I want to preface this post by saying in no way am I vilifying fruit. It is a one-ingredient food, packed with antioxidants, vitamins, minerals and fiber, nutrition we need for good health. However I do believe as a society, we are over consuming fruit on a daily basis and all year long. This wasn’t nature’s intention.
Looking at it from a primal point of view, fruit was mostly eaten when in season: primarily during the spring and summer months. Not only was this the only option our ancestors had, but there was also a biological incentive.
Fructose (the sugar found specifically in fruit) is metabolized differently than other sugars. Whereas glucose (sugar in its simplest form) is digested, absorbed and transported to the liver to be released into the blood stream (after which our cells and muscle tissue use it for energy), only our liver cells can break down fructose, increasing the likelihood that the sugar will be converted to triglycerides (i.e. fat) and stored in our adipose tissue (i.e. fat cells). Therefore, fruit was eaten in the warmer months to encourage fat storage for the sparse season ahead.
Furthermore, studies have shown that dietary fructose both reduces the amount of leptin circulating after a meal (our satiety hormone), and doesn’t suppress ghrelin (our hunger hormone) in the same way as glucose. It’s why food companies put high fructose corn syrup into their products! They know you can keep eating these foods and not feel full.
If weight/fat loss is a part of your health goals, this information is important to keep in mind. Even if it’s not, and you are struggling with constant hunger and cravings, you might want to take note. Personally, I have realized how much fruit (especially in the morning) negatively impacts my blood sugar for the rest of the day (increasing cravings and hunger). Therefore, I try to stick to 1-2 servings of fruit in a day.
This blood sugar balancing fruitless green smoothie focuses on healthy fat, protein, and leafy greens, setting you (and your energy) up for success! And check out these ingredients that can also make your smoothie way healthier.
Sara’s Favorite Fruitless Green Smoothie
- High-speed Blender
- 1-2 cups coconut water or unsweetened almond milk (depending on desired consistency)
- 2 handfuls of leafy greens (spinach, kale, romaine etc)
- 1/2 cup frozen zucchini or cauliflower rice
- 1/2 cup frozen nut milk cubes or ice
- 1/2 teaspoon spirulina (optional)
- 1 tablespoon coconut butter or nut butter of choice
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1 scoop vanilla protein powder
- Place all ingredients in a high-speed blender until smooth.