do your favorite activities. You will return to your work recharged and ready to start.

Contrary to popular belief, the world will not end from taking a break from your work. In fact, you will be much more ready to make an impact after proper rest. My best ideas and inspiration always hit me whenever I’m away from my work.

Take a look at this to learn the importance of rest: The Importance of Scheduling Downtime

More Resources About Getting out of a Rut

Featured photo credit: Joshua Earle via unsplash.com

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