I’ve recently been told that it’s necessary to limit fruit consumption because of the high sugar and carbohydrate content. Is this true? I love fruit, and have always assumed that it is a healthy choice. Do I need to monitor my intake? Thanks. –Robert C.
ONLY if you are overweight or have impaired glucose tolerance* then, YES, you should limit fruit consumption.
The natural sugar in fruit is a healthy alternative to the refined sugar in desserts, processed snacks and treats. Weighing in with only 75 Calories per serving on average, fruits are part of an eating plan that can actually prevent obesity and diabetes. Fruits provide many beneficial compounds including vitamins, fiber, antioxidants and water. As in all things, moderation is the key. To be sure you are getting a variety of nutrients from all food groups, make sure you leave room for the suggested number of servings of vegetables (5-7), grains (6-8) and dairy (2-3) as other carbohydrate sources.
Click HERE for a list of sugar content in fruit.
If you’re just looking to control sugar to improve your diet, worry more about barbeque sauce, salad dressings, bottled/canned beverages and other hidden sources of added sugars. Spending your time and effort trying to eliminate those processed items makes much more sense than tackling raw fruit. One can of regular soda, a bowl of sweetened cereal or an 8 ounce cup of flavored yogurt each have more sugar than two pieces of fruit!
* Impaired glucose tolerance is the condition of elevated fasting blood sugar without being diagnosed with diabetes mellitus. Many in the healthcare setting also use the terms “borderline diabetes” or “pre-diabetic.”
- Debbie J., MS, RD
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