You are using an older browser version. Please use a supported version for the best MSN experience.

Fruitarianism: What happens when you eat nothing but raw fruit – and why do people do it?

The Independent logo The Independent 8/03/2017 Rachel Hosie
© Provided by Independent Print Limited

Fruitarianism is not a diet, but a way of life. It’s not about losing weight or detoxing - it’s a lifestyle.

As someone who’s tried it out, however, I can say that I also think it’s bonkers.

Fruitarianism involves - as its name would suggest - eating nothing but fruit (with a sprinkling of nuts and seeds thrown in).

People do it to different degrees, but the general rule is that your diet should consist of at least 75% raw fruit (by weight), and 25% nuts and seeds. It’s considered a subset of raw veganism. Yikes.

Most famously, the late Apple CEO Steve Jobs spent some time as a fruitarian (he claimed it fuelled his creativity). But when actor Ashton Kutcher tried to follow a fruitarian diet for a month before playing Jobs in a film, he ended up in hospital.

However it’s perhaps on Instagram where the lifestyle is most visible. There are just under 475,000 Instagram posts with the hashtag #fruitarian - the photos mainly feature young, lithe women, fruit-topped smoothie bowls and beautiful fruit platters. It’s a lifestyle that looks healthy and glamorous.

Now I really like fruit, so even though I never thought I could be fruitarian for life (because pizza and burgers and cake), I thought I could easily give it a go for a week.

But reader, I was wrong.

I managed three days as a fruitarian and had to stop because I was feeling so ill.

Get. In. My. Belly. 🍉🍓 fruit fruit fruit

A post shared by Ivycarnegie (@ivycarnegie) on

Day 2

I started the day with a smoothie, a bowlful of berries and half an avocado. But by mid-morning I was hungry again (is there something wrong with me?), so I had another smoothie. My tummy really hurt. I had some seeds.

At lunchtime I had an avocado and my stomach was seriously painful afterwards. I was a day and a half in and my body was not happy. I felt bloated, gassy (sorry) and lightheaded.

I had another fruit and nut bar, a pear and a banana over the course of the afternoon, but by the time evening came, I really wanted a pizza. That evening I couldn’t face socialising and having to resist delicious things that weren’t fruit so flaked on my evening plans and went home. Fruitarianism is not sociable.
I decided to try and trick my body into thinking it was eating something other than fruit by making ‘pancakes’ that consisted simply of mashed banana, peanut butter, flaxmeal and a pinch of cinnamon.

They were genuinely delicious and felt substantial. Would eat again. I went to bed feeling incredibly bloated - I genuinely thought I could pass for six months pregnant.

Day 3

I woke up with a headache which didn’t go away all morning.

I ate much the same things that I’d eaten for the past two days, but I was not enjoying it and my body was not happy.

I was in serious pain.

That evening I threw in the towel and had a bowlful of pasta with veggies. Needless to say, it tasted fantastic.

More from The Independent

The Independent
The Independent
image beaconimage beaconimage beacon