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5-10 servings of fruits a day keeps the diseases at bay

Thursday, 13 March 2014 - 12:59pm IST | Agency: dna

Going back in time of stone age, food meant gift from trees. The diet mainly consisted of fruits, before fire was discovered and the practice of cooking came into play. Fruits are rich in fibre and a high dose of fruits is always welcomed by the body. It's the healthiest snack for growling tummies. One should always prefer consuming fruits while it is fresh, to absorb the nutrients. A good intake of fruits assures an immunity build up and protection from diseases. One must have five to 10 servings of fruits a day, to keep any kind of illness at bay.

Considering fruits are handy, we often tend to neglect washing of the fruit thoroughly. Washing ought to be the primary step to take before consuming the fruit. Fresh looking fruits also have a chemical layer. It's a common practice of soaking fruits in salt water prior to munching. Nidhi Bhuchar, a Vashi resident says, "I make it a point to wash fruits with cold water to remove microbes" It's always better to have a limited stock of fruits at home, as they have short shelf life, also the health benefiting properties of fruits decline with time. To keep the fruit fresh you can always store it in zip pouches.

There are beliefs that fruits should be consumed on empty stomach and it's bad to have a fruit after meals. But nutrutionist Lavanya Bachwal debunks the myth, "Fruits are ideally can be eaten at anytime of the day. But it's preferable that fruits are eaten on a empty stomach as most of the fruits help neutralize the acidic pH of the stomach and prevent episodes of severe acidity" A whole fruit is always one up over fruit juices. As the fruit will give you a feeling of fullness and make you abstain from binge eating. One can also take to a fruit diet to detoxify the body, but only after medical consultation.

Fruits are a great source of energy and its always better to munch on them, rather than relying on packaged small bites. Also one can indulge in sinful fruit salad, to keep it fit.
Nutritionist Lavanya Bachwal lists benefits of a few fruits:

Apple: High on soluble fibre, low in calories, enhances dental hygiene and contains a photochemical called Quercetin that helps prevent heart disease and cancer.
Banana: Excellent source of Potassium making it an ideal fruit for consumption by a hypertensive patient. Also a very good source of Vit B6, folate and fibre.

Grapefruit: Available in pink and red varieties, are excellent sources of Vitamin C, beta carotene and lycopene. All of which are powerful anti-oxidants that protect against cancer and heart diseases.

Orange: Low in calories, good source of Potassium, thiamine and folate and high in pectin a soluble dietary fibre that helps regulate blood cholesterol levels.

Strawberry: Notably good source of Vitamin C, Folate and potassium. It's low in calories, high in fibre which helps prevents constipation and it is also high in Bioflavonoids that may help prevent cancer.

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