Nutrient Nation: Is fruit bad for you?

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Has your Facebook feed been bogged down by the anti-sugar craze? That’s not necessarily a bad thing. Added processed sugars are in everything from cookies and cakes to ketchup, coffee creamer, granola bars, pasta sauce, and everything in between.

The American Heart Association recommends that women limit their sugar intake to 6 tsp of added sugar which equals 25 grams, or 100 calories. They also recommend that men limit their intake to 9 tsp of added sugar which equals 36 grams, or 150 calories.

You might have notice that fruit somehow found its way into the spotlight…and not in a good way.

There is a huge difference between eating an apple and drinking a soda. Fruit (like an apple) has fiber, vitamins, minerals, water, and antioxidants that are nowhere to be found in refined sugars (like a soda). The fiber helps slow the rate of carbohydrate (sugar) absorption, vitamins and minerals support the chemical reactions in your body, and the antioxidants help protect your body against oxidative stress!

In other words, your blood sugar spikes when you streamline 29 grams of sugar into your system with a 12 oz soda. When you eat a piece of fruit, the fiber slows down the absorption of those sugars which prevents that very same spike in blood sugar. So while it’s true that there is sugar in both fruit and processed foods, they don’t get absorbed the same way in your body!

If you’re concerned about your health and want to reduce the amount of sugar you consume on a daily basis, feel free to chuck the added sugars out the window! Just please, don’t throw the baby out with the bathwater. Keep the fruit!

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