/ Fruit smoothies very confused

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Heike - on 02 Feb 2014

So, this morning i made a nice smoothie out of a few raspberries, an apple a banana and a few grapes for me and my wee boy. But reading everywhere I might have just fed him hamburgers, doughnuts and a few beers. Why are smoothies the new no-nos? Its got lots of vitamins and all the fibre is still in it. I don't get it all, surely better than feeding him fizzy drinks?
Post edited at 20:46
Tall Clare - on 02 Feb 2014
In reply to Heike:

All that terrible fruit sugar, innit? (apparently)

I have to confess to being similarly baffled - it's hard to keep track of what's okay to eat this week.
Dauphin - on 02 Feb 2014
In reply to Heike:

Packed with fructose. Easier to down than the equivalent in unprepared fruit. Which may not be that good for you if drink one a day.

D
Heike - on 02 Feb 2014
In reply to Dauphin:
So how is the chemical composition different if i put it in a blender to eating it, there are still a few hardish chewy fibre bits. I really don't see how eating an apple a banana a few raspberries and grapes between two or juicing it would make any difference?
Post edited at 20:57
Dauphin - on 02 Feb 2014
In reply to Heike:

Some or loads liquified down everyday? Make sure at least they brush their toothy-peggys afterward. It's a lot of acid and sugar.

D
BAdhoc - on 02 Feb 2014
In reply to Heike:

dont brush teeth straight after tho as if you brush when the enamel has been softened by the sugars you can wear it away much quicker.
Heike - on 02 Feb 2014
In reply to Dauphin:

Ok, so shall i feed him raw meat instead of fruit? Carbo is out clearly, so what else is allowed nowadays?
king_of_gibraltar - on 02 Feb 2014
In reply to Heike:

Funny I just came across this thread. I just finished watching a movie where they spoke about smoothies and how they're not good for you, reason was that fruit is good for it's fibre, if you blend it you just get the fructose and few vitamins where by most of its qualities are gone.
Heike - on 02 Feb 2014
In reply to Tall Clare:
> All that terrible fruit sugar, innit? (apparently)

> I have to confess to being similarly baffled - it's hard to keep track of what's okay to eat this week.

I think it's ridiculous really. Nothing appears to be allowed nowadays...
Post edited at 21:00
Tall Clare - on 02 Feb 2014
In reply to Heike:

Obviously you'll be avoiding dairy... that's not encouraged nowadays - and nor is soy, especially for boys (all that oestrogen)
Heike - on 02 Feb 2014
In reply to Dauphin:

Don't understand what you mean?
James90 - on 02 Feb 2014
In reply to Heike:

Just read up a little as hadn't heard this.

It appears that its a case of:
1: more sugar than people realise
2: drinking fills you up less than eating, so you consume more
(eating a few oranges would be quite filling were as drinking the samm mass not so much)

To be honest though i think its a bit of a none story, we always knew that they contained a lot of sugar, nothing new in that.
Heike - on 02 Feb 2014
In reply to king_of_gibraltar:
Hmm, yeah, but where does the fibre go, if you don 't filtre it? That 's my question...
king_of_gibraltar - on 02 Feb 2014
In reply to Heike:

I know, that was what I thought...
Heike - on 02 Feb 2014
In reply to James90:
Yeah, that's about it, but i still think a smoothie once a month isnt a problem? Fact it's great as you get lots of vitamins. I couldn't have got my wee man to eat four different fruit for breakfast, but he loved them ad a smoothie.

Heike - on 02 Feb 2014
In reply to Tall Clare:
I think a pure water diet is the way forward, nothing else ;-)
Dauphin - on 02 Feb 2014
Tall Clare - on 02 Feb 2014
In reply to Heike:

This sounds perfectly logical, and people listening to the notion that 'fruit is bad' (which is what the message gets boiled down to) are, I think, going to end up doing more harm by removing fruit from theirs and their children's diets than if they just carried on as normal.
Tall Clare - on 02 Feb 2014
In reply to Heike:

Best make sure there isn't too much fluoride in it! :-)
Tim Chappell - on 02 Feb 2014
In reply to Heike:
Whizzing the fruit means that the blender breaks down all the cellulose that your digestion would otherwise break down. This breaking down of cellulose is the beneficial effect of what people call fibre.

Without the fibre, you get a much quicker release of the sugar. And fructose is a quick-burn sugar anyway.

Quick releases of quick-burn sugar mean that your system gets a sudden spike in sugar levels, i.e. in blood glucose. This makes your system work hard in a way that risks straining it (if you have a smoothie you can often actually feel your heartbeat rate go up).

