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Best Time to Eat Fruits - Nutritionist Backed | Bodywise


6 min read
Best Time to Eat Fruits - Nutritionist Backed | Bodywise

We all are aware of the benefits of fruits for our health. They decrease the risk of heart diseases, maintain blood pressure as well as provide protection against cancer-causing cells. However, when it comes to the best time to eat fruits, we often get confused. To obtain health benefits and avoid adverse effects, one should consume them in the right quantity and at the right time.

In this article, we will discuss the best and worst times to eat them, along with busting some myths about the best time to eat fruits.

Best Time to Eat Fruits

Some people say that morning is the best time to eat fruits. The logic they give is that eating fruits on an empty stomach improves digestion, maintains weight, detoxifies body systems, and prevents certain obesity-related diseases. Others claim that afternoon is the best time for eating fruits.

However, these suggestions are not backed by any scientific evidence. The only valid reason for such recommended timings is that eating fruit in the afternoon or morning raises blood sugar levels and activates your digestive system. It is a fact that they are better digested empty stomachs and give much-needed energy in the morning to kick-start the day. If you eat fruits by the start of the day, you will be active and productive the whole day.

The Worst Time to Eat Fruits

One must not eat fruits just before going to sleep. It is the worst time to eat them because that can increase the blood sugar level and will keep you awake the whole night.

It is also suggested by many health experts that you should eat dinner at least 2-3 hours before going to bed. Having dinner immediately before you sleep can lead to indigestion, acidity, and bloating.


Myths About the Best Time to Eat Fruit

Various myths revolve around the right time to eat fruits. Some of them with facts are mentioned below:

1. You Must Not Eat Fruits With Meals

It is said that eating fruits with meals slows down the digestive process and causes food to ferment or rot in the stomach. This leads to gastric issues, acidity, discomfort, and other digestive problems.

Eating fruits with meals indeed decreases digestion due to the fibre present in them, but any scientific evidence does not support the remaining claims; hence they are untrue. Fruit helps remain full for a longer duration and gives energy throughout the day, but it does not cause the food to remain in the stomach indefinitely.

2. Having Fruit Pre or Post Meal Decreases its Nutrient Value

According to this myth, you can attain all nutritional benefits of fruit only by eating it on an empty stomach, and having it before or after any meal reduces its nutrient value. This is false. Your body functions in a way that it performs multiple processes efficiently to extract all the nutrients from food.

The small intestine is gigantic and has a huge absorptive area, which means that it absorbs as many nutrients as possible from the food or fruit you eat readily. It is immaterial for the intestine whether you eat fruits on an empty stomach or with a meal.

3. Diabetic People Should Eat Fruits 1–2 Hours Before or After Meals

Some people claim that diabetic people usually have digestive problems, and to improve their digestive system, they must eat fruits at least 1-2 hours before or after a meal. However, this claim lacks scientific evidence.

When you eat fruits separately, the carbs and sugar content of fruit may enter the bloodstream at a faster rate, which may prove harmful for diabetic people. When you eat something, the stomach works as a reservoir and releases only a small quantity of food at a time into your small intestine for easy digestion.

So one must pair fruits with the meal or snack high in protein, fibre, or fat instead of eating them separately. This is beneficial for diabetic people because a smaller amount of sugar is absorbed at a time which may cause only a smaller rise in their overall blood sugar levels.

Some diabetic people may develop digestive problems such as gastroparesis, which can be treated by making dietary changes and doing exercises.

4. Morning Is The Only Best Time To Eat Fruits

There is no scientific evidence that supports this claim. Regardless of the time, fruits raise the blood sugar level while glucose is being absorbed in the body. They are healthy for the body any time of the day. However, one must not eat fruits just before going to bed.

5. You Should Not Eat Fruit After 2:00 PM

It is claimed that eating fruits after 2:00 PM raises blood sugar, and the body does not have enough time to stabilise such an increased level before bedtime, which, in turn, can lead to weight gain. However, this is not true. Your body's carb tolerance may fluctuate throughout the day, but these changes are not enough to affect the overall metabolic rate.

Also, the claim that eating fruits after 2:00 PM leads to weight gain is not true. Though your metabolic rate decreases while you sleep, you still burn calories.  


Best Time to Eat Fruits for Weight Loss

There is no right or the perfect time to eat fruits for weight loss. Fruits are high in fibre. So you remain full for a longer duration after consuming them, which prevents overeating. Taking fewer calories promotes weight loss. So you can have a low-calorie and high-fibre fruit with the meal at any time of the day.

You can also consume fruit as a snack to avoid munching on processed food items and control food cravings. According to research, various types of fruits have an anti-obesity effect because of the following reasons:

  • Fruits are low in calories per serving.
  • Fruits contain vitamins and phytochemicals that are required for a healthy body.
  • Fruits may also feed a healthy gut microbiome.
  • Fruits such as watermelon and apple are high in water and fibre content which may boost the feelings of satiety.
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Best Time to Eat Fruits for People With Diabetes

If someone has diabetes, they must avoid fruits rich in carbohydrates and sugar, which can affect blood sugar levels. Yet it does not mean that they can not at all eat fruits. For getting healthy minerals, nutrients, and phytochemicals, you must include fruits in your diet.

Diabetic people can eat fruits having a low glycemic index rate and high fibre, such as cherries, plums, etc., at any time during the day. They should eat fruits with other high protein or fat meals to overcome their effect on the blood sugar level. Fibre-rich fruits with meals slow the sugar entry to the small intestine. Diabetic people can eat a whole fruit provided its intake should be below 12% of the overall calories intake.

Summing Up on Best Time to Eat Fruits

Fruits provide vitamins, minerals, and other nutrients to the body irrespective of consumption time. There is no best or right time to eat fruits. You can have them at any time of the day. You should manage the fruit intake depending on your preference and lifestyle. Eat a balanced diet and avoid eating too many fruits as they may cause problems such as diarrhoea due to the presence of high fibres.

FAQs

Can Fruits Be Eaten Empty Stomach?

Yes, you can have fruits on an empty stomach. There is no harm in eating fruits on an empty stomach. However, a diabetic person must avoid eating fruit on an empty stomach as it may quickly increase blood sugar levels.

Is It Good to Eat Fruit at Night?

No, it is not advisable to eat fruits at night. Fruit intake at night increases the energy levels in the body and disturbs sleep.

Can I Eat Only Fruits for Dinner?

No, you should not eat only fruits for dinner. Your dinner should be a combination of carbs, protein, and fibre. You can have a light meal at night if you are planning for weight loss but skipping meals is not healthy for anyone.

What Happens if We Eat Fruits Daily?

Fruit is a part of a balanced diet. Eating them daily enhances the digestive system, keeps you active, and improves your overall health. However, one must not eat too many fruits, leading to diarrhoea. Everyone should keep a balanced intake of fruits and other food items.

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