Adopting a keto lifestyle can be a game-changer for those who have struggled with their weight and health. Ketosis has so many benefits, you may be wondering why you never tried it before.
We agree: keto is the way to go. It’s worked for us and for our thousands of satisfied members who love how they feel, how they look –– and what they eat.
But while controlling carbs can seem easy when it comes to processed or high-carb foods, there’s one group that often leaves people stumped: fruit.
Seriously. What could possibly be so bad about fruit?
As a child, your parents probably pushed fruit on you, perhaps daily. (If they were like mine, hourly!) More often than not, fruit was offered as a better choice than cookies, candy or soda. “If you’re hungry, eat an apple. It’s good for you.”
And of course, an apple a day — according to anyone’s grandmother— keeps the doctor away.
All your life, you’ve heard fruit is one of the healthiest food groups you can eat. Whole fruit is natural. It’s not processed, and generally sugar isn’t added to it. So what’s the problem?
It may be fruit’s all-natural, “wholesome” reputation that makes keto a little confusing for many newcomers. It just seems so weird that you can’t eat it when it’s supposed to be one of the most innocent foods on earth.
We’re about to uncover why fruit can undermine your keto efforts –– if you do it wrong. But, surprise: we’ll also show you how to eat fruit on keto in a controlled way if you’re really missing it. Best of all, you’ll feel happy, satisfied and get a burst of energy just when you need it.
Here’s the deal with fruit, keto...and how to satisfy that itch while staying in control.
####<p style="color: rgba(20, 117, 135, 1)">Can You Eat Fruit on Keto?</p>
The quick-and-dirty answer: yes, you can eat fruit on keto, but only if it’s one of these. Here are the best 5 fruits to eat on a keto diet:
<li>Lime juice, limited</li>
We know. That’s not really what you wanted to hear. When people hear the word “fruit,” what comes to mind for most of us is more along the lines of apples, watermelon, bananas, oranges...the sweet stuff.
Unfortunately, most of the time, eating that sweet stuff in even standard servings may be enough to kick you right out of ketosis. Because of this, apples and grapes are not good choices to eat on keto— and it may be better to treat them more like candy.
####<p style="color: rgba(20, 117, 135, 1)">How Fruit Affects Weight Loss on Keto</p>
Keto can take many forms, but pretty much all of them have one thing in common: carbs are very controlled.
By contrast, some popular eating plans include plenty of carbohydrates. Often, these will be calorie-restricted, and/or will incorporate intensive, pro-level exercise. Both of these extremes, unfortunately, have a high rate of failure. Being hungry all the time and overexerting yourself are not sustainable - and they’re not supposed to be. Your body wants fuel!
In fact, your body loves fuel so much that it will encourage you to seek out the most fuel for the least amount of effort. And the nutrients that are the quickest to digest and easiest to store are –– you guessed it –– carbohydrates.
And that should be good. Shouldn’t it?
Actually, for many thousands of years of human existence, it was. But the reason was that those carbs were controlled.
Until recently in human history, the most concentrated natural, unprocessed source of carbs we had was fruit. And generally, we only ate that fruit in season. Later on, preservation methods such as drying became available, but these were unreliable and were still limited to what hadn’t been eaten at harvest time. Quantities were limited –– when it was gone, it was gone!
So humans ate a naturally low-carb diet. In fact, they were probably frequently in ketosis. (1) This is a state in which the body burns fat for fuel instead of carbs/sugar/glucose. The process produces ketones in the urine, hence the name. But the important part is: when you limit your carbs your body burns the fat you have instead. That’s what ketosis does, and did for our slim, active ancestors.
This, in addition to a natural appetite suppressant effect from protein and fats, is why being in ketosis works so well. You feel full, and you’re burning fat. And it’s not with a pill or some incredibly restrictive regimen; in fact, it’s quite natural.
The problem is that we no longer are naturally restricted on how much fruit we can eat. Our ancestors went out of ketosis when they got a hold of a bunch of crabapples or a few handfuls of berries, and they probably had a nice long nap afterward as their blood sugar rose, then fell quickly. But the next day it was business as usual: a very low-carb diet, and a few days later, ketosis.
In the modern world, you probably have access to so much higher-carb food (like fruit) that you could be keeping yourself permanently out of ketosis. Or you may crave fruit and indulge every couple of days. What happens is that you’re on a sort of “roller coaster.” You eat carbs, your body releases an excess of insulin to clean up the sugars, and in response, your blood sugar drops much lower than it should go. That’s all ends up as bad news for your energy levels and for your keto plan.
Okay, we hear you: get to the important part! Does adopting a keto lifestyle mean you can never eat fruit again? Indeed, you may be wondering how you can be healthy without fruit. Which brings us to…
####<p style="color: rgba(20, 117, 135, 1)">But Aren’t Fruits Full of Nutrients?</p>
Sure they are!
You didn’t think it would be that simple, did you? It is. Yes, many fruits have a whole lot of healthy elements to them. For example, they’re full of antioxidants (2) (particularly darker fruits, like berries), which fight free radicals and may prevent cancer.
Whole fruit may also contain quite a bit of fiber, depending upon the actual fruit. Fiber has been linked to a feeling of fullness (3) and with overall good health.
Fruit is also often high in water, so it can help keep you from becoming dehydrated.
