Fruit and Weight Loss? How much should you eat?

Weight loss meal plan

Should I eat fruit? How much fruit is OK to eat? How much is too much? Will the sugar in fruit make me gain weight?

These are questions I get asked every day, so I thought that I would write a blog post to clear this confusion - based on science of course.

The main reason for this confusion is because fruit is relatively high in sugar compared to other whole foods, so I will break this down for you.

“Sugar” is bad, but the context is important...

Weight loss specialist Perth

We all know that added sugar is harmful to our health, and there is a lot of evidence to support this. By added sugar I'm talking about table sugar (sucrose) and high fructose corn syrup, both of which are half glucose and half fructose.

When fructose is consumed in large amounts (as it does in these added sugars), this is when it is harmful to us as it causes extremely negative metabolic effects and promotes the build up of fat around our liver and organs.

But there is only a VERY SMALL AMOUNT of fructose found in whole fruits compared to sucrose and high-fructose corn syrup. It is difficult to overeat on fructose by eating whole fruits. Also, the sugar in fruit is digested slowly, as opposed to added sugars where they are quickly digested which brings me to my next point…

Whole fruit contains important fiber, water, vitamins, minerals and antioxidants

Weight loss specialist Perth

Whole fruits are amazing for our health as they contain lots of beneficial nutrients. They should definitely be consumed (in moderation) as part of a healthy lifestyle.

But I'm not going to bore you and talk about the benefits of these nutrients here, you can find hundreds of articles on google for this...

What I want you to understand is that most fruits take a while to eat and digest, meaning that the fructose contained without the fruit hits the liver slowly. This is mainly due to their high fiber content.

When fructose hits your liver quickly and in large amounts (like it does with sugary sodas and candy bars) then that can have disastrous consequences… but when it hits your liver slowly and in small amounts (from whole fruit) your body can easily take care of the fructose.

If you want to maximize the health effects of fruit, focus on the fruit with the greatest amount of fiber, vitamins and minerals compared to the sugar and calorie content. Refer to the image below to compare different fruits. Berries are the best!

Nutritionist Perth


Fruit isn’t as healthy if it is juiced or dried

Even though whole fruits are very healthy for most people, the same can not be said for fruit juices and dried fruit.

Many of the fruit juices on the market aren’t even “real” fruit. You can pretty much call them sugar water! They are often made from water, some sort of concentrate and a whole lot of added sugar.

Even if you do find a juice that is 100% real fruit, it’s probably still not a great idea to consume often.

The amount of sugar in juice can be the same as a soft drink.

Weight loss meal plan

This is because many serves of fruit go into one juice and the fiber has been taken out. What does this mean? The liquid (containing a large amount of sugar) is digested fast and consequently is sent to your liver fast. And when this amount of sugar is sent to the liver, it is likely to be turned to fat as it cannot metabolise this large amount of fructose at once.

Also, consuming liquid calories has very little affect on satiety (keeping you full) so you end up eating far more than you would if you ate the fruit whole.

Think of juice as an occasional option, but in general, always opt for whole fruits.

Weight loss meal plan

Dried fruits (like raisins) can be problematic too. They are very high in sugar and it is easy to consume large amounts.

Weight loss Nutritionist Perth

What about when it comes to weight loss?

Fruit should be enjoyed as part of a healthy diet by everyone. It is when we get down to the nitty gritty of weight loss that we need to look at it a bit more closely. Also, like any food, of course there is a limit to how much you can eat.  

Weight loss Nutritionist Sydney

If you are substituting fruit for other sweet snacks (like chocolate, lollies, cake or biscuits) then of course it is an incredible swap. These "discretionary" foods come with a huge amount of calories and sugar and lack any vitamins and minerals. By eating fruit instead you are saving yourself excess calories and providing your body with plenty of vitamins, minerals and fiber to keep you full and as a result eat less. These are amazing benefits and will help you drop weight easily.

It is only when you already have an other wise healthy, wholefood based diet yet you still struggle with your weight, that you may want to start to limit your fruit intake.

