Having dessert after dinner is an honoured tradition, and one that most modern people accept with little rhyme or reason. I know I've never failed to be tempted by a dish of some salted caramel gelato or some delightful devil's cake even before I've had my dinner, and as a general rule, if there's any mention of dessert I'm automatically and immediately hooked. 

But after giving in, I regret even having dessert in the first place. I feel like I have to spend at least a few hours at the gym just to make up for having something sweet during my day.

The concept of dessert in itself never made sense to me–it's a part of our daily routines even as we've become more health conscious as a species. I couldn't help but wonder whose idea dessert was in the first place, which led me to an answer that completely changed my lifestyle of eating.

strawberry, berry, sweet
Torey Walsh

Although we view fruit as a necessary part of the USDA food pyramid, in ancient times people saw it quite differently. They saw fruit as a gift from Mother Earth. Fruits are high in sugar too, believe it or not. A banana has 14 grams of sugar—the same amount as three Oreos. For the ancient Romans, fruit was dessert.

So what’s the big difference? Why does ice cream leave us feeling guilty but there's no self-hatred associated with fruit? It's because most of our desserts are simple sugars, whereas fruits are complex and contain a lot of fibre. Consequently, it takes a lot longer for insulin to break the sugars in fruits down, leaving you feeling full for longer. 

Katie Walsh

Having a little trouble convincing yourself that fruit will satisfy your dessert cravings? Try transforming your last meal of the day.

Try making ice cream solely out of only bananas. It’s how I kicked my simple sugars dessert habit. It may sound like another one of those replacements that ends up tasting nothing like the real thing, but even I managed to fool my little siblings with it.  

Katie Walsh

Want to increase your fruit intake but still throw some chocolate in the mix? Go for it. My two favourite ingredients to add are Nutella and Oreos. Make the ice cream exactly how you like it, all while knowing you stuck to a healthy diet and can go to bed with a full stomach and a happy heart.