Monday, September 18, 2023
HomeHealthIs Fruit Sugar Bad For Diabetics

Is Fruit Sugar Bad For Diabetics

Get The Most Out Of Your Fruit Choices

Is Fruit Bad For Diabetics?

When choosing fruit, you’ll want to think about portion size, convenience, cost, and flavor, but also health benefits. Certain types of fruit, such as berries and citrus fruits, can be beneficial for people with diabetes.;

Berries are rich in vitamin C, folic acid, fiber, and disease-fighting phytochemicals.;Vitamin C is an important water-soluble vitamin that is involved in repairing cells , slowing down aging, and boosting immunity. Additionally their rich colorred, blue, and black comes from anthocyanins. Research;suggests that anthocyanins may help fend off certain chronic disease, including cardiovascular disease.

Citrus fruits, such as tangerines, also contain vitamin C, and potassium and are;a good source of fat soluble vitamin A, an important vitamin for eye health. Citrus fruits, also contain;phytonutrients;which can protect cells from damage, reduce inflammation, lower the risk of cardiovascular disease, and provide other health benefits. But, if you are on a potassium restricted diet or take cholesterol-lowering medication you may have to watch your intake of citrus fruits so make sure you discuss intake with your physician before adding them to your meal plan.;

Healthiest Fruits For People With Diabetes

All fruits have vitamins, phytochemicals, and other things that make them good for you. But some are more likely to lower your chances of chronic disease:

  • Blackberries. One cup of raw berries has 62 calories, 14 grams of carbohydrates, and 7.6 grams of fiber.
  • Strawberries. One cup of whole strawberries has 46 calories, 11 grams of carbohydrates, and 3 grams of fiber.
  • Tomatoes. One cup of sliced or chopped tomatoes has 32 calories, 7 grams of carbohydrates, and 2 grams of fiber.
  • Oranges. One medium orange has 69 calories, 17 grams of carbohydrates, and 3 grams of fiber.

Which Fruits Are High In Sugar

Anything dried boasts the highest sugar content in fruit, especially cranberries, raisins, dates, and figs, says Laura Hartung, MA, RD, LDN, CPT.

See our chart of sugar content in fruit

Compare the dried version to a raw fruit and youll be amazed by the difference in sugar content. Dried pears, for instance, contain a whopping 112 g of sugar in one cup. The same amount of raw Bartlett pears contains a fraction of that14g. One cup of packed golden raisins has 108 g of sugar, while the same amount of red or green grapes contain 23 g of sugar.


Diabetics need to count their carbohydrate content at each meal and know the amount of sugar and carbs in the fruits they consume, says Laura Hartung, MA, RD, LDN, CPT. Women diabetics need to limit their carbohydrate intake to 30 to 45g of carbs per meal. Male diabetics need to limit their carb intake to 45 to 60 g of carbs per meal. One cup of mashed banana contains 51 g of carbs, for instance, while a cup of red or green grapes has 27 g.

Tropical fruits pineapple, bananas, and pomegranates also contain higher amounts of sugar, Hartung says. One cup of pineapple, for instance, contains 16 g of sugar while the same amount of banana contains almost 28g. Other foods that top the highest-sugar-conten-in-fruit list: cherries , grapes , mangoes , lychees and passion fruit .

Read Also: Can Type 2 Diabetics Donate Blood

Reason : Fruits Are Packed With Fiber Which Slows The Release Of Sugar In Your Blood

In order to understand why whole fruit is a-ok, you need to understand a little bit of biology.

When you eat sugar, it triggers a series of reactions in your body which release insulin. The main role of insulin is to bring your blood sugars back down to safe levels.

But when you have chronically elevated sugar levels in your blood then, over time, your body cant keep up with the demand for insulin or it becomes de-sensitized to it. So you gain weight, develop insulin resistance, and this can eventually lead to the onset of Type 2 diabetes.

This is bad news for the body because now, when you have elevated sugar levels in your blood, your body struggles to respond appropriately and this can lead to a number of health issues and complicationsand even the risk of death.

So. doesnt this mean that people watching their blood sugars should avoid fruits at all costs because they contain sugar? Well, actually no.

All whole fruits come packaged by nature full of FIBER, which slows the release of energy into your;blood.

And, when it comes to controlling your blood sugars, SLOW RELEASE ENERGY EQUALS GOOD;ENERGY.

Another massive benefit of fiber is it helps trigger the satiety receptors in the bodymeaning your stomach and brain registers you as full or satisfiedhelping to prevent over-eating .

Let me illustrate with an example comparing the fiber content and blood sugar effects of eating a whole orange, orange juice & orange soda.

How Much Fruit Should Someone With Diabetes Eat

6 Best Low

The US Dietary Guidelines recommend that all adults eat about two cups of fruit per day, where one piece of fruit is about the size of a one-cup serving. People with diabetes should still eat fruit, but should be more mindful of fruit intake, paying attention to the type and amount of fruit that you eat. Pairing fruit with foods that also have protein and fat can help prevent a blood sugar spike.