Low carbohydrate diets work AMAZINGLY for lots of us. We can all tolerate different amounts of carbs - and fruit is high in carbs. If you can eat carbs and stay slim and happy then great! You are one of the lucky ones...

However, if lowering your carb intake helps you lose weight then fruit restriction may be important and will definitely amplify the process. I personally stick to a low carb lifestyle and so limit my fruit intake to around 1/2 cup to 1 cup of berries (and lots of veggies) which works best for me. Because I specialise in weight loss and recommend low carb diets to many of my clients, I also recommend berries as the main fruit of choice, with other whole fruits included for occasional consumption.

 

So, what do I recommend and how much should you eat?

Weight loss nutritionist Cottesloe

At the end of the day, fruits are “real” foods. They are highly nutritious and so fulfilling that eating them can help you feel more satisfied with less food.

If you eat lots of sugary foods, ditch them and replace it with whole fruits. Chances are you will drop weight and your health will improve in numerous ways.

If you can tolerate fruit and you’re not on a low-carb diet then go ahead and eat fruit as part of a healthy, real food based diet that includes lots of plant-based foods. If you feel that you can maintain or lose weight quite easily and fruit doesn't effect this, then I recommend 2 serves of (whole) fruit per day.

If you struggle to lose weight and need an extra "push" then reducing your fruit intake can be very beneficial (after you have already cut out all other sugars first and reduced your carbohydrate intake). Cutting out (or down on) fruit doesn't mean you can't reap the benefits of all of the vitamins and minerals. You can still receive more than enough by eating plenty of vegetables. I recommend only eating berries and just sticking to one serving per day (around 1 cup max), as I mentioned above.

Nutritionist Perth

I hope this cleared the confusion for you!

Want to see how fruit fits in perfectly to a perfectly balanced wholefoods diet? My 3 Week Body Reset Plan shows you exactly how.

Bec xx

 

My Top 5 Go-To Takeaway Options

Low carb recipes

Do you feel time poor? I think all of us are! Even though home-cooked meals can be quick and easy, sometimes it’s totally necessary (and fun) to grab takeaway. It also means that there are no dishes – win-win.

I always leave two spaces for “free meals” when I construct personalised meal plans for my clients. These are meals where I leave it up to the client to go out for dinner or grab a takeaway.

These "free meals" are also incorporated into my own diet and the 3 Week Body Reset Plan that so many of you are on! So, I thought I would write a quick blog for you all to share my top 5 go-to's to help you stay on track with your health at these times.

Eat healthy 80-90% of the time? Then let yourself indulge. But, if you're serious about losing weight, or if you have gut problems including food sensitivities, you do want to be that little bit more savvy and always go for the healthiest option.

 

1. Grill'd Burgers

Low carb recipes

Firstly I just want to say… if you’re living a healthy lifestyle, it should be one that focuses around home-cooked meals about 80% of the time. Then, the other 20% doesn't have to be so regimented and strict! We need to live an enjoyable life with variety. SO, when you want a burger… get a burger! There’s no need to really get into the nitty-gritty (unless you have specific dietary requirements - like me). There’s nothing wrong with getting a regular, genuine, good old burger.

My top picks:

The salads are all great. Just ask for the dressing on the side, otherwise too much can be used and the calorie content would easily surge up.

ANY of the burgers. The bun just really depends on your dietary pattern! So, don’t bother getting a low carb/paleo bun if you’re not following a low carb lifestyle. If you seem to manage your weight well with a diet that includes carbohydrates, go for the normal bread! And, if you’re gluten free but don’t follow a low carb diet, choose the gluten-free bun. Calorie wise… all of the buns are much/much.

Low carb recipes

What do I get?

The green dream salad with dressing on the side.

OR

The simply grilled or Simon says on the paleo/low carb bun. 

Extra tips to still make the healthiest choice and not go totally overboard:

  • Avoid getting chips or share with a friend

  • Ask for dressing on the side with your salad

  • If you’re getting a burger that already has mayo in it, probably go easy on the cheese (and visa versa). Choose one or the other

  • If you’re trying to limit sugar, especially if you’re on a weight loss diet, ask for the relish to be left out.