What's best for you is slow-release sugar. The best way to get this, other things being equal, is from things like pasta and rice and porridge and granola bars.

That's how I understand it. But I'm not a nutritionist, so I may not be right. And this being UKC, no doubt someone will be along in a moment to shoot me down even if I am...
Post edited at 21:10
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James90 - on 02 Feb 2014
In reply to Heike:

Cant agree more, theirs lots of nutritional value in a smoothie.

This sort of story really annoys me

Its written as 'smoothies bad for you' ... Reading it they actually mean that failing to consume them in moderation is bad for you.
The same can be said of anything
Heike - on 02 Feb 2014
In reply to Tim Chappell:
Oh, but pasta , rice, etc is also food of the devil! I really am confused!
Tall Clare - on 02 Feb 2014
In reply to Tim Chappell:

Apparently this 'breaking down of cellulose in fibre in the blender' is exactly the same as what you do when you chew, so it ends up broken down before it hits your digestive system one way or another. According to the human physiology person sitting opposite me, anyway.
Dauphin - on 02 Feb 2014
In reply to Tim Chappell:

Most of the cellulose is in cell walls AFAI remember from 'A' level biology so whizzing it in a blender isn't going to too much damage. Sticking it in centrifuge probably would though.

D
Heike - on 02 Feb 2014
In reply to James90: we have a smoothie every few months, it's a good way of using up some fruit
Heike - on 02 Feb 2014
In reply to Dauphin:

> Most of the cellulose is in cell walls AFAI remember from 'A' level biology so whizzing it in a blender isn't going to too much damage. Sticking it in centrifuge probably would though.

> D

Exactly my thoughts!
Tim Chappell - on 02 Feb 2014
In reply to Heike:

> Oh, but pasta , rice, etc is also food of the devil! I really am confused!

It is? Now you're confusing me too. Stop it :-)
Heike - on 02 Feb 2014
In reply to Tim Chappell: oh, don 't you know pasta and rice are foods of the devil, too? You better read up...


aln - on 02 Feb 2014
In reply to Tall Clare:

> All that terrible fruit sugar, innit? (apparently)

> I have to confess to being similarly baffled - it's hard to keep track of what's okay to eat this week.

Eat food. In moderation.
Tall Clare - on 02 Feb 2014
In reply to aln:

Exactly! I remember a nutritionist friend saying that, essentially, 'a little of what you fancy does you good', which I thought sounded about right.
Tim Chappell - on 02 Feb 2014
In reply to Heike:

> oh, don 't you know pasta and rice are foods of the devil, too? You better read up...

And get more confused still? I don't believe so. Just a bacon butty for me, I think :-)
Heike - on 02 Feb 2014
In reply to Tim Chappell:
strong coffee and milk with that?

Simos on 02 Feb 2014
In reply to Heike:
I really don't get these 'crazes' or 'findings' about food - people seem to take everything to extremes all the time. Anything in great quantities can be bad for you, even too much water can kill you.

I am sure most of this research has commercial interests behind it (either way). I am sure that a fruit smoothie in moderation (frequency and quantity) is absolutely fine. Too much and the sugar starts becoming a problem.

One thought though (no idea if true or not): by turning fruit into a smoothie it is possible that you are making the sugar release a bit faster than if you just had the fruit instead (ie changes the GI). How much difference this makes I don't know. Apparently for the teeth it's better to drink through a straw - again no idea if it makes a difference.

The danger I think with kids (at least this is the case with my 2 y.o. son) is that you give them something sweet a couple of times and then all of a sudden they start demanding it ALL the time ("juice juice"). My son already eats a lot of fruit so when he starts asking for juice too, we just pour a bit of juice in a glass of water - he seems perfectly content with that! :-)
Post edited at 21:26
veteye - on 02 Feb 2014
In reply to Heike:

There is also the consideration that we are all being worried and concerned about getting the right diet for ourselves, essentially so that we can live longer.Yet if we are constantly worrying about our food then we are not enjoying life..

We may end up living longer,but in a less pleasant way..Nevertheless it may not be pleasant to all end up as lardies not able to climb or bike or walk, and having rotten teeth due to Smoothies and other enjoyable foods.
So maybe the answer is to vacillate between the two polar approaches to diet.(Bad diet Saturday,good diet Sunday etc)
elsewhere on 02 Feb 2014
In reply to Heike:
Smoothies concentrate the sugar hit all at once compared to eating the same fruit throughout the day. Still sounds like a good way to get him to eat fruit!

aln - on 02 Feb 2014
In reply to Tall Clare:

> Exactly! I remember a nutritionist friend saying that, essentially, 'a little of what you fancy does you good', which I thought sounded about right.