Recommended Reading: Is Oatmeal Bad For Diabetics

How Much Fruit You Should Eat

“The secrets to success for patients with diabetes are to pick fruits which are low in sugar content and control the portion size that is ingested,” Kolterman says.;

Portion control is important when eating fruit, according to the American Diabetes Association . While it can vary depending on the size and type of fruit, in general, a single portion of fruit one piece of whole fruit or a 1/2 cup of sliced fruit contains roughly 15 grams of carbohydrates, which is considered one carb serving.;

Most adults with diabetes should eat 3 to 4 carb servings per meal and 1 carb serving per snack, though you should check with your doctor to develop an individualized eating plan. The ADA recommends “exchanging” carbohydrates from dairy or grains if you’re going to eat a piece of fruit. This ensures that you’re still limiting your carbohydrate intake.;

Overall, speaking with your doctor or a registered dietitian can help you craft an eating plan including fruit to meet your specific needs.;

What Is The Glycemic Index And Why Does It Matter

Its important to watch your sugar intakeregardless of which type of sugar youre consuming. The glycemic index is a handy tool that ranks foods based on how they affect blood sugars, Fleming explains. This, in turn, helps you make more informed nutritional decisions.

Foods that are low in the glycemic index are more slowly digested. They cause a slower rise in blood sugars, Fleming says. Foods higher in the glycemic index are digested and absorbed by the body more quickly, so they have a bigger effect on blood sugars and therefore insulin. Most fruits are low to medium GI.

If youre living with diabetes, Fleming says its important to consume foods low in GI to help control blood sugars. She also points out that low GI foods will keep you feeling full longer, which helps with weight management.

Recommended Reading: Donate Blood Diabetic

The Best Fruits For Diabetics And How Much You Should Eat

  • Yes, diabetics can eat fruit, but it’s important to pay careful attention to your fruit intake.;
  • Even though fruit is a carbohydrate high in sugar, which can spike blood sugar, it also is high in fiber, which can help regulate blood sugar.;
  • Fresh fruit is better for diabetics than dried fruit or fruit juice here’s which fruits are best to eat and how much you should have each day.;
  • This article was;medically reviewed;by Stephanie Redmond, PharmD, a certified diabetes educator and co-founder of;Diabetes Doctor.;
  • This story is part of Insider’s guide to Diabetes.;

People with diabetes need to carefully control their diet in order to keep their blood sugar levels in a healthy range.;

When you eat carbohydrates, your body breaks them down into sugar, which enters your blood in order to be used as fuel. For diabetics, who cannot process blood sugar effectively, carbohydrates can raise blood sugar, and because of that, many diabetics try to limit or count carbs, including sugar and other carbs, like those from fruit or grains.;

Fruit is a carbohydrate that contains sugar, and it may spike blood sugar levels if eaten excessively. However, fruit also has a high fiber content, and eating lots of fiber can regulate blood sugar levels and even help prevent type 2 diabetes.;

Why Do I Need To Be Careful About Fruit Juices And Smoothies

Top 5 Worst Fruits For Diabetics

Weve mentioned fruit juice and smoothies and these are something that, ideally, need to be avoided or at least cut down on. This is because fruit juice and smoothies have most of the roughage removed or already broken down, so it is very easy to drink large quantities in a short space of time and ultimately this means extra calories and carbohydrate. Having less intact fibre means fruit juices and smoothies are not as beneficial to the body compared to whole fruits.;

A serving 150ml provides about 15g carbs which counts towards free sugar, so you can see how easily it is to take in a lot of carbohydrate and free sugar without really noticing.

Don’t Miss: Can You Be Skinny And Have Diabetes

Misconception #: Carbohydrates Are Stored As Fat

In the 80s, fruits were considered a great food for optimal health.; When the Atkins revolution took hold in the early 90s, years of great dietary habits took a turn for the worst.; Soon people were avoiding carbs like the plague, under the assumption that excess carbs turn into fat.; It turns out that Atkins was only partially right, in that excess carbs do turn into fatin most mammals but NOT in humans.

The process of converting carbohydrates into fat is referred to as de novo lipogenesis .; In an excellent paper written by Dr. Marc Hellerstein, MD PhD , he argued against the notion that carbohydrates are converted into fat in humans, and that this pathway is only significant in smaller insects and animals such as bees and pigs.; Using years of laboratory data, he states the following:

Bees make wax from honey . Pigs fatten on a grain diet. Indeed, all organisms, from bacteria to mammals, have the enzymes of de novo lipogenesis. Because storage of energy as lipid is much more efficient than storage as carbohydrate, the presumption has been that animals use de novo lipogenesis as a metabolic safety valve for storage of carbohydrate energy present in excess of carbohydrate oxidative needs .

Most experimental data in humans, however, contradict this view of the function of de novo lipogenesis. Initial studies showed little or no de novo lipogenesis after short-term carbohydrate overfeeding and under most conditions of carbohydrate energy surplus .


Other Healthy Strategies For Eating Fruit

What else can you do to make sure you eat healthy fruit?

