We have been hearing for ages that fruits and vegetables are indispensable in order to maintain our health. They provide us with copious amounts of minerals, antioxidants and are flooded with vitamins. Especially with the outbreak of pandemics, people have become vigilant about the food they eat and the effect it has on their immunity. People are now stressing about vegan diets and fruits with their abundant amount of antioxidants offer much-needed immunity. But is it OK to eat any combination of the fruits? It is the best idea to eat the seasonal fruits as and when they are available. But eating the wrong combination of fruits can cause more harm than good.
We all think that a bowl of fresh fruits and vegetables is the best kind of meal one can have. We chop the fruits and vegetables in our refrigerator, squeeze a lime, add a dash of salt, and believe that we are good to go. But this isn’t the right way. First of all, we should never mix fruits with vegetables. In fact, we should never combine certain fruits with each other. The whole idea here is about the speed of digestion of different fruits and vegetables. Many combinations that we use to make our delicious fruit salads, mixed fruit juices, faloodas, perhaps hinder the optimal digestion and assimilation of the nutrients, which ultimately fails the sole purpose of eating the fruits.
Pro tips for avoiding wrong combinations and their adverse effects:
Fruits and vegetables are to be eaten separately: Fruits have a quicker pace of digestion and in fact, nutritionists opine that they are partially digested by the time they reach the stomach, which is not the case with vegetables. Also, fruits have more sugar content, which can hinder the digestive process of vegetables.
For the same reason, orange with carrot should not be mixed as they may cause heartburn, excess bile reflux and kidney damage.
Melons with other fruits: Melons never pair up with other fruits. They belong to the family cucurbitaceae which have this peculiar character. This is because they digest faster than most other fruits owing to their high water content. Avoid mixing your watermelons, muskmelons, cantaloupe, and honeydews with other fruits.
Starchy fruits with high protein foods: Fruits like green bananas and plantains are starchy in nature. We should never mix them with high-protein fruits and vegetables such as raisins, guava, spinach, and broccoli. They hinder the digestion of each other as proteins and starchy foods are digested in acidic and alkaline mediums respectively. Also, we should not mix acidic fruits such as grapefruits, strawberries, oranges, and lemons with sweet fruits such as bananas, raisins, mangoes, papayas. Some studies claim that: the combination of banana and guava can increase your chances of nausea, acidosis, and headaches; papaya and lemon together can be the reason for anemia and hemoglobin imbalance.
Mixing milk with fruits: Milk is a complete food. Combining milk with starchy or acid fruits can hinder its digestion and result in numerous problems. Consuming milk cereals with acidic fruits like oranges, strawberries causes indigestion as the acid in fruits destroys the enzymes responsible for the digestion of the cereals. When we have milk with pineapple, the bromelain in pineapple forms a complex with milk and paves way for problems like stomach ache, gas, nausea, and headache. Similarly, milk with bananas stimulates the production of toxins which is harmful especially for children.
So the next time you crave a milkshake, make sure to add a pinch of cinnamon or nutmeg to minimize the damage to your digestive system. To summarize, eating a whole lot of fruits doesn’t always benefit us. There are some combinations that must be avoided. Fruits should be categorized based on their acidity and digestibility. Melons must be eaten alone, berries can be eaten along with grapes, and tropical fruits like mango, papaya, and sapota can be eaten together. It is a good idea to avoid combining fruits with meat, dairy, or other foods which take longer to digest. Ideally, fruits are to be eaten either on an empty stomach or in between the meals and never along with the meals. Smart picking of the fruits and including them at the right time in our diet can help to keep the health issues at a bay.