13 Health Benefits of Eating Fruits on an Empty Stomach #Surprising
Fruits! No doubt it is one of the best treats from the Mother Nature. Fruits are tasty, with sweet-sour-sometimes tangy flavors. Fruits also contain plenty of substances needed by our body to stay healthy, such as vitamins, minerals, fibers, and antioxidants. Eating a lot of fruits also gives positive effects on beauty, since fruits have plenty of vitamins and antioxidants that help fight early aging.
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Breaking The Myth
About the Asian myth that “eating fruits early in the morning can make us get diarrhea”, the myth was probably made because in ancient time, there was no soap nor any antibacterial agents, so the handling of the fruits could be unhygienic, therefore could make people get enteritis. Symptoms of enteritis include diarrhea, stomach
cramps, bloating, and vomiting. I personally have no problems eating fruits in the morning, as long as the fruits are already cleaned and handled with clean hands and clean utensils.
Good Effects of Eating Fruits in the Morning
In this article, I will explain the benefits of eating fruits on an empty stomach. Indeed, the nutrient contents of the fruits will not change, but the nutrient contents will affect absorption of other substances in the meals we take. It is advised to eat fruits 15-30 minutes before meals, as we will get more benefits as mentioned below.
1. Avoid Indigestion
Roughly, fruits contain only water, sugar, vitamins, minerals and fibers. Some fruits may contain protein and fats, but not as much as eggs, meat or dairy products. Therefore, fruits is easier to digest, and the fiber will just pass to the guts.
Actually, the fermentation of fruits never happens in our stomach. The stomach discomforts or indigestion happen because we “force” our stomach to produce various enzymes in big quantity early in the morning, and also because the minerals and proteins from foods and fruits bound together, forcing the stomach to produce even more enzymes.
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2. Absorbs More Vitamins and Minerals
Fruits high in vitamin C such as oranges, guava, apples, grapefruits, lemons, pears , berries and kiwis are good to be consumed 15-30 minutes before meal. Vitamin C helps our intestines absorb iron more effectively, prevent us to get anemia.
Empty stomach also absorb vitamins and minerals more effectively than when the fruits are mixed with other foods, since mixing them can cause the minerals and proteins bound together, making it more difficult to digest. Vitamins and minerals are needed by our body cells to make them work and regenerate properly.
When we just wake up, our body cells desperately need sugar to recharge themselves, especially blood cells and brain cells. Fruits contain sugars, which will be absorbed quickly by the cells, thus preventing us to get hypoglycemia. The sugar is in form of fructose, so is low glycemic. Low glycemic sugar is good for diabetics since it is absorbed not as rapidly as sucrose, thus keeping the blood sugar level in normal state. Fruits also contain fiber that helps us to feel full, so we don’t need to take plenty of carbs, which can result in high blood sugar level.
4. Controls Cholesterol
Fruits contain soluble fibers such as pectins. These soluble fibers will bind with LDL (bad cholesterol), preventing LDL to be absorbed in the intestines. Fruits like avocado contain plenty of HDL (good cholesterol). HDL will bind with LDL in the intestines, and just like the fibers do, HDL will prevent LDL to be absorbed in the intestines.
5. Prevents Constipation
Both the soluble and insoluble fibers contained in fruits give more mass to the stool. The solluble fibers will attract water from out of the colon. This makes easier to go to toilet every morning. With the right consistency of the stool, we also don’t need to strain during defecating process, thus preventing us to get thrombosed hemorrhoids.
6. Gives More Energy
Eating fruits in the morning gives the needed sugar to our body cells, especially blood cells and brain cells. This makes us more alert and feel energized at the same time. Moreover, fruits have vitamins and minerals that can boost our energy level. The vitamins and minerals make the body cells work properly, and if needed, the body cells will transform excessive fats into energy.
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Antioxidants, vitamins and minerals contained in fruits will help the liver to detoxify the body by putting away free radicals and healing minor inflammations of our body cells. The detoxification process will make all the body cells work properly, thus we will feel more energized. Detoxification also play big role in delaying aging process. This prevent disease and disorders from aging process, such as heart disease, atherosclerosis, alzheimer and dementia.
