SPRINGFIELD, MA (WGGB/WSHM) -- It's been over a month since we've made our New Year's resolutions. How are yours going?
If losing weight is on your 'to do' list, of course, there are dozens of diets out there to choose from.
One circulating right now is eating not just fruit, but the whole enchalada: the peel, rind, everything.
The latest diet trend may seem rather harry. Eating an entire kiwi - brown fuzzy stuff and all. Eating a whole banana - peel and all, and so on.
The idea: the peel, skin, or rind is packed with additional nutrients and fiber.
The FDA said banana peels, for example, have 78 additional milligrams of potassium and three additional grams of fiber.
A recent study shows eating the skin of a kiwi triples the fiber intake compared to just eating the tasty green inside.
Orange peels are also fiber-rich. Watermelon rinds too. You get the idea.
Knowing that and actually eating it can be a tough pill, or peel, to swallow for some.
"It's helpful to learn how to use the whole fruit. It really adds fun recipes and expands your tastebuds, but when it comes to weight loss, not so much," said Big Y registered dietitian and nutritionist Carrie Taylor.
The idea is all that fiber can reduce your appetite by slowing the movement of food through your gut.
Taylor told Western Mass News that eating the whole fruit accomplishes many things, but the jury is out on weight loss.
"Peels and rinds definitely have added nutrition, so if you're consuming them, baking them, sautéing them, candying them, what have you, yes, you're going to get more of those nutrients, but is it necessary? No. Is it going to help with food waste? Absolutely. Does it open the door to new food recipes? Absolutely, so it can be fun. Not necessary, but fun," Taylor noted.
So we wanted to try for ourselves. We chopped up a banana peel, a whole kiwi, and slices of orange, added almond milk and a no-sugar added frozen fruit and veggie mix.
We then pureed everything as best we could, then we enlisted Western Mass News staffer Gary to taste.
A little chunky, a little labor intensive, but not horrible. As a weight loss option? Back to our dietition and nutritionist.
"It's definitely a provocative story, right? Like 'Oh, a secret, you can lose weight.' A lot of people, though, could take it as one more barrier to fruits and vegetables. It's one thing to get people to eat enough fruits and vegetables, and now to say, ok, take it one step further. Let's start eating the peels and the rinds that you're not really comfortable with. It doesn't have to be that complex," Taylor added.
So what will help with weight loss?
"It's not sexy, it's not provocative, but it's true. You want a plate balanced in fruits and vegetables, lean protein sources like chicken and fish, as well as a whole grain like brown rice or quinoa, or a whole wheat pasta and a serving from the dairy group. Whether you choose dairy or you choose something like a soy protein," Taylor said.
Whole or peeled, Talyor suggested a diet going back to basics and full of color is the best start..
"The one-two punch for weight management. healthy eating, daily activity," Taylor said.