Don’t Derail Your Diet With Dried Fruit

Recently my husband and I took a huge road trip and of course I forgot to pack our healthy snackie poo’s to bring along. We made a pit stop to fuel up, and I ran inside to hopefully grab an apple, orange or banana—–NO such thing. Hanging on a display clip and trying to taunt me were racks and racks of dried fruit bags. Did you know most dried fruits are double, and sometimes even triple the sugar content of fresh fruit? And sugar, in case you haven’t heard, is pretty much the devil.

dried fruit

dried fruit

Here are four facts you need to know about dried fruit and why you should just eat the fresh stuff instead:

1. The sugar in dried fruit is called fructose, and it can create all kinds of havoc with your health. Excess fructose gets quickly converted by the liver into VLDL, a form of cholesterol which leads to fat storage. It’s also the type of sugar that creates insulin resistance, heart disease, obesity, and more. So staying away from fructose is a great decision in keeping your body healthy and happy.

2. Dried fruit has tons more sugar than fresh fruit. We should limit our daily fruit intake to 30g of carbs [of sugar] per day, which is about one banana, one apple, or two cups of berries.  Compare this to the typical serving of dried fruit. One cup of fresh cranberries contains 4g of sugar and one cup of dried cranberries contains a whopping 70g. That’s a lot of whopping going on, and personally I’ll pass.

3. Your brain doesn’t’t know how to say no to dried fruit. Findings show that we eat more dried fruit because fructose doesn’t signal your brain you’re full.  It doesn’t suppress ghrelin or stimulate leptin after you eat (ghrelin makes you hungry and leptin stops hunger). Now you can see why you still feel hungry after inhaling a bag of trail mix. I would suggest the healthier thing to do is pack some fresh fruit to take with you during the day.  It hits the spot without overloading you with carbs.

4. Now this next sentence is going to make you scratch your head, so here goes. You’re better off eating candy than dried fruit, that is, if you’re looking at the sugar content. Okay, I’m NOT saying go eat a candy bar, but you should know that one bag of M&Ms or a Milky Way bar has 30g of sugar which is less than what’s in about a cup of dried papaya or figs.

Ok girlfriends, so you thought eating dried fruit was a healthier snack but to our surprise it’s not. So grab the apple, orange or whatever your fruit of choice is and keep it handy throughout the day. When you get a hunger pang, go the fresh route, not dried.  After all, we work way too hard keeping ourselves fit and healthy, so for me, I’ll go fresh.  Hope you will too!

Turn It On and Look Fab,

Juetta West

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