Benefits of fruit:
- Good source of non-grain carbs, simple sugars (for post-workout food), fiber (keeps you fuller for longer), and vitamins.
- Low in calories and sweet — great replacement for sugary desserts and snacks
- *If you’re trying to lean out or lose body fat, be careful not to eat too much fruit. (Limit your fruit intake to 2-3 times day.)
It’s best to eat fresh, whole fruit (organic if possible). Be careful of some fruit products or pre-made fruit meals. Products like canned fruit, fruit cocktail, dried fruit, smoothies, jams, fruit yogurts, etc. often have a lot of sugar and preservatives added to them.
Tips for buying/storing fruit:
- Buy fruit in season; they’ll be cheaper
- If there’s a particular fruit you like, buy it when it’s in season and freeze it.
- Similarly, if there’s a great sale on fruit, you can buy a lot of it and then freeze it.
- How to freeze fruits.
Getting more fruit in your diet:
- Replace typical grain-carbs (bread, rice, pasta, etc.) with fruit in your meals instead.
- Make a smoothie! Blend almond/soy/skim milk, fresh fruit, and ice to create a clean and great tasting smoothie. No need to add more sugar. Add other ingredients such as non-fat greek yogurt (thickener and protein source), cinnamon, or vanilla to add flavor and texture (Try NY Time’s Banana Almond Smoothie—one of my favorites).
- Replace snacks and juices with a piece of whole fruit instead.
- Fruit acts as a great substitute for sugary ingredients:
- Instead of eating fruit-flavored yogurts, add pureed fruit to non-fat greek yogurt.
- Replace syrup with sliced fruit on your pancakes/waffles. (Google some recipes for clean-eating recipes for pancakes. There’s tons!)
- Mix fruit into your meals/recipes. You can put fruit in sandwiches, salads, oatmeal, cereal, etc. Examples:
- Make a peanut butter (natural PB) and fruit sandwich on whole wheat bread.
- Add bananas to your cold cereal.
- Add sliced grapes to a chicken sandwich for extra dimension and great taste (if it sounds strange, don’t knock it till you try it!)
- Add fruit to your protein shake (try MC Barao’s Banana Boat Protein Shake!)
Check out Eatmoreof for more tips on getting healthy foods into your diet!