I remember my Gran saying it.
Timmd on 03 Feb 2014
In reply to Heike:
> Oh, but pasta , rice, etc is also food of the devil! I really am confused!

Brown rice and pasta aren't I thought?

F*ck it though, let him eat white pasta and just get him to run about a lot soon after, if he's a kid he won't be ill (children never are, it's a fact :-)) and that'll help his body a bit in using up the energy spike*.

*If you have type 1 diabetes in your ancestral family tree, low GI foods might be worth a thought, but so might helping him to avoid acute stress, or helping him to shape a life which doesn't cause acute stress, could also beneficial, since stress can cause rises in blood sugar.

I was especially stressed before developing type 1 diabetes, and it was the 1st thing they asked me about.
Post edited at 00:15
Kemics - on 03 Feb 2014
In reply to Timmd:

Brown rice is okay. Pasta has too much gluten which some peoe theorize is bad for causing inflammation and other stuff in the body. Who really knows though.
bshill - on 03 Feb 2014
In reply to Heike:
Alright just to end to this quickly. Normally when you eat fruit you actually break down very little. Their cells wall walls are made of cellulose. We no longer have the enzyme to break it down (this maybe what the appendix was for - google refection and rabbits! yummy). So you actually get very little from the 'inside' In fact the only bits you get are the cells you break down from your teeth!! This is why it makes great fibre, it's all still intact when it gets to your lovely bowels. Fruit is good for you because it isn't bad for you, and will fill your stomach when you feel like a snack without adding too many calories.

Right now fruit juices/smoothies obviously have a large mechanical process involved which tear apart these cell walls and release the sugar, which is why people say they're bad. Fruit juice ml for ml contains at least the same amount of calories as coca cola.

However which would I rather give my kids?

A glass of smoothie in the morning (every day) is going to do them a good deal of good and sounds like a great idea to me, also letting him taste and get used to a whole load of fruits.

Common sense is needed. Obviously drinking 2 litres of smoothies a day may have drawbacks!


Post edited at 00:21
Timmd on 03 Feb 2014
In reply to Kemics:
Interesting.

Staying up late and lack of sleep as a lifestyle are also thought to be contributors to developing diabetes.

I'm thinking diet is possibly only part of what people should be looking at, in that we need to be living healthy lives in having them as natural as possible, when it comes to sleep cycles, and not too stressed. We'll be happier on the whole if nothing else.

He writes; still being up at 20 past midnight... Time for bed Tim!
Post edited at 00:27
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abseil on 03 Feb 2014
In reply to Heike:

Over decades, I'm sick of reading changing advice re good/ bad foods. Butter's bad for you. Good for you. Margarine's good for you. Bad for you. Etc.

So I understand your confusion.

My advice, give the poor lad a smoothie and well done.
Jonny2vests - on 03 Feb 2014
In reply to abseil:

> My advice, give the poor lad a smoothie and well done.

Yeah, just don't give him one every day.
galpinos - on 03 Feb 2014
In reply to Heike:

As with all these things, beneath the headline is normally the underlying message that consumption to excess is not good but the odd one is good for you.

I like the Michael Pollen quote:

"Eat food. Not too much. Mostly plants"
Red Rover - on 03 Feb 2014
In reply to Heike:

I'm a chemist so not entierly uninformed on this kind of thing and apart from the sugar hit (there are much worse things) I cant see how a smoothie can be bad for you. The cellulose thing isnt true the body is incapable of breaking it down anyway, thats why we cant eat grass. I cant see how blending it will change the chemical composition, which is what makes a food good or bad. The blades of the blender are huge compared to the molecules in the food (even compared to the massive fibre polymers), theres no way it will have an effect. Consider blending just artificial chewing. When it comes to nutrition theres a lot of information out there on the internet thats not based on any kind of science at all. I think the slight negative of the sugar is outweighed by the positive of the vitamins that wouldnt otherwise be eaten.
graeme jackson - on 03 Feb 2014
In reply to Tall Clare:
> and nor is soy, especially for boys (all that oestrogen)

That explains the moobs then

ripper - on 03 Feb 2014
In reply to Heike:

surely the big difference is not between fruit and smoothies but between fruit and juices. Juices are produced by squishing and/or centrifuging and the leftover pulp (containing, I assume, all the fibre) is discarded. In a smoothie - a homemade one at least - the whole lot is consumed. I've even been to known to add unpeeled banana to mine (although I tend to think the risk of chemicals on the peel outweighs any benefit). I also add oats and flax seeds to mine, but that's another matter...
felt - on 03 Feb 2014
In reply to ripper:

> surely the big difference is not between fruit and smoothies but between fruit and juices.

