Thursday, July 21, 2011

Fertility and the Sugar in Fruits

In this blog post, I answer more of your questions, this time, on fruits and fertility.

QUESTION: I love orange juice. Is it OK to drink on a fertility diet?

ANSWER: Not really. The issue with fruit juice is that even when it’s pure and has no additives or preservatrives, the concentration of sugar in it is too high to consume (for our blood sugar levels).  In general, sugar negatively affects blood sugar levels, leading to hormonal imbalance, which we don't want while TTC. It’s also known to compromise our immune systems. Natural sugar, like that found in fruits, is OK, but in moderation. The issue with fruit juices, is, of course, that the amount of sugar found in juice is concentrated and too much.

If you want to drink pure, organic fruit juice, I recommend watering it way down (at least 50% water) and drinking only small amounts at a time. You’ll likely find it isn’t worth it. Much, much better to skip the juice and eat whole fruits instead.

QUESTION: What about dried fruit?

ANSWER: Dried fruit is a natural form of sugar (if processed simply, without preservatives or additives), which is great. However, the sugar in dried fruit is also very concentrated, so you really need to watch how much you’re eating and moderate. I would not eat more than 3 or 4 dried fruits a day, which is not much (meaning, 3 or 4 dried apricots, apples, peaches…). A handful of raisins is OK. Better to eat fresh fruit, though, whenever you have the choice.

QUESTION: Are sweet potatoes on the fertility diet?

ANSWER: Yes, absolutely. They tend to have a lot of sugar, so just be careful not to eat too many of them in one sitting (most people don’t). Avoid fried versions of these when eating out, though, as they are often prepared in oil heavy with trans fat (which is very bad for the health). Baked, pure and simple, is best.

All the best to you!

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