You’ve heard it time and time again, even from me. You need to be getting more fruit in your diet.
I like to recommend certain fruits over others. Things like raspberries, blueberries, Granny Smith apples (fruits low in sugar for the most part) etc. are preferred over other kinds of fruit (think water-melons, pineapples, and brown bananas).
But in reality almost all fruit is good for you, especially when consumed in moderation and as part of a healthy diet.
But there’s one class of fruits I really can’t recommend all that highly.
And those are dried fruits.
People who love G.O.R.P. are going to hate me.
I’m not saying dried fruit is horrible for you, no way!
The point I’m trying to make is if you have the choice between dried fruit or regular, whole fruit, always choose the latter.
Below I cover a few of the reasons you should avoid dehydrated/dried fruit.
4 Reasons To Avoid Dried Fruit
Dried fruit can contain harmful chemicals: Like most products on the shelves, dried fruit issometimes treated with chemicals to speed up the drying process. These aren’t the worst chemicals in the world, but they can have some adverse side effects.One of the chemicals added to fruit is sulfur dioxide.
Sulfur dioxide is a gut irritant. And yes, it can make things a little rough on your digestive system. If you want to avoid feeling gassy and bloated after indulging on dried fruit, make sure it doesn’t have added sulfur dioxide. There are “non-sulfured” varieties out there if you’re interested.
Another problem with this chemical is it can also exacerbate the condition of asthmatics, sometimes triggering severe asthma attacks. It can even lead to irritating skin rashes as well, which is obviously not what you want, especially for those of you who are trying to eat fruit to smooth out your complexion.And while not as common, some dried fruits have even been found to contain acrymalide which is a powerful neurotoxin. This chemical is not listed and is a byproduct of the production process.
They contain A LOT of sugar: Dried fruit is already highly concentrated in its sugar content as it is. But many companies end up adding more sugar to the fruit to give you that “sweet sugar high” you’re trying to get with less healthy options.Fruits like cranberries, blueberries among others will be soaked in sugar so they’re more palatable when you grab them by the handful.
It’s a cruel trick, but these companies know they have to hook you somehow, and deceiving you into thinking the dried fruit is healthy for you and making it taste better is one of those ways.To avoid this you need to look at labels and check for “no sugar added’ varieties. These are a much healthier and honestly more favorable option.
They’re not as filling: Here’s the thing about dried fruit. It’s missing one HUGE ingredient. Probably one of the most important things to include in your diet.Water.
The reason regular non-dried fruit is great in a pinch is because it’s naturally rich in stored water. This water will help hydrate you and can also keep you full, longer.
- They can lead to weight gain: This kind of goes along with point #2, but it’s important to think about. Even a handful extra of dried fruit a day can lead to serious weight gain. That’s a rotten deal I’m sure you’d agree.As Melodie Anne with HealthyEating writes:
” It takes an excess of 3,500 calories in your diet to gain 1 pound, explains MayoClinic.com. Consuming an extra 250 calories per day from dried fruit could contribute to as much as 2 pounds of weight gain in a one-month time frame.
Portion your serving of dried fruit before you start eating to minimize your caloric intake.
Single servings include eight apricot halves, three dates, 2 tablespoons of dried cranberries or blueberries, 1 1/2 dried figs or three prunes. Each of these servings provides about 60 calories.”
So, Is Dried Fruit Really That Bad?
In all reality no… but it can be.
That shouldn’t come as a shock, but some people want to feel justified in eating gobs of dried fruit even though the evidence shows it’s really not that great for you.
If you’re going to enjoy dried fruit do so sparingly.
On top of that, try to eat it with items high in fat. Nuts are a good option. Doing so will keep your insulin levels from ramping up (which can lead to weight gain).
At the end of the day don’t overdo it on dried fruit and you’ll be steering clear of the proverbial danger zone!