 

2. Peko Peko (Doubleview and Attadale)

Low carb recipes

Honestly, everything here is a dream. Whether you're vegan, vegetarian, gluten-free, low carb or just generally health conscious, all of the meals here are amazing.

It’s so healthy that it doesn’t need to even really count as those
“once or twice a week free meals”.

Perfect for a super healthy and tasty light lunch or a more substantial, comforting meal at night.

What do I get?

I LOVE the rice-paper rolls at lunchtime. I always get one chicken rice paper roll and one tofu. On days I’m extra hungry ill get 3 (one chicken and 2 tofu). I always get the miso and ginger sauce too to go with them - obsessed.

For dinner, I order a noodle meal with chicken and the red curry sauce. However - I ask for no noodles and extra vegetables. Honestly the best meal ever, it has so many fresh greens and the sauce is extremely tasty.

 

3. The Boatshed (Cottesloe)

Low carb recipes

This supermarket has everything. From fresh produce to takeaway meals. It’s great if you don’t know what cuisine you feel like as there’s pretty much everything here!

From salads to soups, to curries, to sushi, to hot meals, it has you covered.

What do I get?

I love getting a large salad from the deli. I always get a combo of three or four of them - and they change daily! But I always opt for ones that suit my dietary requirements (gluten free and low carb). So, I go for ones that don’t have grains!

I also love the hot roast meat that they do! Sometimes I get this and a small-medium salad to go with it.

And Fine Foods do a great range of super healthy soups – I find these hard to find! Love getting this in winter when I just don’t have the time to cook up my own.

 

4. TQR (Nedlands)

So this is the best Vietnamese food for dinner! You can also dine in as it is a restaurant. It’s just so fresh and tasty and the portions are nice and generous. I eat it and don’t feel gross and heavy afterwards - like so many other Asian restaurants make me feel.

I always ask for my meals to be prepared gluten-free and it’s possible! They just use gluten-free sauces when they’re cooking your meals. Definitely get this with a group of people so you can order a few things and share.

What do I get?

The basil chicken stirfry, the red and green curries and the steamed Asian vegetables. The vegetables are great as they bulk up your meals and gather all the yummy sauces so I don’t really feel the need to eat rice. It’s a great feeling to feel full of heaps of vegetables.

 

5. Mamatran

Low carb recipes

Another great, super cheap Vietnamese place. I prefer it for lunch when you just want a meal for yourself (TQR is more of the place where you need a few people to share it with I think!).

What do I get?

The chicken salad or the vegetarian rice paper rolls. The pho’s are great too but I just haven’t tried them yet!

I hope you enjoyed reading this!

Want more help? You can now purchase my Dining Out Guide for only $6 here . It is also included as a bonus document in the 3 Week Body Reset Plan.

Bec xx

My Top 5 Short-Term Anti-Bloat Tips

Gut Health Meal Plan Australia

Waking up with abs but feel pregnant by the afternoon? You're not alone. While this problem is extremely common among women, it's not necessarily normal and shouldn't be happening. 

I experienced this issue for 7 years and assumed it would be with me for life but it is definitely fixable. You need to be your own detective and get to the bottom of what's causing the constant bloat. For me, addressing my food sensitivities and working with different probiotics to correct the balance of my gut bacteria has done wonders. 

Now, while it is a long - term issue to work on and solve, there are a definitely a few simple things that you can do today that will help to keep you feeling "flat-stomached" and bloat free. 

1. Avoid these common 'bloat-causing' foods

  • Gluten found in bread, pasta, crackers, grains (except for quinoa and brown rice)

  • Dairy (milk, cream and yogurt). Cheese can usually be ok if eaten in small amounts

  • Beans and lentils

  • Large amounts of cruciferous vegetables like broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage and brussel sprouts

  • Fried or spicy foods

  • Sugar-free foods (like sweetened drinks, lollies or chewing gum)

  • Large amounts of garlic or onion if you're sensitive to FODMAP foods.

2. Choose your drink wisely

You really want to avoid anything that has bubbles. This will create gas in your stomach and result in bloating and pain. So, avoid champagne, carbonated water, beer and ciders.

