Brain Brawn & Body
Brain Brawn & Body blogs on health, nutrition/fitness, lifestyle, leisure and finances.
How Much Fruit Should You Eat a Day?
Current nutritional guidelines advise eating between 5-9 servings of fruits and vegetables a day. At first glance, that may seem difficult but broken up throughout the day into meals and snacks it’s doable.
How much of the servings should come from fruit and how much from vegetables?
A person can typically eat as many vegetables in a day as they want as long as they are prepared in a healthy way without deep frying or too many sauces or dips. Always look for variety, although green leafy types should be the preference.
To determine the right amount of fruit for a person, I found 3 helpful resources.
· The CDC offers a fruit and vegetable calculator to determine personal recommendations based on the calorie needs for your age, sex, and activity level. http://www.cdc.gov/nutrition/everyone/fruitsvegetables/howmany.html
· The American Diabetes Association offers portion recommendations and tips for fruit servings. http://www.diabetes.org/food-and-fitness/food/what-can-i-eat/fruits.html
· The resident dietitian at Cooking Light offers recommendations based also on age, sex and activity level. http://www.cookinglight.com/healthy-living/healthy-habits/how-many-fruits-vegetables-a-day-00412000069787/
I enjoy vegetables, but I love fruit. Okay, I have a sweet tooth! To avoid consuming too much sugar in our diet, even natural sugar from fruit, Dr. Melvin Page advises that we should limit our daily consumption of fructose, or fruit sugar, to 25 grams per day.
It’s hard to imagine that you can eat too much of a good thing, but you can. There are recommended daily allowances that we should be mindful of and even try to discipline ourselves to try to meet.
I start each morning with a banana – 7.1g. I have an apple during the day as a snack – 9.5g. If I eat my normal afternoon snack of raisins, almonds and peanuts, I add another 12.3g, so am at a total of 28.9g of fructose in one day which is greater than the recommended 25g. In season, I will have fruit with lunch or dinner as well, so after adding up my daily total, I eliminated raisins during the day and added celery or another option. Use the chart as a way to make fruit choices during the day.
How does fruit consumption affect those with diabetes? A new study in Nutrition Journal found that restricting fruit intake did not seem to affect diabetics. In technical terms, two test groups of Type 2 diabetics showed no significant difference in the level of glycosylated hemoglobin, which provides an indication of blood sugar level over time. The numerous beneficial effects of fruit in the diet seemed to outweigh any fruit restrictions.