Skip to main content

Can You Eat Too Much Fruit? Dietitians Discuss the Downsides of Nature's Candy

We've all heard for decades how great fruit is for our health, with studies linking fruit consumption to everything from reduced risk of cardiovascular disease to lower BMI. On the MyPlate food guide—the easy-to-follow visual guidelines from the USDA designed to help people prepare nutritious, well-balanced meals—fruit occupies a sizable portion of the plate graphic. In fact, fruit comprises nearly a quarter of the plate alongside vegetables, with guidance suggesting you help yourself to a combination of fruits and vegetables capable of comprising half your plate. However, is it possible that someone might eat too much fruit? Is there even such a thing as eating too much fruit?

If you live with diabetes or are concerned about sweets in your diet, you may find yourself avoiding fruit due to its high sugar content. After all, there's a reason why it sometimes gets the nickname "nature's candy." Also, if more sugar equals more pounds and you're concerned about weight gain, you might wonder if you should limit the amount of fruit you eat daily to help manage your weight.

To better understand how much is too much of nature's candy, we tapped a few dietitians to answer this burning question: Can you really eat too much fruit? Keep reading to find out what these nutrition experts think about the prospect of eating too much fruit—and for more dietitian-approved healthy eating advice, be sure to also explore the Surprising Side Effects of Not Eating Fruit, Say Dietitians.

Some potential downsides of eating too much fruit

eating oatmeal with fruit, nuts, and seeds and coffee

Allow me to start by reiterating that fruit is an incredibly healthy food with tremendous benefits! However, overdoing it on any food comes with downsides—and fruit is no exception. Though apples, berries, citrus, and other fruits provide natural hydration and tons of important nutrients, if you eat so many of them that you exclude other food groups, you could land in trouble.

"Too much fruit can cause you to eat less of other food like healthy fats and proteins," explains Amanda Lane, MS, RDN, CDCES, founder of Healthful Lane Nutrition. Going without these critical nutrients could eventually lead to harmful deficiencies.

Believe it or not, reaching for too many fruits could backfire and counter your health and wellness efforts, if your primary aim is ultimately to lose weight.

"Eating too much fruit at one sitting may spike your blood sugar, leaving you with cravings," says Bonnie Newlin, MS, RD, CLT, of Crave Nourishment.

How eating too much fruit can impact certain health conditions

For people with prediabetes or diabetes, it's essential to keep an eye on carbs—which fruits contain in abundance. According to Erin Palinski-Wade, RD, CDCES, author of 2-Day Diabetes Diet, people with these conditions do need to exercise caution around these naturally sweet foods.

"Although eating a diet rich in whole produce has been shown to reduce the risk of developing type 2 diabetes, most fruit contains a source of carbohydrate—so balance is key," says Palinski-Wade. "Fruit portion size needs to be considered as well as what the fruit is paired with."

For fruit intake to folks with diabetes or prediabetes, Palinski-Wade recommends sticking to one serving of fruit per meal or snack, and to combine this with a source of protein, fiber, or fat.

Other health issues could also put the kibosh on eating extra helpings of fruit for breakfast, lunch, and dinner, especially for those with gastrointestinal problems.

"With GI conditions, high-fiber foods may be challenging to digest or cause GI discomfort such as gas and bloating," explains Palinski-Wade. "Because food tolerance with conditions such as IBS or IBD are highly individualized, it is best to work with a healthcare professional to determine what fruit is best tolerated and if any restrictions apply," she adds.

Do other health benefits outweigh concerns about sugar?

Woman eating bowl of fruit

OK, so fruit contains lots of sugar—but it's naturally occurring, not artificially added. Does that make a difference for health? According to Newlin, the answer is yes. (Woohoo!)

"The body responds differently to added sugars verses natural sugars," explains Newlin. "Natural sugars found in fruit are delivered into your bloodstream gradually due to the presence of nutrients like fiber and polyphenols. The body has to break down these nutrients, which means the sugar is absorbed into body more slowly, creating less of a blood sugar spike."

Palinski-Wade agrees that the vitamins, minerals, and fiber in fruit help balance out the potential drawback of its sugar content.

"The beneficial nutrients fruit contains outweigh the limited risk of consuming natural sugars, and should not be avoided," Palinski-Wade advises. "Research has shown that diets containing whole fruit can promote a variety of health benefits. Since most adults do not meet the daily recommendations for fruit and vegetable consumption, adding more fruit to the diet is beneficial for most people."

So, how much fruit can you eat in a day?

Clearly, fruit makes a healthy choice in meals and snacks—but turning into a total fruitarian isn't necessarily the goal.

"Four to five servings of fruits is an acceptable upper level," explains Lane.

Lane adds that though eating this much fruit is fine, you should also remember to always strive for moderation and variety on your plate.

"Make sure you are consuming adequate amounts of non-starchy vegetables, legumes, whole grains and plant or animal proteins [too], as part of a balanced diet," Lane advises.

The post Can You Eat Too Much Fruit? Dietitians Discuss the Downsides of Nature's Candy appeared first on Eat This Not That.


Eat This Not That

Popular posts from this blog

These 5 Grocery Items Are Cheaper Than Ever Right Now

The grocery industry has been facing major disruptions. The combined effects of the pandemic, climate change, and economic uncertainty over the past couple of years have culminated in a series of supply chain breakdowns. For the consumer, this means supply shortages , shipping delays , and temporary store closures are becoming more commonplace – and all of the added production cost to suppliers is driving up food prices . The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics' Consumer Price Index report for January 2022 was released on Feb. 9, and it tells the story of cost trends for every spending category over the past year. Now the numbers are in, and since January 2021, "food at home" spending has increased 7.4%. Consumers should use this number as a benchmark, Phil Lempert, the consumer behavior analyst and founder behind Supermarket Guru , told Eat This, Not That! "Anything that's substantially less [than the 7.4% increase] is a deal," said Lempert. "When you

lose weight No-exercise No-diet – super fast weight loss drink

To day in this post i will share with you A MAGICAL SLIMMING DRINK TO BURN FAT FAST .This Natural Drink to help SUPER FAST WEIGHT LOSS & also help to NO-EXERCISE NO-DIET WEIGHT LOSS FAST.

When Should I Take Creatine?

Creatine is probably the most well-researched supplement on the market today. Numerous studies have found positive adaptations in strength, power and muscle mass thanks to creatine supplementation—especially when it's combined with resistance training. Although the benefits of creatine are well-known to lifters, the best time to take it isn't common knowledge. Which leads us to some important questions:     Does an optimal time for consuming creatine exist?     If it does, should you take it before or after your workout? According to a new study published in the Journal of Exercise and Nutrition, the timing of creatine ingestion does indeed play a role in getting bigger and stronger. Creatine supplementation before resistance training increases muscular strength and lean muscle mass. Interestingly, taking creatine immediately after lifting weights results in greater muscle growth than taking it immediately before. However, in terms of strength gains, no difference betw