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OT - Tone-up Tuesday

Aniki-Moderator's picture

Happy Tuesday, STalkers! How are you doing with your health/exercise plan? Craving some sugar? Read on!!

We need sugar to survive, both physically and emotionally (where's my Mint Mackinaw Island Fudge?!). You can have too much of a good thing (ugh, I ate it ALL), but do NOT cut out ALL fruits when trying to limit your sugar intake. Fruits contain important nutrients like vitamin C, fiber, and antioxicants. Bonus: Increasing your intake of fruits and veggies has been shown to reduce your cancer and mortality risk.

So reach for fruits that are lower in sugar per serving. While there are not any official guidelines as to what constitutes a "low-sugar" fruit, fruits containing higher fiber and water content dilute the amount of sugar or carbohydrate in a fruit.

Here are some fruits that will allow you to get your sugar fix minus the dreaded energy crash.

  1. Avocado
    Avocados are tasty and low in sugar and make the perfect dessert substitute. Just swap your typical sweetener for some pureed avocado in your favorite milkshake, mousse, and cake recipes.
    Per 1/3 fruit: 80 cal, 7g fat (1g sat), 4g carbs, 0.3g sugar, 4mg sodium, 3g fiber, 1g protein.
  2. Watermelon
    Watermelon might become your favorite workout recovery snack! In a small study, researchers found that the amino acids in the fruit juice helped athletes recover faster (and feel less sore) after working out. Watermelon is also high in the antioxicand lycopene.
    Per 1 cup serving: 46 cal, 0g fat (0g sat), 12g carbs, 10g sugar, 2mg sodium, 1g figer, 1g protein.
  3. Apples
    An apple is the perfect mid-day snack because of the high soluble fiber content, which absorbs water to become thick like the viscous texture of cooked oatmeal. They've also been shown to lower your "bad" LD cholesterol levels.
    Per small apple: 77 cal, 0g fat (0g sat), 21g carbs, 15g sugar, 0mg sodium, 4g fiber, 0g protein.
  4. Strawberries
    This fruit is packed with vitamin C and other antioxidants, has a decent amount of fiber, and can help reduce inflammation. Did you know it isn't technically a berry?
    Per 1 cup serving: 49 cal, 0g fat (0g sat), 12g carbs, 7g sugar, 2mg sodium, 3g fiber, 1g protein.
  5. Grapefruit
    This citrus fruit ranks low on the sugar scale, with a bitter tartness to match. You also get half of your daily recommended value of vitamin C by eaitng just half of one. BUT talk to your doc if you're taking meds!! Grapefruit and grapefruit juice can have bad interactions with several types of drugs, including statins for cholesterol and even some types of antihistamines.
    Per 1/2 medium grapefruit: 41 cal, 0.2g fat (0g sat), 10g carbs, 9g sugar, 0mg sodium, 1g fiber, 0.8g protein.
  6. Lime
    Limes are another great low-sugar fruit: only one gram of sugar in the entire fruit. You'll also get nearly a third of your daily vitamin C dose per fruit. So don't be afraid to use it to flavor salad dressings and fish tacos, or garnish your seltzer water when you're feeling fancy.
    Per medium lime: 20 cal, 0g fat (0g sat), 7g carbs, 1g sugar, 1mg sodium, 2g fiber, 0.5g protein.
  7. Olives
    That's right - your favorite martini garnish is a fruit! The Mediterranean diet has long been touted as the pathway to longevity, and olives are a staple. A small study found that polyphenol-rich olive oil is linked to decreased blood pressure in women who have high blood pressure or hypertension. While low in sugar, olives are often sold in cans and jars high in sodium, so keep an eye on portion sizes!
    Per 2 Tbsp serving: 20 cal, 2g fat (0.5g sat), 1g carbs, 0g sugar, 124mg sodium, 0g fiber, 0g protein.
  8. Cucumbers
    As a green-juice ingredient, we typically think of cukes as spa-friendly veggies. Surprise: They’re actually a fruit! You can safely eat up to three and a half cups of cucumbers as a serving (since they're basically all water), making them great for mindless munching. Wow!!!
    Per 1/2 cup serving: 8 cal, 0g fat (0g sat), 2g carbs, 1g sugar, 1mg sodium, 0g fiber, 0g protein.
  9. Tomatoes
    Tomatoes are a rich source of the carotenoid lycopene, which can help protect the skin against ultraviolet rays (sorry - it canNOT replace SPF), strengthen bones, and even prevent asthma. It's also low in carbohydrates.
    Per 1 cup serving: 32 cal, 0g fat (0g sat), 7g carbs, 5g sugar, 9mg sodium, 2g fiber, 2g protein.
  10. Squash
    That's right: squash is alos a fruit.
    While squash has a rep for being starchy, it offers way more benefits than other starchy carbs like bread and potatoes. Squash's fiber can help stabilize blood sugar levels while slowing down digestion—keeping the intestinal tract healthy and keeping you full for longer.
    Per 1-cup serving: 63 cal, 0g fat (0g sat), 16g carbs, 3g sugar, 6mg sodium, 3g fiber, 1.5g protein.


