7 - Fruits & Sweets


Why: All sweeteners can cause spikes in blood sugar (unless you try the suspect world of artificial sweeteners; read the article “Sugar-Free Blues: Everything You Wanted to Know About Artificial Sweeteners” if you are tempted). Using stronger tasting sweeteners allows you to reduce the amount and still feel satisfied. These usually contain minerals, enzymes and vitamins too.

How: Examples of stronger tasting sweeteners include molasses, darker honeys, evaporated cane juice (Sucanat and Rapadura), real maple syrup and pureed fruit.

[TRICK] Sometimes adding more vanilla or cinnamon or other flavorings can help when reducing the amount of sweetener.


Why: Whole fruits contain sugars, vitamins and minerals plus fiber. Juices are much more concentrated and have much of the fiber removed. This makes juice a high sugar food. It is quite easy to drink the equivalent of 3 apples in a glass of juice but much harder to eat those 3 apples in one sitting. Fiber fills you up, slows down the digestion. If you make fresh vegetables juices, it is okay to add some fruit, just not too much.

How: Drink Water, Chew Fruit. It's that simple. While transitioning, you can try diluting your juice with water.

[TIP] Buy fruit that is in season. So in the middle of summer, eat peaches and plums, not apples. Apples and pears in the fall. Strawberries in late spring. In late winter, enjoy berries out of the freezer.


Why: We all know there is an epidemic of diabetes and obesity in this country. Much of it is related to the average 196 pounds of sugar per person eaten each year. That comes to a half a pound a day! Our bodies do not handle this much sugar well. They are designed to store sugar as fat during the good times like when the berries are ripe so we have enough fat to survive the lean times, like winter. Yet today there is too much food all the time. And much of that is of such low quality, our bodies crave more. What we are really craving are more vitamins, more protein, more fatty acids, and more minerals.

How: For many giving up all sweets is a real struggle. Do you have dessert every night? Need something sweet after every meal? Try these techniques: Improve the quality of your treats while having them less often. Make them special! Eat more custards made with whole milk and lots of eggs. Make fruit desserts and put in half the recommended amount of sweetener but increase the fat. Then next time, put in even less sweetener. Use almond or coconut flour instead of grain based flours.

Ready for more?

Book: "Get the Sugar Out" by Ann Louise Gittleman, PhD, CNS (501 simple ways to cut the sugar out of any diet; available in Whatcom County Library System)

Online article: Zapping Sugar Cravings by Jen Allbritton, CN

Website: Primal Body, Primal Mind Blog 

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