You know that healthy weight loss comes as a result of regular exercise and a diet filled with plenty of fruits and vegetables.
But is anything with the word "fruit" or that contains one fruit or another a valid way to meet your fruit quota? No. Here's proof.
Proof One: Fruity, Sweet Cereals
By now, eating bowl after bowl of fruity cereals that leave your milk pink and orange may only be a problem for your kids. But if you're still addicted to the cereals that claim to have some semblance of fruit but are filled with added sugars and calories, it's time for a change. Sure, they may taste good, but sugar-laden breakfast cereals are ruining your fitness results—even if they supposedly have real fruit flavors. Wean yourself from the fruity cereals by chopping some real fruit into a bowl of healthy, sugar-free, cereal.
Proof Two: Fruity Desserts
Your stomach may think strawberry ice cream, raspberry cheesecake, and cherry pie are desserts from healthy heaven, but your mind knows otherwise. Though many desserts that lean on fruit for flavor are unhealthy, there are also many healthy fruit-based desserts to enjoy. Fruit parfait and fruit sorbet are good alternatives. And if you just have to have your cake and eat it with berries too, a light angel food will do just fine. Just make sure the slice of cake is thin.
Proof Three: Fruit Smoothies
Now, now. Don't get all up in arms. All fruit smoothies are not unhealthy. In fact, some of them are quite healthy, giving you a big boost of vitamins and minerals that help you feel energetic and ready to face the day. However, if you dabble too far beyond the healthy fruit smoothie, you can add more sugar than is found in many desserts.
To keep your smoothie nice and healthy, don't add soft-serve ice cream or frozen yogurt, candy, or other items that are obviously high in sugar and unnecessary calories. Rather, keep your smoothie nothing but fruit, ice, almond milk, yogurt, and a nice scoop of protein powder to ensure it is high on the health chart.
Proof Four: (Un)Fruit Juice
Juice can be wonderful. It has great flavor, great color, and great amounts of important vitamins and minerals. At least it does when it is fruit juice. Unfortunately, many drinks claim to be fruit juice, while only containing a very low amount of fruit juice. For these low-fruit fruit juices, sugar and water make up the bulk of the contents, robbing you of the important benefits of all-natural fruit juice.
Keep fruit juice indulgences to a minimum, as even the fruit-only kind is loaded with simple sugars.
Go Natural. To clearly sidestep unhealthy fruit options, go for raw, whole fruits and avoid packaged fruit in any shape or form. These will keep you on track with your fitness and weight loss goal.
Don't forget that true success comes from a combination of a consistent, challenging exercise routine coupled with clean eating.