The big difference is between fruit and fruit. 1. Fruit is now bred to be more palatable, i.e. breeders select for high sugar content. Taste your modern Braeburns, Galas etc, quite a different beast from the sourness you got with traditional English apples. So, where poss., avoid anything but scabby fruit from the most ancient orchards, preferably walled and tended by celibate monks from a silent order, etc. 2. Anything of non-temperate origins, eg pineapple, mangoes, bananas, is less good than temperate fruits, eg apples, pears, plums. 3. Berries are best.

At least that's how I understand it.
deepsoup - on 03 Feb 2014
In reply to felt:
> So, where poss., avoid anything but scabby fruit from the most ancient orchards, preferably walled and tended by celibate monks from a silent order, etc.

Nah. Best tended by grumpy old gits with a big scary dog, and scrumped. Best exercise I ever got as a kid. ;o)
Kimono - on 03 Feb 2014
In reply to Heike:

Oh for god's sake, just eat food…eat some good stuff, eat some junk, eat lots of vegetables, don't eat too much of one thing….do some exercise.
Its really not so difficult.

Oh yes, and try to remember that we will all die at some point!
abseil on 04 Feb 2014
In reply to Kimono:

> Oh yes, and try to remember that we will all die at some point!

What???????????!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
IainRUK - on 04 Feb 2014
In reply to Dauphin:

> Most of the cellulose is in cell walls AFAI remember from 'A' level biology so whizzing it in a blender isn't going to too much damage. Sticking it in centrifuge probably would though.

> D

I'd have thought that.. I'd be amazed if a quick blend was enough.
ByEek - on 04 Feb 2014
In reply to felt:

So basically, what you are saying is avoid fruit and stick to McDonalds?

Sorry, but all this "fruit is bad for you" nonsense it utter carp. Sure, if you eat nothing but fruit, your teeth will rot and your stomach will implode, but in moderation as part of a balanced diet...

I will bet your left arm that the eejits spouting this rubbish are Gillian McKeith's mates who write for Hello magazine and the Daily Express.
felt - on 04 Feb 2014
In reply to ByEek:

Yes, that's right. Burgers, Coke and sweeties are best.
Shani - on 04 Feb 2014
In reply to Heike:

Whilst I'd recommend eating whole fruit rather than smoothies (and definitely over juicing), there is a lot of sugar and fructose alarmism around at the moment.

Here's something to redress the balance:

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3849418/
http://advances.nutrition.org/content/4/2/236.long

If you are eating 'real'/whole foods then there's little to worry about.
Juicefree - on 04 Feb 2014
In reply to Heike:

Why don't you add green's to the smoothie? Like spinach for instance? Also perhaps some ginger?

TheDrunkenBakers - on 04 Feb 2014
In reply to Heike:

So it seems that folks are getting knickers in a knot about all this.

If you need to get 5 a day, eat a couple of pieces of fruit and a couple of pieces of veg, which mostly contain lower levels of sugar. Eat good lean meat and fish and avoid crappy processed food, refined carbs etc. It wont be much fun but it will most certainly be good for you.
Philip on 04 Feb 2014
I think it just comes down to ease of drinking.


I think I have 6 cups of tea, 1 squash, 2 water, 1 fruit juice in a day.

If I switched 1 tea, 1 squash and 1 juice for 3 glasses of smoothie (one carton of Innocent for example) - something that would be considered high but not extreme - I would consume 150% of the RDA sugar just from the smoothies. So just one glass (250ml) would give me 50% of my RDA.

I'd probably still want an apple with my lunch, and a piece of fruit in the evening, even though I'd have had:

3 1/2 Pressed Apples
21 Pressed Red and White Grapes
1 Mashed Banana
6 Crushed Strawberries
14 Crushed Cherries

Which is quite a bit of fruit!



Joe G - on 04 Feb 2014
In reply to Juicefree:

> Also perhaps some ginger?

Aye, that's whit you want in your smoothie, a boattle o ginger, a melted mars bar and plenty o voddy. Mair healthy than a that fruit...

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