My son loves raisin. I understand that it's a fruit and the sugar content, but I never hear anyone talk about them. Are raisins avoided for some reason I am unaware of?
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Are raisins avoided for some reason I am unaware of?
Raisins should be avoided because they have astronomically high sugar levels, and half of that sugar is fructose. Fructose is toxic. The body can dispose of it safely in small amounts but larger amounts are harmful.
Raisins have more sugar for their weight than six out of six candy bars that I just looked up: Almond Joy, Krakel, Reeses, Mounds, Twizzlers, or Mr. Goodbar.
The carbs in starch and carbs in raisins are not the same. Starch (obtained from foods like potatoes and sweet potatoes) breaks down into glucose, which is healthy for us. Raisins break down into a mixture of glucose and fructose. Fructose is not healthy for us.
My Dentist refers to raisins as "Dental Napalm"
Not only are they boluses of sugar, but they (and other dried fruits, including fruit roll-ups) cling to the teeth way more than most other sugar sources. My children's dentist routinely advocates against them.
They probably should be treated like any other dried fruit..only for very active people with no insulin issues, and enjoyed in small amounts.
I don't think they are avoided any more than any other type of dried fruit. In fact, last week they were suggested as a great, easily carried snack for a diabetic to carry around, just in case of a needed sugar boost. I can't find the thread now, of course.
The sugar is the main concern.
As an alternative, I would suggest dried plums (aka prunes). They have a significantly lower glycemic load, and any impact they have will be more moderate. They tend to be preserved with potassium.... so I don't really think that is an issue.
Although I would not be to concerned with raisins if your being moderate.
I had to take the two grandkids, 7 and 10 to an appointment with me as I was babysitting and no one else was available. Unbeknown to me they brought along a zip lock bag of raisins for a "snack" (how I hate that word), anyway after about half an hour of steadily increasing volume they were off their trees! Virtually uncontrollable, boy was I glad to get home and give them back to their mother who just shrugged and said, "yeah, they do that". Ug, wouldn't have them in the house! (The rasins, not the GK's)
If you are going to buy raisins or other dried fruit, best to look for the type with no added sugar. Dried fruit also have sulfates in them as a preservative. I'm not sure if the ones with added sugar do too.
I'd buy the most natural version I can find and keep it down to an occasional treat.
The only reason to avoid them is that gram for gram they are just about pure sugar. So it's ridiculously easy to throw off your macronutrient ratios by eating raisins.
I would treat them just as any other fruit, and look at the numbers. Of course, I think it all depends on what type of paleo you are. If youre low-carb plaeo, I would cut them out completely, they really are just little balls of sugar. However, if you are allowing yourself some natural carbs, potatoes and frutis and such, then they would seem fine.
When my nephew was about 4 or 5 he went a long period, like almost a year, where almost the only thing he ate was raisins and milk. He was a picky eater (still is today at age 19) but this was verging on an eating disorder.
Part of the problem was that raisins were viewed as "healthy" so his parents were willing to give them to him all the time, but what they were doing was like giving beer to a drunkard. Raisins do have some nutrients but as others have noted they are sugar bombs, more sugary than candy, and it's all fructose, which in my opinion is among the worst sugars. Kids love them because they're sweet but they spoil their appetite and they may be slower to develop a taste for other foods.
I think raisins are better as a dessert than a "snack". The agricultural companies want you to believe that they're a snack and they package them in cute little boxes so you can more readily feed them to kids but I would not be fooled.
They add HUGE amounts of added sugar in them to.
I'd be less worried about the sugar/fructose content and more about the vegetable oil that is often added to them. I don't think I've ever come across a packet of raisins without this added ingredient!
As a sugar addict I have often abused raisins - probably no one on the planet can eat as many as I can at one sitting, sadly.
I was looking up the fructose content on raisins and found your site. I mix raisins and kefir from raw goats milk in mason jars to help absorb some of the sugar. I haven't seen any research on this as to how effective it is. I'm sure the longer the fermenting process is allowed the better but again haven't found any data on that either. I keep the jars in the frig which slows the fermenting process. Based on the info here it looks like raisins may be better off avoided altogether. I eat kefired raisins just because I enjoy them.
It's specific to your body needs I would say.
IF your not diabetic and your specific diet allows for a higher fructose count than say, somebody who is trying to loose weight, I'd say go for it. Although try to get the ones with no sugar or preservatives added.
My personal favorite spin on Ants on the Log, 3 inch slices of celery covered with almond butter and topped with a minimal amount of raisins. The tasty dried grapes are key, don't sacrifice deliciousness.