Self-Experimenting: Fructose

This is Day Two of my attempt to limit my fructose intake. Why am I doing this?I’ve been reading about agave, after hearing that it may not be the wonder food some in the raw community think it is. I first encountered it last summer on a trip to Bellingham, Washington. I had seen it mentioned in some of Ani Phyo’s raw recipes, so was delighted to find the real thing. It was not cheap but we got a couple of bottles.

The agave was great in our raw food recipes, and once the bottles were empty, we found that our neighbourhood Costco had begun selling it, cheap. I wondered at the time what effect a distribution network like Costco would do to it. Could the quality be maintained when it was mass produced? What about the source of the agave plant? Would mass production be harmful for the, and its, environment?

We have been buying and using agave, but after hearing some potentially negative things about it, I decided to do some online reading. Along with about a half dozen articles, I found a Dr. Mercola article This Sweetener Is Far Worse Than High Fructose Corn Syrup which also discussed fructose. The middle of the article has a chart with the fructose levels of various fruits:

Fructose chart from Dr. Mercola

Fructose chart from Dr. Mercola

After reading the article I realized that maybe I am eating too much fructose. Last summer I cut out processed foods, and other than the rare treat (holiday feasting), and eating out 1-2 times a month, about 90% of the fruits and vegetables I eat are raw. Having gone from 200 pounds down to 173, cycling 80 KM a week, other exercising and yoga about 2-3 hours a week I still have a belly. a beer gut, even though I was never a beer drinker and now don’t touch any alcohol at all. Even when I was running half marathons and did lots of sit-ups, I still had a gut.

You may be thinking that is is alright to eat fructose in fruits, because that is ‘natural’ versus the fructose in processed foods. From what I read, maybe not. Fructose may be fructose, with the same effect on our bodies, in whatever form. I’ll experiment with my food regimen for the next month and see what happens.

My morning cereal, which is mainly almonds, pecans, walnuts, and various seeds soaked, rinsed, and put through a Magic Bullet, sometimes with rejuvelac (wheatgrass) and dates, and poured over a bowl of sliced fresh fruits, may be too much fructose. I’ve eliminated the dates and all fruits except for one banana, and have added in locally grown blackberries and raspberries.

My daily smoothie, an eclectic mix of, in descending order: fruits, vegetables, sprouts, nuts, olive oil and spices, has had the fruits removed. This morning’s was barely palatable. It needs some work.

Over the next month I’ll try to eat this way, and see how eating much less fruit, but more vegetables, affects me and my gut. Hopefully I will find ways to make raw food relatively sweeter and more palatable without using fruits with high concentrations of fructose.