But the best part about fruit, particularly as pertains to plans like the 14-Day Diet, (4) is that it gives you FAST energy.
So, to recap: Fruits are healthy. Ketosis is healthy, and helps you control your appetite. Eating fruit would appear to knock you out of ketosis. Confused yet? Don’t be! We’re about to let you in on a secret that may change the way you eat –– and how great you feel - forever!
####<p style="color: rgba(20, 117, 135, 1)">So What’s the Answer?</p>
Fruit is healthy, overall –– at least from a nutrient perspective. Ketosis is healthy, and it helps you control your appetite and eat more bulk without gaining weight. So what’s the answer?
The newest, most scientific and most groundbreaking health plans say: both!
If fat is your unleaded gas, carbohydrates are your rocket fuel. Carbs give you quick, immediate energy to kill that workout or power through a stressful work afternoon. On the downside, because they quickly raise blood sugar, the drop that follows can leave you sluggish and craving even more carbs.
Plans like the 14-Day Diet address both sides of this coin (which is one of the reasons they’re so cool!). While no one plan will work for everyone, plans like the 14-Day Diet incorporate fruit every once in a while (intermittently), to power you up briefly, rev your metabolism, and rebalance hormones to get you burning, burning, burning once again.
It may seem counterintuitive, but while being in ketosis can –– and will –– help balance your hormones, control your appetite, and burn stored fat, knocking yourself out of ketosis intermittently can “reset” your body and get things moving again.
Here’s why intermittent carbing-up can be an incredibly healthy part of your keto plan:
It supplies your body with some micronutrients that may be missing, such as antioxidants and fiber (particularly if you’re not eating enough low-carb veggies).
It rebalances hormones, reducing hormones such as cortisol, a stress hormone, and supporting your weight loss-boosting chemistry.
It delivers the psychological element of not being so restricted. The psychological element is HUGE when it comes to dieting. Don’t discount it –– feed it!
Ketosis may produce sluggishness for some people. Don’t get us wrong; most individuals on keto will experience a rebound of amazing energy after 3-7 days. However, we’ve found that many clients continue to have days where they just don’t have as much “pep.” One carb-up/”cheat” day gives that lift and helps you get back on track.
####<p style="color: rgba(20, 117, 135, 1)">Save Fruit for Your Cheat Day</p>
But here’s the important part: when it comes to fruit, it’s a cheat day. It’s not cheating every day.
The key to adding fruit to your keto plan is that it will wake up and shake up your body. That means your body takes it as something of a “surprise,” jolting you into high gear and giving you a great restart.
Individuals vary on how often they can incorporate a cheat day that includes fruit. You should also limit the total amount of fruit you eat, even on your cheat day.
We have clients who are able to incorporate a cheat day every week. Others do well with every two weeks. And then some do best having their fruit/carb day every two weeks for the first two months or so, then are able to move to once per week.
When carbing up with your intermittent cheat day, keep the following in mind:
Keep track of how you feel physically. If you love your big bowl of fruit on your carb-up day but find you’re exhausted 45-90 minutes later, you’re experiencing a sugar crash. In response to the amount of fructose/fruit sugar you’re eating, your body has pumped out way too much insulin. This has rounded up the sugar in your system to the point of having no energy left.
The solution: dial it back. Try a smaller serving on your next cheat day. Everyone is different. We know you know this - but it bears repeating. You may need to experiment with carbing up. Or start with a tried-and-true plan like the 14-Day Diet, which has worked for thousands of people so far. It can be a great jumping-off point to teach you exactly how and when to carb up, and what fruits to eat on your carb-up/cheat day.
Go for whole fruits, especially in the beginning. Juice has a higher concentration of sugars, as it has been stripped of the fruit’s fiber. Dried fruits like raisins, plums or dried cranberries are, likewise, chock full of sugar per serving simply because they’ve been dehydrated. They may be too much for your system, especially after one to two weeks of being in ketosis. Start with the most low-carb fruits you can find.
Start slowly! You have plenty of time –– all your life, in fact! –– to work out the perfect system for you. But you’ll want to increase your odds of success from the very beginning by choosing fruits with the least amount of carbohydrates. Fruit that is lowest in carbs includes raspberries, strawberries and blackberries, so these are your best bet for your first cheat day. The next time, kick things up a notch with an apple or a pear. Work your way up to see how your body responds. DON’T feel deprived!
Although plans like the 14-Day Diet are built on solid science and biochemistry, you can’t discount the psychological element. It is HUGE when it comes to weight loss. (In fact, it’s key to keto as well –– you can eat more, feel fuller, and eat food that tastes and feels delicious, so you’re happier overall.) If you’re craving that fruit, don’t tell yourself, “I can’t have it.” Instead say: “That sounds SO GOOD, and I can’t WAIT to have it on Saturday in my fresh compote. Mmmm!”
####<p style="color: rgba(20, 117, 135, 1)">A Balancing Act That Works</p>
Yes, you can combine fruit with a keto plan. You just have to know how and when to add it in. Most importantly, you need to know why, so you have the knowledge to get your body’s biochemistry working for you, not against you.
When you follow your body’s own rules and also keep yourself psychologically satisfied, you have the recipe for success you’ve been looking for.
<p style="color: rgba(20, 117, 135, 1)">Resources</p>
<font size="1">1 https://www.webmd.com/diabetes/type-1-diabetes-guide/what-is-ketosis