Is it better to eat fruit before or after a meal?

Some people prefer to enjoy fruit for breakfast or afternoon tea, while others eat it at the start or end of lunch or dinner. 

Is it better to eat fruit before or after a meal
fruits quality

Is it better to consume this food before or after meals? We take stock with the dietician and nutritionist Laura Tajan.

Sweet, refreshing, juicy, colorful, and fragrant ... The fruits revive the taste buds of young and old. In addition to their taste benefits, these foods are full of many virtues and are essential for a balanced diet. They are rich in vitamins, minerals, and fiber. 

Fruits are therefore valuable allies in preventing cancer, cardiovascular disease, obesity, and diabetes. This is why it is recommended to eat several servings of fruit per day. These foods can be served as a starter, aperitif, or dessert. But when is the ideal time to consume them? Before or after the meal?

Is eating fruit before a meal recommended?

According to a dietician and nutritionist Laura Tajan, it is recommended that you consume a fruit a few minutes before eating a meal rather than an hour or two before. When the fruit is eaten near meals, it is thus mixed with the other ingested foods, the food bolus will therefore contain enough fiber and the assimilation of sugars will thus be slowed down.

"If you eat a fruit a few hours before lunch or dinner, it will be the only food to arrive in the stomach, which will be empty or almost. The result: the body will digest the fruit more easily, which will cause faster assimilation of sugars. This will create a peak in energy and if we do not spend physically after consumption, the sugars will be stored as fat, which will lead to weight gain ", explains the dietician.

Eating fruit on its own an hour or two before a meal can also cause reactive hypoglycemia in some people. In this situation, the pancreas secretes too much of a hormone called "insulin". This suddenly lowers the level of sugar in the bloodstream, which leads to reactive hypoglycemia.

Is it a good idea to eat fruit after a meal?

"It is also possible to consume a fruit up to 20 minutes after a meal," says Laura Tajan. In this case, the fruit taken as a dessert will be mixed with the nutrients tasted. The food bolus, which will include a good amount of fiber, will be reduced to a paste, called chyme. This then passes into the intestine to be assimilated. Conclusion: the sugars present in the fruit will take time to be digested.

Between 20 to 40 minutes after a meal, it is better to avoid tasting a fruit because the stomach will have already started its work, which will slow down and deteriorate the quality of digestion. Beyond these 40 minutes, if the fruit is ingested, the sugars will be assimilated quickly because it will be the only one to be digested by the stomach. "It can also lead to weight gain," warns the nutritionist.

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