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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 June 13, 2019

5 Fixes For Common Sleep Issues All Couples Deal With

5 Fixes For Common Sleep Issues All Couples Deal With

Sleeping next to your partner can be a satisfying experience and is typically seen as the mark of a stable, healthy home life. However, many more people struggle to share a bed with their partner than typically let on. Sleeping beside someone can decrease your sleep quality which negatively affects your life. Maybe you are light sleepers and you wake each other up throughout the night. Maybe one has a loud snoring habit that’s keeping the other awake. Maybe one is always crawling into bed in the early hours of the morning while the other likes to go to bed at 10 p.m.

You don’t have to feel ashamed of finding it difficult to sleep with your partner and you also don’t have to give up entirely on it. Common problems can be addressed with simple solutions such as an additional pillow. Here are five fixes for common sleep issues that couples deal with.

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1. Use a bigger mattress to sleep through movement

It can be difficult to sleep through your partner’s tossing and turning all night, particularly if they have to get in and out of bed. Waking up multiple times in one night can leave you frustrated and exhausted. The solution may be a switch to a bigger mattress or a mattress that minimizes movement.

Look for a mattress that allows enough space so that your partner can move around without impacting you or consider a mattress made for two sleepers like the Sleep Number bed.[1] This bed allows each person to choose their own firmness level. It also minimizes any disturbances their partner might feel. A foam mattress like the kind featured in advertisements where someone jumps on a bed with an unspilled glass of wine will help minimize the impact of your partner’s movements.[2]

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2. Communicate about scheduling conflicts

If one of you is a night owl and the other an early riser, bedtime can become a source of conflict. It’s hard for a light sleeper to be jostled by their partner coming to bed four hours after them. Talk to your partner about negotiating some compromises. If you’re finding it difficult to agree on a bedtime, negotiate with your partner. Don’t come to bed before or after a certain time, giving the early bird a chance to fully fall asleep before the other comes in. Consider giving the night owl an eye mask to allow them to stay in bed while their partner gets up to start the day.

3. Don’t bring your technology to bed

If one partner likes bringing devices to bed and the other partner doesn’t, there’s very little compromise to be found. Science is pretty unanimous on the fact that screens can cause harm to a healthy sleeper. Both partners should agree on a time to keep technology out of the bedroom or turn screens off. This will prevent both partners from having their sleep interrupted and can help you power down after a long day.

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4. White noise and changing positions can silence snoring

A snoring partner can be one of the most difficult things to sleep through. Snoring tends to be position-specific so many doctors recommend switching positions to stop the snoring. Rather than sleeping on your back doctors recommend turning onto your side. Changing positions can cut down on noise and breathing difficulties for any snorer. Using a white noise fan, or sound machine can also help soften the impact of loud snoring and keep both partners undisturbed.

5. Use two blankets if one’s a blanket hog

If you’ve got a blanket hog in your bed don’t fight it, get another blanket. This solution fixes any issues between two partners and their comforter. There’s no rule that you have to sleep under the same blanket. Separate covers can also cut down on tossing and turning making it a multi-useful adaptation.

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Rather than giving up entirely on sharing a bed with your partner, try one of these techniques to improve your sleeping habits. Sleeping in separate beds can be a normal part of a healthy home life, but compromise can go a long way toward creating harmony in a shared bed.

Featured photo credit: Becca Tapert via unsplash.com

Reference

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