We all know that we need plenty of fresh fruits and vegetables to stay healthy and happy. However, there’s a lot of contradictory advice as to how much fruit is good for you.
In particular, fresh fruit is known to contain high levels of natural sugar. So, if you’re diabetic for example, or you’re simply watching your sugar intake, it’s important to be aware of how fresh fruit can affect your blood sugar levels.
What effect can fruit have on blood sugar levels?
There are different types of sugar and the one found in fruit is referred to as fructose. However, this natural sugar doesn’t actually have any impact on the blood glucose levels.
So, if the sugar doesn’t raise blood sugar levels, does this mean it’s safe to consume in high quantities? Sadly not! It’s the carbohydrates in fruit which cause the real issue.
Different fruits contain a differing level of carbohydrates. The more carbs the fruit has, the bigger the impact it will have on blood sugar levels.
Which types of fruits can affect blood sugar?
All fruits have the potential to raise blood sugar levels if eaten in excess. However, the ones likely to cause the biggest issues include those which are concentrated or refined.
Fruit juices are one of the biggest culprits for raising blood sugar levels. In just 16 ounces, some fruit juices can provide a staggering 52g of carbohydrates. This is equal to around 13 full teaspoons of sugar. Not only that, but the nutrients contained within the fruits are often reduced or eliminated completely during processing. So, fruit juices are best avoided.
Similarly, dried fruits should be avoided. These are often a lot tastier than fresh fruit and there’s a good reason for that. When fruits are dried, the natural sugars are concentrated. So, if you have say a handful of raisins, you’ll be consuming around 30g of carbs which equals around 8 full teaspoons of sugar.
Some fresh fruits also contain higher levels of carbs than others. Mangoes and bananas have a high carbohydrate content, along with pears and apples.
So, which fruits should you focus on if you don’t want your blood sugar levels to spike? Berries tend to be a great option, along with melons such as cantaloupe and watermelon.
Overall, most of us aren’t eating enough fruit, but when we do, we tend to make the unhealthiest choices. If you want to avoid a spike in your blood sugar levels, it helps to understand more about how different types of fruits can affect you.