When I first started personal training, the director of training at the gym I worked gave us guidelines on what diet we should give our clients. One of those guidelines was that our clients should not eat any fruit after 6pm. The sugar gets converted to fat since we aren’t as active at night, he reasoned.
I was skeptical. After all I always though fruit was healthy and I certainly hadn’t experienced any negative effects from eating fruit at night as long as it fit into my macros.
Turns out there is not much science behind my fitness director’s claims. Fruit has sugar, but since the natural sugar in fruit is accompanied by fiber, there will not be a huge spike in insulin or blood sugar. This means the sugar in (whole) fruit as opposed to the sugar in a soft drink will be less likely to be stored as fat. Fruit also has a high nutrient and water content which helps with satiety, and can keep you feeling fuller longer.
That said, you CAN eat too much fruit. Calories are important too and if you are eating too many calories from fruit, it WILL lead to fat gains. However, I see no reason for an arbitrary cut off time for fruit. Fruit can be a healthy snack anytime a day as long as you are keeping total macros and calories in mind.
If you are interested in finding out your target calorie and macro range I have created a simple, free calculator. Check it out!