If you are following a low-carb diet, you’ll want to stick to low-sugar fruits. Berries are low in sugar and high in many nutrients.
If you follow a low-carb diet or are living with diabetes, you may have a complicated relationship with fruit. You may have heard you don’t need to worry about how much sugar is in fruit because it is considered natural sugar. However, the truth is that it depends.
The Natural Sugar in Fruit
Fruits contain many nutrients, and if you’re going to be eating sugar it’s better to have some great nutrients to go with it!
The good news is that the fruits lowest in sugar have some of the highest nutritional values, including antioxidants and other phytonutrients. On the other hand, some people digest and process sugar better than others. If you are someone who responds well to a low-carb diet, it pays to be careful.
Fruit and Low-Carb Diets
The FDA recommends for adults to eat 2 cups of fruit per day. How much fruits you eat, may differ if you are following a specific low-carb diet plan. Some of the popular low-carb diet plans differ, based on whether they consider glycemic index or glycemic load (South Beach, Zone); while others just look at the amount of carbohydrate (Atkins, Protein Power). Other diets (Atkins, South Beach) don’t allow fruit at all in the first phase. Not all low-carb diets limit fruit, however. Diets like the Paleo diet, Whole30, and even Weight Watchers (although it’s not necessarily a low-carb diet) do not place a limit on fruit.
In general, if you are following a low-carb diet, you should try and eat fruits that are low in sugar. When consulting the list below, which ranks fruit based on sugar content, keep in mind that some values are per cup while others are per whole fruit.
Fruits Low in Sugar (Low-Carb Fruits)
Lime: 1.1 grams of sugar per fruit
Rhubarb: 1.3 grams of sugar per cup
Lemon: 1.5 grams of sugar per fruit
Apricots: 3.2 grams of sugar per small apricot
Cranberries: 4 grams of sugar per cup
Guavas: 4.9 grams of sugar per fruit
Raspberries: 5 grams of sugar per cup
Kiwifruit: 6 grams of sugar per kiwi
Fruits Containing Low to Medium Levels of Sugar
Blackberries: 7 grams of sugar per cup
Strawberries: 7 grams of sugar per cup
Figs: 8 grams of sugar per medium fig
Grapefruit: 8 grams of sugar per grapefruit half
Cantaloupes: 8 grams of sugar per large wedge
Tangerines: 9 grams of sugar per medium tangerine
Nectarines: 11.3 grams of sugar in one small nectarine
Papaya: 12 grams of sugar in one small papaya
Oranges: 12 grams of sugar in a medium orange
Honeydew: 13 grams of sugar per wedge
Cherries: 13 grams of sugar per cup
Peaches: 13 grams of sugar per medium peach
Blueberries: 15 grams of sugar per cup
Grapes: 15 grams of sugar per cup
Fruits Containing High to Very High Levels of Sugar
Pineapple: 16 grams of fruit per slice
Pears: 17 grams of sugar per medium pear
Bananas: 17 grams of sugar per large banana
Watermelon: 18 grams of sugar per wedge
Apples: 19 grams of sugar in a small apple
Pomegranates: 39 grams of sugar per pomegranate
Mangos: 46 grams of sugar per fruit
Prunes: 66 grams of sugar per cup
Raisins: 86 grams of sugar per cup
Dates: 93 grams of sugar per cup
Source: Very well
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