Fresh fruit. Summer time is marked by the strawberry stands being open, the peaches being ripened and fruit salad on the spread at every event. All year round we have apples, bananas, and oranges. There are a number of reasons this refreshing snack is good for you. These colorful choices are full of vitamins and minerals. They can also help reduce the risk of many diseases and help lower blood pressure. This means that fruit helps with the maintenance of our bodies.
By Megan Johnson McCullough
But there’s a problem….Sugar, sugar, sugar.
Fruit has sugar. Yes, the sugar in fruit is natural, but sugar is just sugar in that body of yours. Fructose (another name for the sugar in fruit) is harmful to your metabolism. When it comes to the sugar in fruit, it’s really about the amount you are consuming.
For example, an apple has about 12 grams of sugar compared to 40 grams of sugar in one soda. So it would take 3 apples to have the same amount of sugar as one soda. The more informed you are the better, so let’s talk about the sugar in fruit with regards to the highest and the lowest options per serving.
Here are the fruits with the most sugar:
- Mangos – 1 mango = 45 grams
- Grapes – 1 cup = 23 grams (thought to consider for wine consumers)
- Cherries – 1 cup = 18 grams
- Pears = 1 medium = 17 grams
- Watermelon = medium slice = 17 grams
- Figs = 2 medium size = 16 grams
- Bananas = 1 medium = 14 grams
Here are fruit choices with less sugar:
- Avocado (yes, it’s a fruit) = 1 whole avocado = only ½ grams sugar
- Guava = 1 = 5 grams
- Raspberries = 1 cup = 5 grams
- Cantaloupe = 1 wedge = 5 grams
- Papaya = ½ of one = 6 grams
- Strawberries = 1 cup = 7 grams
“Pick” Your Options
The sugar in fruit makes us want more and more. Portion control waivers when a bowl of watermelon or a bag of grapes is staring at us. Yes, fruit is healthy, but at some point, the excess sugar is like having candy. A little in your oatmeal, the flavored yogurt, the orange with lunch, and the apple on the salad for dinner…sugar is adding up and up. You might want to re-think that morning smoothie. Sometimes, there’s a false perception of healthy of the many foods we love. Yes, fruit is packed with vitamins and minerals, but make sure you don’t pack them on your waistline by eating them in excess. Now when you “pick” your fruits, keep in mind the high and low sugar options.