Fructose is a natural sugar found in fruit but it has been somewhat demonised of late, bananas in particular….
The main reason for this is that it has been used in the form of High Fructose Corn Syrup in carbonated beverages and as the consumption of these has increased in western society, so has obesity.
It has also been used more and more as a sweetener in processed foods.
Herein lays the issue; the quantity consumed. As with any food, if you have too much, it will lead to weight gain and an increased risk to your health. And what do we know about sweet, processed foods…? They are extremely easy to over eat.
But evidence has actually shown that when consumed in moderation, fructose has no adverse effects on weight or health. In fact anything below 100g a day ‘does not influence body weight’ according to a 2010 review by Salwa.
Fundamentally, the harmful effects of fructose lay with an excess of calories and added sugars. It does not apply to the natural sugars found in fruits and vegetables; it is fact very hard to over consume fructose in this form as the dietary fibre that comes with it is very filling. Demonising fructose in this way could prevent you from acquiring essential nutrients.
The take home – don’t over complicate the simple fact that eating too many processed foods is not a good idea. Eat plenty of fruit and veg safe in the knowledge that it is good for you!! And remember, no single food will make you unhealthy when consumed in moderation and as part of a balanced diet.
This was brought to you by Rebecca Flannery, Nutrition Coach at Transformational Nutrition.