Fruit overload and your tummy; too much of a good thing!

Strawberries

Ahhh summer! It’s finally here and what it brings are fresh fruits and veggies, what we need and crave for good health, and for good reason! However, there is always too much of a good thing…and while fruit provides a multitude of vitamins such as C, magnesium, folate, potassium, and fibre for great digestive health, we can’t forget that fruit itself, is well, sugar! Nature’s dessert :)


Strawberries

The good ol’ Canada Food Guide insists that we need 5 servings of fruit and veggies, but in the summer I do notice that we tend to all eat closer to 5 servings of fruit with 1 – 2 veggies, and we end up with symptoms of fruit overload! Not sure what those symptoms might be?

Physical Symptoms of Fruit Overload

  • Diarrhea
  • Bloating
  • Canker sores
  • Peeling skin at the fingernails
  • Sore tongue
  • Acid reflux
  • Eczema
  • Rashes
  • Bad breath
  • Imbalanced intestinal bacteria contributing to vaginal yeast infections (chronic or acute)
  • Swelling of the lower legs or the body in general
  • Sugar cravings

Traditional Chinese Medicine attributes the above physical symptoms with internal dampness, meaning that these raw, wet, sugar-​laden foods create a heaviness in the body that with the heat of summer can lead to some of the physical symptoms or conditions I listed above.

Making the most of fresh fruit this summer

A few simple tips to keep your body enjoying the fruit and not wanting to run away from it!

  1. Stick to 3 servings of fresh fruit maximum.
  2. When choosing fruit, try to keep in mind that each fruit has its own properties that may be better or worse for your body. Lemons in lemonade, while very refreshing, are very acidic, and watermelon, while also full of water and hydrating, has the highest impact on raising our blood sugar (it is the highest value on the glycemic index, the rating system for food and the ability to raise our blood sugar). Choosing a balanced perspective of which fruit does what might help to balance out what you are eating. Not sure which fruit is most beneficial for you personally?
  3. Pair your fruit with foods that are warming foods, like ginger and cinnamon, that help to “heat” the body up from the inside out, and will counterbalance the cool, damp aspects of the fruit you are eating.
  4. Be sure to continue to eat your good fats, proteins, and veggies. Sometimes too many raw foods in the summer are hard for some tummies to digest. Asparagus is a fabulous vegetable that can be grilled alongside your meals this season as an example that will pair well with your choice of fruit as dessert.
  5. Stick local and organic as much as possible. Supporting our local economy is important, and pesticide-​free makes sure you are not ingesting otherwise excellent fruit that could be causing many negative effects in your body. Click on this resource for more information regarding pesticides and food.

Permanent Fruit Troubles?

There are some lucky people that have a condition known as fructose intolerance, who cannot digest many fruit because it contains a lot of the sugar fructose, which they cannot break down. If you think you might be that person, you can be tested!

Thoughts? Think I’m a fruit-​hater? I’d love to hear your comments below :)

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