The saying “An apple a day keeps the doctor away” is probably an overstatement, but it’s not something to completely disregard either. Fruits are an integral part of a healthy diet. Hence it’s obvious that one should have enough fruits to check all the boxes of a healthy diet.
But, it’s not that simple. Since there’s a large difference in opinion about deciding how much fruit is too much fruit, and in gauging the physical effect that fruits put on us, the adage stands at the face of doubt. Fun fact?
You’re probably not having enough fruits. 8 of 10 individuals around the world are not having enough. And put simply, it’s making you miss out on a lot of benefits that could make a huge difference.
Let’s look at 4 benefits that eating the right amount of fruits can give you. (Pssst… go grab a fruit before you dive into this post!)
A lot of vitamins and minerals
Are you taking vitamin pills and mineral supplements regularly? Maybe it’s because your diet contains less fruit than needed. Potassium, folate and vitamin C are food components that people are often deficient in. Fruits are loaded in these components! Bananas have a lot of potassium, and citrus fruits are rich in vitamin C. Including a variety of fruits in your diet is enough to ensure that you get your daily recommended dose of them.
As a bonus, they are also rich in antioxidants. Antioxidants are substances that prevent oxidation inside the body, by oxygen atoms which can potentially char your insides, so to speak.
I bet you bit into your fruit after listening to that.
Increase in water intake
Fruits contain a lot of water. Bit into a watermelon and savoured the juicy goodness that it had to offer? Well, that’s the water doing the talking.
While many of us are struggling to reach the ‘1-gallon daily’ mark as advised by certain experts, this simple practice of having more fruits is a step in the right direction. What’s more, since more intake of water can help you lose weight, more fruits is one of the reasons why you’ll feel fuller, because you have taken in more water.
“But fruit juice in a bottle also contains water. What’s the deal with whole fruits?”
Well, fruits contain much less calories than most of those drinks which are loaded with sugar. You can consume a lot of that without feeling satiated. So it kinda has the opposite effect. Plus the juices will contain additional preservatives that may not be really good for you. Fresh fruits are devoid of that, and so are significantly safer. There’s another reason too, read on to find out.
Remember the ‘other reason’? Well, this is it.
Whole fruits have much more fibre than many other staples of your diet. That’s because they are primarily made of plant fibres like cellulose which are indigestible by humans. It does not harm the body. It is treated as filler, like other food components, but is simply excreted instead of being digested. This property of fruits is one of the reasons why fruits help you feel full. Basically, it will satiate you, without adding significantly to the calories count. It helps in more efficient elimination of wastes too.
Okay, random fact, but do you know how lovely frozen fruit tastes? I love frozen mangoes!
Reduced Risk of Many Diseases
Maybe the apple alone doesn’t make the cut, but a variety of fruits can help to increase your resistance to disease. A serving of fruit each day can reduce your risk of heart disease by about 7%. Citrus fruits prevent scurvy and kidney stones. Grapes and apples are known to help with diabetes.
Well, maybe consuming a ton of them won’t cure the disease but it’ll definitely be a help in preventing it.
For the ones who are raising eyebrows at the very mention of fruits with diabetes, since sugar is present in fruits as well, there is something that science has to say. First, when sugar is eaten in the form of a whole fruit, there is not that much of damaging effects done. Second, the fibre in fruit has a twofold purpose – it slows down digestion helping in better absorption of sugar, and the fibre is seen to have increased insulin resistance in the body. Third, there are polyphenols in fruit that help in better blood sugar control. The only thing to be noted is that diabetics probably have to exercise more control on their choice of fruit.
Eating more fruits comes with a host of benefits, some of which I have discussed above. But not all people are suited to have fruits – there are people who are on a ketogenic diet, or those with an intolerance condition, who are medically forbidden to have fruit. This is an exception condition. Other than that, fruits are the magic capsules of Nature which come with benefits galore.
Which fruit are you going to have next?