January 8, 2008

Fruit – Good or Bad?

Lance wrote a great column yesterday on Top 10 Better Health Resolutions. I am very pleased to say that I looked at the list and I am already very good about almost everything on it!

  1. I drink a ton of water (today it was 18 glasses, but that’s overkill; usually I’m more around 10-12)
  2. I lift weights/do resistance training daily. I’m working on increasing the amount of weight I lift and decreasing the reps, because I think that’s why I haven’t been as happy with the results as I should be. It’s definitely making me more sore, so hopefully that’s a good thing.
  3. Get 7-8 hours of sleep a night. I usually get about 7. Surprisingly, my problem nights are actually weekends. I stay out really late, but still find myself getting up by 9. Have to work on that…
  4. Eat less processed food: I barely eat any! I certainly don’t buy any, so it’s only if I’m out and I have to
  5. Eat 5 servings of veggies daily. Hmm… according to Daily Plate, I ate five yesterday, four on Sunday, six on Saturday… check!
  6. Eat more protein: I am always WAY over the RDA. I actually should probably make that eat less protein.
  7. Get a doctor’s physical: coming up in a month!
  8. More on this in a bit…
  9. Okay, maybe there are two I need to work on… but I stretch when the DVD tells me to! (Too bad not all my workouts follow the nice lady on the DVD)
  10. I don’t touch soda. Ever. Even with alcohol. I go with juice (yes, I know it’s not the 100% kind when you get it at a bar, but at least it’s not soda).

So… about number 8. This sparked some conversation between Lance and I (or at least some blog comments). I know the sugar in fruit is natural sugar, but it’s sugar nonetheless, so I try not to get a ton of it. However, Lance’s advice was not to limit fruits. This advice was supported by The Athlete’s Kitchen with Nancy Clark, MD, RD. Nancy had a lot of ideas for how to incorporate fruit into your diet, some of which I’m pleased to say I already follow.

Frozen bananas? I eat them instead of ice cream (though I should note that I peel the banana and wrap the whole thing in aluminum foil to freeze). I’m also all over the frozen fruit smoothies, especially when a scoop of protein powder is thrown in for good measure (Nancy supports this, saying that adding protein to a fruit will fill you up better). I tend to eat an apple, banana, or pear every morning as my mid-morning snack, but perhaps I should add some peanut butter or cheese to that?

I went looking for articles that would counter this advice to eat more fruits (I was thinking of Sugarbusters and other low-sugar plans). However, most of them just say to choose fruits that aren’t ridiculously high in sugar, like pineapple and watermelon. I guess it was an oops that I ate a cup of raw pineapple tonight! But at least that was as hors d’oeuvres at a cocktail party where I passed up all the fried and processed foods…

Anyway, I guess I’m convinced that I can put more fruit into my diet. It’s tricky with my calorie goals – I don’t really have many empty calories to substitute – but I’m going to make an effort. What about you? How much fruit do you eat? Do share some favorites 🙂


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