I'm a big believer that eating foods as close to the way God made them is the healthiest way to go. So when people start villainizing fruit I get a little irritated.
The biggest beef I hear people raise about fruit is that it has so many sugars. And of course it does indeed have a natural source of sugar in it, since it tastes sweet. But the key word here is NATURAL. It's sweet in the form sweet is supposed to be: In a food un-tampered and strait from nature. There are fiber and other nutrients in fruits that, when eaten in moderation (more about that later), make their sugars a not-very-big concern. The components of fruit are compatible with each other for maximum benefit to our bodies. God's was kinda smart that way: When He made us and then made fruit as one of the foods for us to eat, He sorta knew what He was doing.
The problem comes in when you take fruit apart and mutilate it. You remove the skin. You smoosh it up and leave the pulp behind. You bathe it in sugar and white flour and shortening and put it in the oven and call it pie. "But hey!", folks reason, "It's got fruit in it! That means it's at least a little good for me, right?" Er...... not really. You just destroyed the integrity of a whole food.
I'm not saying never enjoy a piece of apple pie. Into everyone's life a little dessert must fall. What I am saying is that a piece of apple pie should be a rare treat, and a whole apple should be a regular occurrence.
No one can ever deny that the healthiest way to eat an apple is just bite into it raw- peel and all.
And fructose? Yes, it's fruit sugar, but again, it's been separated from the fruit. By the time it gets processed out it's as poor nutritionally as plain white sugar. So don't think that a food that uses fructose as opposed to sugar is any better for you. It's not.
BUT we must keep in mind that fruit DOES have more dietary sugars than other natural foods and CAN contribute to a stall in weight loss if it is over eaten. It would be hard to get extremely overweight from eating too much fruit (although not impossible). But on the other hand, it would be easy to stall your weight loss if you over-indulge. I've actually seen this happen with the Weight Watchers program, which, last I knew, let folks have unlimited fruits as long as they stop eating when they are satisfied. Hey.... If those people knew how to stop when they were satisfied, they wouldn't need Weight Watchers in the first place! Unlimited non-starchy veggies? It would be really hard to eat enough of those to stop weight loss. But unlimited fruit, which is much more calorie dense? It's very conceivable a stall would happen. (If you want to know more, I blogged about tweaking the Weight Watchers program to get around this and other issues here: www.sparkpeople.com/mypa
One last word: Often when someone wants to "Cut in" or "lean out" a coach will recommend omitting fruit to get those last 2 or 3 pounds off. Keep in mind: This is a TEMPORARY situation. Reduction of every little bit of dietary sugars, even in the most natural forms, WILL help you shed some water weight for something like a photo shoot or figure show. Living the rest of your life without eating fruit (or dairy- another thing that gets cut for situations like this) is unrealistic and denies your body nutrients it needs in their most readily-absorb-able and natural forms.
So limit fruit to one or two pieces a day, and enjoy every last bite without guilt. It won't hurt you, and will deliver nutrients that aren't available in many other foods.