Cooked fruits may be eaten with any meal, but usually when fruit is eaten for special dietetic purposes its effect is always more pronounced if taken alone, either at the commencement of meals or, better, between them. One often observes patients who can obtain no laxative effect from apples, figs and other fruit eaten as dessert, but which taken at night into an empty stomach or an hour before breakfast, with a glass or two of cold water, has a very pronounced favourable influence upon the bowels.

The poorest time for eating fruit is at the conclusion of a very hearty dinner at which considerable variety of food has already been consumed. Fruit in general is less wholesome when eaten out of its natural season. All fruits, such as berries, the seeds of which are eaten, are much less liable to produce intestinal irritation if taken with bread or other bulky starchy food. Raw fruit unless eaten at once after picking should be well washed. The skin and seeds of the larger fruits and of grapes are quite indigestible.