For the first two years Rory and I were together I didn’t eat a single piece of fruit. Whaaaaaat!?? I was low carb, duh. Ok I lied, I did have some fruit: there was no shortage of tomatoes, avocados or coconut in my kitchen, but when it comes to the sweet stuff, goose egg. For two years.
Looking back now I want to slap 2009 and 2010 Jenny. That’s two Jersey strawberry seasons forfeited. I cringe at the thought.
This is my rationale: when you’re suuuuper low carb for a long time, one piece of mouth-watering melon can set off a complete diet-derailing if you’re not careful so I avoided it altogether.
I’m not one of those lucky girls who can eat whatever she wants. I have to work to fit into the number I see on my Kate Spade tags. And when I fall, I fall hard so I very rarely stray from my usual eating habits.
I remember when I went Paleo I decided, “I’m just gonna eat fruit dammit; I love it and I want it.” And what happened next seriously shocked me: I lost like five pounds the first week and was eating two or three fruits A DAY!
What I’ve learned from this experience is that you CAN have fruit on a low carb diet! (Cheers all around!) I now have fruit daily and rarely exceed 100 carbs in a day (read THIS for a super helpful breakdown of carb levels– thanks Mark!!).
If you’ve been looooow carb for a while, ease into sweet. Start with a few berries and over the course of a week or so work your way up to a full piece of fruit. The next week work up to two (just the thought seems wild, right?! ha- nutso).
One thing I suggest is this: always eat your fruit with something high fat/protein. I’ll spare you the metabolic breakdown, but it helps prevent post-fruit blood sugar crashes and cravings. I love having raw nuts with my fruit or smearing some Justin’s maple almond butter on my apple slices and macadamias are my absolute favorite pairing with bananas.
You can also add fruit to chia pudding (loaded with fat), a smoothie (with nut butter and/or grassfed protein powder), paleo muffins, etc. Get creative!
That’s it! I hope you’re as excited as I am about eating more fruit — while staying on track with your diet!!
PS If you’re in the U.S. enjoy your Labor Day and have a peach for me 😉