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Fruits Low in Sugar
Here's a deeper dive into popular low-carb fruit, as well as ways you can easily incorporate them into your eating plan. Keep in mind that for sugar and carb content, some values are per cup while others are per whole fruit.
Lime (1.1 grams of sugar and 7 grams of carb per fruit) and lemon (1.5 grams of sugar and 5.4 grams of carb per fruit): These are rarely eaten on their own. You'll typically use these fruits juiced and sweetened. Try adding a slice to your water or a squeeze of juice to add tartness to a dish.
Rhubarb: 1.3 grams of sugar and 5.5 grams of carb per cup. You're unlikely to find unsweetened rhubarb, so check the label before you assume what you are eating is low in sugar. If you prepare rhubarb yourself, you can adjust the amount of added sugar or artificial sweetener.
Apricots: 3.2 grams of sugar and 3.8 grams of carb per one small apricot. They are available fresh in spring and early summer. You can enjoy them whole, skin and all. Be sure to watch your portions of dried apricots, however, as they shrink when dried.
Cranberries: 3.8 grams of sugar and 12 grams of carbs per cup (fresh). While very low in sugar naturally, be aware that they are usually sweetened when used or dried.
Guava: 4.9 grams of sugar and 8 grams of carb per fruit. You can slice and eat guavas, including the rind. Some people enjoy dipping them in salty sauces. They are the low-sugar exception to generally sugary tropical fruits.
Raspberries: 5.4 grams of sugar and 14.7 grams of carb per cup (raw). Nature's gift for those who want a low-sugar fruit, you can enjoy raspberries in every way. Eat a handful by themselves or use as a topping or ingredient. You can get them fresh in summer or find them frozen year-round.
Kiwifruit: 6.8 grams of sugar and 11.1 grams of carb per kiwi. They have a mild flavor but add lovely color to a fruit salad. Also, you can eat the skin.
Fruits Low to Medium in Sugar
Blackberries and strawberries: 7 grams of sugar per cup. Blackberries are a little higher in carbs with 13.8 grams per cup while strawberries have 11.7 grams. While they have little more sugar than raspberries, both still make excellent choices for a snack, in a fruit salad, or as an ingredient in a smoothie, sauce, or dessert.
Figs: 8 grams of sugar and 9.6 grams of carb per medium fig. Note that this figure is for fresh figs. It may be harder to estimate for dried figs of different varieties, which can have 5 to 12 grams of sugar per fig.
Grapefruit: Half a grapefruit has 8.9 grams of sugar and 10.3 grams of carb. You can enjoy fresh grapefruit in a fruit salad or by itself, adjusting the amount of sugar or sweetener you want to add.
Cantaloupes: 8 grams of sugar and 8.3 grams of carb per large wedge. These are a great fruit to enjoy by themselves or in a fruit salad. They are the lowest in sugar of the melons.
Tangerines: 9 grams of sugar and 11.2 grams of carb per medium tangerine. They have less sugar than oranges and are easy to section for fruit salads. Tangerines are also great additions to packed lunches and snacks, with built-in portion control.
Nectarines: One small nectarine has 10.7 grams of sugar and 14.3 grams of carbs. Nectarines are tastiest when ripe and are a good source of fiber.
Papaya: 9 grams of sugar and 15 grams of carb in one small papaya. Of the selection of tropical fruits, papaya is among the lowest in sugar.
Oranges: One medium orange has 12 grams of sugar and 15.4 grams of carbs. With their tough outer skin, the fruit holds up well in your bag until you're ready to peel and eat as a quick, on-the-go snack.
Honeydew: 13 grams of sugar per wedge or 14 grams per cup of honeydew balls. When balled, this melon has about 16 grams of carb per cup. Bites of honeydew make a nice addition to a fruit salad or can be popped as a snack by themselves.
Cherries: 13 grams of sugar and 22 grams of carb per cup. Ripe fresh cherries are a delight in the summer, but if you're limiting sugar you'll want to watch your portions.
Peaches: One medium peach has 13 grams of sugar and 14 grams of carbs. The sweet, soft fruit can be eaten on its own but also suits many dishes, including desserts, ice pops, smoothies, and sauces.
Blueberries: 15 grams of sugar and 21 grams of carb per cup. While blueberries are higher in sugar than other berries, they're packed with a powerful blend of antioxidants.
Grapes: 15 grams of sugar and 27.3 grams of carbs per cup. If you're watching your sugar intake, keep an eye on serving size. Grapes make a refreshing snack but it's easy to lose track of portions.
Fruits High to Very High in Sugar
Pineapple: 16 grams of sugar and 21.6 grams of carb per slice. As a tropical fruit, pineapple is higher in sugar than other options, but it's also a rich source of thiamin and has anti-inflammatory properties.
Pears: One medium pear has 17 grams of sugar and 27.3 grams of carbs. The winter fruit is relatively high in sugar and carbs but is a good dietary source of vitamin C.
Bananas: A large banana has 17 grams of sugar and 27 grams of carbs. The fruit favorite is tasty, easy, and convenient, but keep in mind that bananas are higher in sugar and carbs than other options.
Watermelon: A wedge of watermelon has 18 grams of sugar and 11.6 grams of crabs. While there's nothing like a refreshing slice of watermelon on a summer's day, the sugar content is a little high compared to other fruit.
Apples: One small apple has 19 grams of sugar and about 25 grams of carbs. Apples make easy snacks and meal additions but are higher in sugar than equally convenient tangerines or oranges.
Pomegranates: 39 grams of sugar and 29 grams of carbs per pomegranate. While the whole fruit adds a lot of sugar to your intake, if you limit the portion to 1 ounce you can reduce its sugar and carb load while still enjoying the fruit in moderation.
Mangos: One mango has 46 grams of sugar and 50 grams of carbs. Given how high they are in sugar and carbs, the tropical fruit is best enjoyed on occasion if you're following a low-carb eating plan or watching your sugar. In moderation, mangoes are an excellent source of fiber and several phytonutrients.
Dried fruits like prunes (66 grams of sugar and 32.2 grams of carbs per cup), raisins (86 grams of sugar and 115 grams of carbs per cup) and dates (93 grams of sugar and 6.2 grams of carbs per cup) are very high in sugar. They're most often encountered in trail mix, granola bars, and cereals, which can also be high in added sugars. Read nutrition labels carefully and check the serving size if you're considering including these options in your eating plan.
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