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7. Absorbs More Antioxidants
Empty stomach allows absorbtion process of vitamin, minerals and antioxidants more effectively.
Most fruits contains antioxidants called quercetin. Quercetin has been known to fight cancers. Antioxidants are also known to fight early aging process by fighting minor inflammations caused by free radicals. If we consume plenty of antioxidants, our body will look youthful, with healthy tight skin.
8. Weight Loss Treatment
Fruits contain fibers, which can make us feel full for longer time. Eating fruits 15 – 30 minutes before meal can make us feel full easily, so we can’t eat excessively. The longer full period helps avoid food cravings. The sugar contained in the fruits also help avoid sugar cravings in sugar-toothed people. And the soluble fibers bind with LDL (bad cholesterol), preventing it to be absorbed, so our body will not store excessive fats. The detoxification process will make the body cells work properly, and take the already stored fats as their source of energy. This can lead to weight loss.
9. Prevent Serious Diseases
We know that obesity can lead to other disorders or diseases, so we better avoid being obese. Obese people also don’t look good, and they look unhealthy as well.
10. Promotes Healthy Lifestyle
When we just wake up, our stomach is not ready yet to digest “heavy” foods, such as eggs, bacons, cheese and milk. These foods contain high protein, high fat and high calcium. Our stomach needs to prepare plenty of enzymes to digest those foods. Not to mention that some minerals in the fruits can bind with proteins from other foods,
making them more difficult to digest. That is why we can get burps, bloating, heartburn, or other stomach discomforts. We can even get diarrhea if we drink plenty of milk in the morning.
Best Time to Eat Fruits
For years, people always wonder about the best way and the best time of eating fruits. The best way of eating fruits is eating it raw, since any heating can damage some vitamins contained in the fruits. Making juice through the juicer will also lessen fiber contents of the fruits.
Some years ago, it is advised to eat fruits alone on an empty stomach, since eating it with other foods at the same time can cause indigestion problems as the foods can ferment the fruits. But recent studies show that we can eat fruits anytime, and the nutrient contents of the fruits will not change if we eat it after meals or before meals.
There’s also a myth in Asian countries, that eating fruits in the morning can lead to diarrhea and cramped stomach.
Indeed, to get the most benefits from fruits, we should eat the fruits raw, or make it into juice without straining the fibers. Avoid consuming juices from cans or bottle, as they usually contain preservatives and many of vitamins are already damages (for example, vitamin C can be damaged easily by high temperature during sterilization of
Food Combining Idea
The “eating fruits on an empty stomach” method for weight loss has been used by dieticians for years through “food combining“. Basically, food combining is a diet program where you can eat certain kind of foods in certain times.
Usually, food combining will be like this:
- Early in the morning: drink juice of 1 lemon (can be mixed with water) when just wake up (the stomach is really empty)
- Breakfast: eating fruits.
- Morning snack: eating fruits and vegetables (preferably mixed salad with lean dressing).
- Lunch: eating fish / poultry / eggs / meat, making sure that the meat is lean, cook in healthy oils such as olive oil, canola oil, or coconut oil.
- Afternoon snack: eating fruits and vegetables (can be vegetables soup).
- Dinner: eating vegetable proteins, such as tofu, apple, beans and nuts.
So, the best time of eating fruits is in the morning on an empty stomach, or as a mid-morning snacks (between breakfast and lunch). It is advised to eat at least 3-4 serving of fruits everyday.
Fruits are easy to find throughout the world. Of course, the best fruits are the seasonal fruits found in the markets. Seasonal fruits means they are only exist in certain time, making sure that the supply is always fresh and free of preservatives. If we can’t find fresh fruits, for example when we are travelling or camping, it is fine to have dried fruits, but beware of the high sugar contents. Since we have broken the myth, let’s start to consume fruits in early mornings from now on, to get the most of the health benefits of eating fruits on an empty stomach.