My Love-Hate relationship with Fruit

Ok, so it’s more of a Love relationship with fruit and a Hate relationship with not being able to eat as much as I want of it.  It’s summertime here in Canada, and that means a few great things: warm weather, longer days (it stays light out till after 10pm here in Alberta), camping, swimming, festivals, and locally grown, fresh produce!!!  All winter long we live off of fruits and vegetables that come from the US and Mexico.  Now, don’t get me wrong, their produce isn’t bad… it just isn’t as fresh and ripe because its travelled so far to get here.  The apples are smaller, and not as crisp and juicy, the peppers aren’t bright and beautiful and the tomatoes, well… lets just say they leave alot to be desired.  But in the summertime, we get the good stuff!!!  The Farmer’s markets errupt with gorgeous greens, bright reds and luscious yellows.  I just want to buy (AND EAT) it all 🙂  Thats the LOVE part!

Now here comes the HATE 😦  Despite the healthy benefits of fruit, as yummy and tempting as they are, they hide a little secret that puts a stop to my indulging: SUGAR.  Yes, the enemy of PCOS, sugar, and fruit is chalked full of it.  I know, I know, you’re saying “Jenn, its natural sugar, so it should be good for you, right”?.  Sadly, even natural sugar is still just sugar.  Your body has no way of knowing where the sugar came from, it just knows that it’s there and responds the same way to the sugar in fruit as it does to the sugar in a piece of cake.  BOO 😦

Here is the compromise (because isn’t compromise the key to every healthy relationship?!).  Fruit is an essential part of a healthy, balanced diet.  There are far too many vitamines, minerals and essential nutrients in fruit to give them up completely, so instead you just need to make some smart choices.  Like everything else, balance is the key.  I use the glycemic index to help me find the right portion sizes for the fruit I enjoy and keep me on track.  Apples, for example have a lower GI (scoring around a 38) and a portion size is your average medium sized apple.  Watermelon, on the other hand, is high on the GI (scoring somewhere between 75-100 – EEK) so a portion of watermelon is quite small.  You balance your fruit consumption based on what else you are eating that day and try to fit in at least a few portions.  You may not have room for 3 high GI fruits all in one day (unless you are satisfied with just a little bite of each).  Balance out a high GI fruit, like mango, with a lower one like a pear.  Have your pear and some almonds for a mid morning snack and some bits of mango thrown into your greek yogurt as your afternoon snack!!!  As long as you stay balanced and watch your portion control, you can enjoy all the fresh summer produce, from strawberry season all the way to fall apples.

And while you’re at it, why not pick up a new fruit every once in awhile!  Try something you’ve never had before, like a dragon fruit or star fruit.  Alot of local producers are now growing these more exotic fruits to sell at Farmer’s markets and will even let you try some before you buy!!!  You may even find a new favorite.  Here is one of ours:

Dragon fruit!!!

 

What a surprise when you cut it open! Isn't it beautiful?

I just scoop out the flesh, cut into chunks and serve in its soft shell! Delicious 🙂

Isn’t Dragon fruit gorgeous? Hope you enjoy! Take care everyone 🙂

I’m Happy, I’m Healthy, I’m Fertile, ttfn, xo

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