ProbablyAlreadyInsane's picture

I love Squash and Avacados especially!!! With Watermelon and Strawberries right up there too!!! I wish I had gotten to plant my garden this year!!!

I've been washing all my clothes, that house is rather filthy and they're questionable, so i decided to wash everything... So I woke up for the gym this morning, then found out half-asleep my had stupidly threw all my sports bras in the washer last night... Go figure...

Aniki-Moderator's picture

I like everything on that list - some more than others.

Strawberries in a salad. Watermelon as a meal. Avocado as a sandwich spread. How about a BAT sammich? Bacon, Avocado, and Tomato? Nom nom nom...

Um.... duct tape? Wink

ProbablyAlreadyInsane's picture

Yummmm!!! That sounds heavenly!!!

Half asleep me didn't think of a solution, just grumbled as I started laundry and climbed back into bed. LMAO

Iamwoman's picture

I’m bookmarking this. Thank you for compiling and sharing this Aniki!

Grapefruits have actually saved my life. They lower the autoimmune response, which for someone like me who has IgAN, has been a Godsend in keeping my immune system from attacking my own body. Most people with my condition have to go on steroids to lower the immune response, but I’ve avoided that by eating grapefruit! (Don’t tell big pharma) Wink

Aniki-Moderator's picture

Your secret is safe with me, Iamwoman! One of my nicknames is The Vault. Secrets go in, but they never come out... LOL

Here's a tasty tip for you... Sprinkle some on your grapefruit and broil for a couple of minutes. Yum!

ESMOD's picture

I have been eating peaches the last week.  I planted 3 trees in front of my house 5 years ago and they fortunately don't ripen all at once... well.. not all the trees.  The first tree is now in the ripe stage.. and that is a LOT of fruit.  I froze peaches last year and am just now getting through them in my breakfast

Aniki-Moderator's picture

ESMOD, I'd love to take some of those peaches off of your hands. Peach is my DH's favorite pie!

I love the combo of peach and blueberry. Blueberries have antioxidants! Blend them up with some rum. Drinks

Aniki-Moderator's picture

Here's a tasty recipe that uses 3 of those ingredients.

Tomato Avocado Cucumber Salad

  • 2 cups chopped tomatoes (I used cherry tomatoes, both red and sunburst)
    larger tomatoes, chop in 1/2 inch pieces
  • 2 ripe avocados, cubed
  • 1 small cucumber, sliced
  • 1/4 small red onion, sliced (or less, if strong)
  • 6-8oz feta cheese crumbles
  • 1/4 cup minced cilantro or parsley
  • Juice of 1 lime
  • 2 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 tsp red pepper flakes
  • Salt and black pepper to taste
  1. In a large salad, place the tomatoes, avocado, onion, cucumber, and cilantro/parsley.
  2. Drizzle with olive oil, lime juice, pepper flakes, and salt & pepper to taste. Gently toss.
  3. Serve immediately or cover with plastic wrap in the refrigerator for up to 2 hours.

Major Blunder's picture

Ok, I'll weigh in here but please don't hate me.......

I'm the opposite of most of you, yes I am a man,  not the reason, yes men burn fat differently than women, still not the reason, due to my disability my metabolism is basically off the charts, I was ill for basically the first four months of this year and lost two pants sizes due to lack of appetite ( I neither suggest nor condone getting the stomach flu to lose weight) So loosing weight is not something I look for, packing on weight and turning it to muscle is another story and a sorted one at that.

However I happen love almost everything Aniki mentioned I just eat a whole lot more of it, and for fun not to count anything.

ProbablyAlreadyInsane's picture

Why would we hate you?

LOL I burn through about 4000 calories a day right now. The gym and a fast metabolism, I'm starving bascially every half hour. LMAO I worked it's efficiency up, and I think it went too far some days.

I hope everything got sorted out though with you being ill Sad I understand not wanting to lose weight... I like building muscle too, something a lot of people don't understand. I eat a certain way, but eat a lot of it, because I want to build muscle, not lose weight or gain fat.

Aniki-Moderator's picture

Piffle, Major. I don't hate you. You're not the only person I know who has to work at gaining/maintaining weight.

Psssst.... add some bacon to that recipe I posted.