3. Physical activity

Try to move around and go for a little walk after your meals. Physical activity can help release trapped gas and pain. 

4. Take one of these two things before meals

  • Apple cider vinegar: Dilute 1 tablespoon in water and drink right before your meals

  • Activated charcoal: This is an over-the-counter medication that helps eliminate gas trapped in your colon. Take tablets right before and one hour after your meals.

5. Have the right medication on hand

Now, medication is only going to mask the symptoms, and it's not a long-term solution to bloating. However, when the bloating strikes out of the blue and you're at a function in a tight dress - you need some quick-acting help stat. Carry in your bag...

  • An anti-gas medication that helps to reduce the size of the gas bubbles in your colon to make them dissipate and pass through easier. Common ones are made of simethicone and go by the names of Gas-x, Mylanta-Gas, Phazyme and De-gas.

  • A medication that helps to stop cramps and pain like buscopan.

You may need both of these or just one. 

I hope this helps you! Like I said, bloating can be a long-term issue to work on, and getting to the root cause of your own personal situation can take time. 

If you seem to be bloated all the time and can't work out what the cause is, I can definitely help you. Please see my services page for more information and contact me. I would love to help you. 

Bec xx

Why Listen To Me?

There are hundreds of Nutritionists, Dieticians and "Weight Loss Experts" out there. So why listen to me? I want you to stop listening to the old school advice that is out there. I also want you to stop following and believing the dietary advice that comes from genetically blessed people posing with fake Instagram accounts. If you are serious about losing weight or improving your health in any way, please read this short blog post that I have written to see where my knowledge and passion comes from...

Nutritionist Cottesloe

Firstly; I am a major foodie, however in the past I have struggled to maintain the weight that I like to be. So finding that balance has been hard! I have been through fad diets and tough times with other health issues, so I know how it feels. I have battled with chronic digestive issues for the past 7 years and only in the past year have I finally found the exact way to heal myself.. and I'm starting to feel AMAZING. Finally I'm not bloating and I used to think this was going to be a part of my life forever. I have also been diagnosed with a low thyroid but I am working on fixing that too. I also know that so many of you are like me and want to be at a weight that is healthy for you but at the same time enjoy food and not have to hold back or feel restricted.

It can feel like a constant battle, and I understand that sometimes it can feel like you have tried absolutely everything but NOTHING seems to work. I get you. Fixing your health and weight concerns can be a difficult process for so many reasons and I make it my mission every day to get to the bottom of them. This is why I actually specialise in weight loss, as I seem to have an extreme passion for this area of research.

I am also infatuated by the science of the human body and the powerful role that food plays in how we function as human beings. This is what led me to study a Bachelor of Science Nutrition when I was 20, and since the day that I finished that degree, I haven't stopped learning.

I also see faults in the way that diabetics are told to manage their condition, and the current guidelines that exist just don't help so many of us. My degree has provided me with the foundations to pick apart the science that exists and de-bunk many myths that exist.

Nutritionist Cottesloe

I have an extreme passion and drive every single day to share this growing knowledge with others. That's another thing that I love to do; help others. Seeing people become happier because of something that I have done genuinely makes me happy.

This drive is what keeps me going. All I want to do day in and day out is continue to learn so that I can help as many of you as I can. Food has the ability to do this. Eat correctly and it has the ability to make you feel good, live longer, reach a healthy weight and prevent illness and disease.

So, I bring my personal experience together with my extensive knowledge and drive for research to bring you information that is totally up to date and what I believe to be unique to what you may have tried before.

It's a confusing world, it really is, and I want to end the confusion for you. I want to help you finally get on the right track with your eating habits, find that healthy balance and be able to use food as your medicine to heal any other health issues that you may have.  

Please explore my website, check out my services, where I offer one on one consultations and personalised meal plans. Also, have a look at my 3 Week Body Reset Plan, which I have created after constructing over 500 personalised meal plans which simultaneously focused on weight loss, inflammation and optimising gut health that delivered amazing results, that have drawn on common themes to construct this plan that brings you not only science based, but tried and tested results-based information.  

Bec xx