Healthy Eating

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The Healthiest Fruits Explained by BistroMD

All fruits naturally contain a sugar called fructose, and a high consumption of fructose can lead to weight gain. Learn about the best fruits and the worst fruits to eat on a weight loss diet so that you can incorporate the healthiest fruits into your diet.

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First and foremost, fruit is packed with fiber, antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals. But there can be too much of a good thing.

All fruits naturally contain a sugar called fructose, and a high consumption of fructose can lead to weight gain. That being said, certain fruits are more nutrient-dense and lower in fructose than other fruits.

Learn about the best fruits to eat while losing weight and achieving overall health!

Which Are the Healthiest Fruits?

BistroMD recommends individuals attempting to lose weight limit their intake of fruit to about one serving per day. Pairing with a balanced meal or snack can also lessen the impact of fructose on blood sugar levels.

But choosing which single, nutrient-dense fruit to eat in a given day can be tricky. The best fruits to eat include, but are not limited to, the ones detailed below.

Truly, their robust nutrient profile accompanies their fructose content!

1. Blueberries

Blueberries considered low-glycemic foods because consuming them has a relatively low impact on your blood sugar. The berries are also are a good source of dietary fiber, vitamins C and K, manganese, and copper.

Thanks to their lavish nutrient profile, the benefits of blueberries include supporting bowel regularity, fighting against cancer, and promoting heart health.

There is also compelling evidence regarding blueberries for weight loss. They may influence genes that control fat burning and storing, helping reduce belly fat and even lower cholesterol.

How to Enjoy Blueberries: For a protein-packed snack, add ½ cup of blueberries to about 6 ounces of Greek yogurt. Also guiltlessly indulge on a healthy blueberry cheesecake or sip on a refreshing fizzy blueberry mint drink.

2. Raspberries

This mid-summer fruit offers more than just a pleasant, sweet taste. One cup of raspberries offers a whopping 8 grams of fiber, mostly in soluble fiber form. Raspberries also provide a large amount of vitamins C, E, and K, manganese, folate, iron, and potassium.

Raspberries are considerably known for their polyphenol and anthocyanin content, providing raspberries their rich and vibrant color. They also contain ellagic acid, an antioxidant that has shown anti-cancer properties.

Diabetes management, eye protection, and anti-aging are other properties and benefits of raspberries.

How to Enjoy Raspberries: Raspberries are enjoyable on their own, but can be mixed into cereal or yogurt, too. They also offer natural sweetness and nutrients to this invigorating peach, raspberry, and basil protein smoothie.

3. Blackberries

Blackberries are high in fiber and a good source of vitamin C. They also are low in calorie, carbohydrate, and provide an average of 5 grams of sugar per one cup. And truly, these qualities make berries some of the best fruits for weight loss.

Also like the other berry varieties, the rich color of blackberries confirms high antioxidant levels.

What's more, Driscoll's reports fresh blackberries were recently identified as a top cancer fighter. They may also protect the brain from Alzheimer’s disease and dementia.

How to Enjoy Blackberries: The sweet, yet tart berries complement a wide variety of recipes. Options include a blackberry spinach salad, blackberry pork tenderloin, and the no other blackberry cobbler.

4. Strawberries

Strawberries are not only prime, summertime sweets, but are chock-full of fiber, folate, potassium, vitamin C, and other essential nutrients. Their high phenolic acid content confers not only their vibrant color, but helps manage blood sugar.

Strawberries are also high in the chemicals anthocyanins and ellagic acid. Studies show consuming berries that contain these bioactive compounds may have potential to protect against cancer. They may also aid in the prevention of inflammatory disorders and cardiovascular diseases.

How to Enjoy Strawberries: A refreshing strawberry and spinach salad is just one of the few delicious ideas for strawberry season. This healthy, guilt-free strawberry gelato recipe can also cure any sweet tooth while being laden in nutrients!

5. Lemons

When life gives you lemons, you turn them into health benefits! And the citrus fruit and its juice off many… (Even the smell can awaken the senses!)

According to a study published in the Journal of Nutrition and Metabolism, daily lemon intake may improve blood pressure. Its juice also lends some notable benefits. Other evidence suggests lemon extract warrants potential and future use to treat breast cancer.

Noteworthy benefits of lemon juice include fat loss, boosted immunity, dry mouth and sore throat relief, amongst several others.

How to Enjoy Lemons: Not all can handle the sourness of a plain lemon. And that is okay! There are numerous and various lemon recipes to prepare, including both savory and sweet options.

6. Guavas

Guava is a tropical fruit supplying dietary fiber, potassium, folate, and some fat-soluble vitamins. The guava leaves are also suppliers of powerful antioxidants.

But the taste is not the only favored characteristic of guava. The fruit may also benefit a number of health conditions, including diabetes and high blood pressure.

How to Enjoy Guavas: The sweet and tangy flesh of ripe guava makes them enjoyable on their own. However, guavas are also often prepared into beverages, jellies, syrups, and other food products.

7. Cranberries

Cranberries are low in sugar and calories and boast with beneficial nutrients. The American cranberries and health benefits has been an evolving story of 25 years!

Cranberries and its juice are mostly noted for its role in fighting urinary tract infections (UTIs). The anthocyanins, procyanidins, and flavanols in cranberries were all documented to have potential effects on cancer prevention.

The nutrient-dense cranberry also shows promise in maintaining digestive health and protecting from heart disease.

How to Enjoy Cranberries: Make this maple cranberry orange yogurt parfait for a light breakfast, snack, or dessert option.

What Fruits Should I Eat in Moderation?

No fruits should be considered forbidden fruits. However, there are additional considerations when selecting fruits and related products. These include fruit juices, ripened fruits, and dried fruits.

• Fruit Juices: First and foremost, fruits should be ultimately be consumed in their whole form rather than as a juice. Juices are often concentrated with additional sugars and lack fiber.

A greater consumption of fruit juice is associated with a higher risk of weight gain and type 2 diabetes. If deciding to drink a glass of juice, stick to a 4-ounce serving.

• Ripened Fruits: The ripening process can also influence sugar content. Take, for instance, a banana. As it ripens, it becomes less starchy and apparently more naturally sweet.

Sweeter, more ripened fruits are often more readily absorbed. This can cause greater spikes in blood sugar, especially if consumed without a protein or fat source.

• Dried Fruits: Dried fruits are concentrated with calories and sugar and raisins are a great example of this. A ¼ cup of raisins contains 130 calories and are primarily a carb source, supplying 31 grams of total carbohydrate.

On the other hand, you can enjoy 1.5 cups of grapes for only 90 calories and 24 grams of carb! These principles serve true for other dried fruits, including dried cranberries or "Craisins."

Ultimately, the most importance for enjoying fruit is doing so in moderation. Eating with a protein-based snack or balanced meal can also deter the impact of fructose on blood sugars.

Written By Sydney Lappe, MS, RDN. Published on December 13, 2015. Updated on April 03, 2019.

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