Does Fruitarian diet work?

The Fruit Only Diet aka fruitarian diet involves eating only raw fruits (and maybe SOME nuts and seeds) for either weeks or some months at a time. 

This diet is very popular on social media; if you are active on instagram you may have seen vloggers, bloggers and Instagrammers post content with the #fruitarian hashtag.

Before we proceed to see if this diet works or not, we need to know Why has this diet become so popular?

Well! Because people who have tried it claim that the diet improved digestion, caused weight loss, led to better hydration and ofc, one of my least favourite nutrition/health-buzzword – helped with detoxification. I have made a video about detox that has angered full time detoxers, do check it out right here. Also, fruit only diet has been part of  ritual fasting in India for a very long time, however, it is usually practiced for a day or two or at most for approximately a week ( think navaratri). And as I have said in my videos before, one time change in diet does not affect your overall health.

Ok getting back to the main point, are there truly any advantages to eating ONLY fruits? We know that fruits are GREAT for health so eating just fruit should be great, right? 

WELL some fruit is great, too much is not necessarily better, and a fruitarian diet is not ideal for your health. Lets have a look at a few reasons why:

Reason number 1.

It is missing important nutrients – sure, fruits are full of fiber, vitamins and minerals and even antioxidants. Most importantly, they contain sugar which acts a source of energy for the body and keep us fueled and going. 

So whats missing? 

For starters, fruits are almost completely absent in protein and we need protein for muscle building, for muscle repair and for growth. 

We also need protein to make enzymes and hormones, which are the chemicals that parts of our bodies use to work and communicate with each other.

Fruits are also not a significant source of fat and we need different kinds of fat for the health of our brain, immune system and reproductive system. Girls, the hormones that regulate your period are made from fat! And you really dont want to mess with these.

In fact, fat is one of the raw materials that makes up every single cell in your body so you need fat! And fruits cant and wont give you fat

And when you don’t get fat and protein, you’re automatically at risk for deficiency of nutrients like Vitamin B12, Vitamin D, Calcium and Iron to name a few.

Reason number 2.

It is a restrictive diet – you cant sustain this diet in the long run because, as discussed above, it is missing very important nutrients. 

It may give you “results” in the short run but it’s almost impossible to maintain these benefits if you don’t know how to balance your meals eventually. This cannot be a lifestyle that you can stick to and eventually it can hamper your overall relationship with food

Reason number 3.

Too few calories – remember that even though fruit has sugar, it also has a lot of fiber. Fiber makes you feel full and you might not be able to eat as much fruit as your body needs to meet its daily energy requirements. For example, say your body needs 2000 calories daily – its really really hard to get all of this just from fruit!

And when you don’t get enough calories from your food, your body will break down muscles to supply this deficit – and we definitely don’t want that!

And reason number 4.

Risk of health issues – a fruit only diet may not be ideal for people with blood sugar regulation issues like people with diabetes, prediabetes and even pcos. In fact, consuming enough protein and fat makes up a very major part of the management of these conditions.

So while eating fruits is really great for you, please don’t ONLY eat fruits. You wont get all the nutrients that your body needs and you are setting yourself up for malnutrition and many nutrient deficiencies.

If you are following such a diet for weight loss purposes, know that weight loss doesn’t equal health gain and losing weight though THIS pattern of eating will truly do nothing for your health. I would highly recommend that you consult a doctor or a dietician if you are about to embark on one of these fruit only diets. 

Instead focus on a balanced eating pattern, get in regular sleep and exercise, and work with a dietitian to figure what kind of eating pattern will best suit your needs without compromising your health.

Leave a Reply