  • Portion size is key! Set out the amount of fruit that you want to eat, and then stick to that portion ;this will help you avoid eating too much fruit and experiencing a blood sugar spike. Its also helpful to spread multiple servings of fruit out over the course of the day, rather than eating a lot of fruit at once.

  • Choose fresh fruit whenever possible. Canned fruit, dried fruit, and sometimes frozen fruit often have added sugars . Processed fruit also generally contains added sugar.

  • Try to avoid fruit juice. Fruit juice contains all of the sugar of fruit without the fiber to help your body process it. This means that juice can cause your blood sugar to spike quickly. If you are drinking fruit juice, drink a very small portion and consider adding water to it; make sure you get 100% fruit juice so that no extra sugars are added to sweeten the drink. Note: this is why juice can be used to quickly raise your blood sugar if you are experiencing hypoglycemia.

Don’t Miss: How To Mix Nph And Regular Insulin

Fresh Fruit Is Healthy And Safe For Diabetics

Diabetics should be conscious of their fruit intake, but overall, fruit is still a healthy and important part of any diet for managing diabetes.;

“There is a myth that fruit is sugar and shouldn’t be eaten if you are diabetic, but that isn’t quite true,” says Susan Besser, MD, a primary care physician in Maryland. “Yes, it is a carbohydrate and one should eat it in moderation, but it is actually a healthy carbohydrate and metabolized much better than other carbs like cakes, cookies, or candies.”

In fact, research has linked fresh fruit consumption to improved health for diabetics. A study published in the Public Library of Science in 2017 followed half a million Chinese men for seven years, asking about their fruit intake and measuring their blood sugar levels.;

The researchers found that higher fresh fruit consumption was associated with a significantly lower risk of developing diabetes. And even for people with existing diabetes, those who ate more fresh fruit had a lower risk of death or developing serious health complications. The study concluded that diabetics should not be told to limit fresh fruit intake.

Moreover, consuming fruit at a young age may even reduce the risk of developing type 2 diabetes at a later age. For example, a study published in the Journal of Nutrition in 2018 found that lowering saturated fat intake and increasing fruits and vegetables in children ages 8 to 10 years old may improve insulin sensitivity, reducing the risk of type 2 diabetes.;;

Does The Body Treat Fruit Sugar The Same As Refined Sugar

20 Healthiest Fruit List for Diabetics

This is where things get sticky. While the body breaks down all sugar the same waywhether youre getting your fix from cake or a bananathe process for fruit sugar is much slower. Fleming explains this is because fiber slows down the digestion of sugar, and many fruits are rich in fiber . Another tip to help slow down the absorption of the fruit even more is to pair your fruit with a meal or a protein, she says.

Foods loaded with refined sugarsuch as cookieshave little to no fiber, allowing sugar to quickly travel through the bloodstream. This is why you experience a sugar high and then crash after you guzzle down soda or eat a pint of ice cream. On top of throwing our sugar levels out of whack, refined sugary foods also tend to lack other nutritional value and are often considered empty calories .

Also Check: What Is A Normal A1c For A Non Diabetic

Is It Important For People With Type 1 And Type 2 Diabetes To Be Careful About How Much Fruit You Eat

Yes. For all people, and for all people with diabetes, fruit can affect your blood sugar level. That doesnt mean that you shouldnt eat fruit at all ;fruit still includes important nutrients that your body needs, some of which can lower your risk of heart disease, type 2 diabetes, and other chronic conditions.

Fruits Diabetics Should Avoid General

Generally speaking, its a long-held myth that diabetes patients should avoid eating all fruits. Everyone knows that fruits are a healthy source of minerals, vitamins, and fiber. Avoiding these entirely is near impossible, and it can actually deprive your body of some required antioxidants, folate, bioflavonoids, and potassium.

So, it all comes down to not necessarily avoiding certain fruits, but how much of such sugary fruits you should consume. All in all, every fruit contains carbohydrates, and you should know how each fruit affects you specifically and take steps to keep your blood sugar under control.

Don’t Miss: What Is A Normal A1c

Can I Eat Fruit If I Have Diabetes

Thursday, 18 April 2019

A very common question asked by people newly diagnosed with diabetes is, do I need to cut fruit out of my diet?;Like other topics that discuss both food and diabetes, there is an abundance of;conflicting information and opinions.; This article attempts to set the record straight;and give you the facts so you can decide what is right for your diabetes management.

Why Does Carb Intake Matter For People With Diabetes

IS IT BAD TO EAT A LOT OF FRUIT? Fruit sugar and diabetes…

Carbs, protein, and fat are the macronutrients that provide your body with energy.

Among them, carbs have the greatest effect on your blood sugar by far. This is because theyre broken down into sugar, or glucose, and absorbed into your bloodstream.

Carbs include starches, sugar, and fiber. However, fiber isnt digested and instead absorbed by your body in the same way other carbs are, so it doesnt raise your blood sugar.

Subtracting fiber from the total carbs in a portion of food will give you its digestible or net carb content. For instance, if a cup of mixed vegetables contains 10 grams of carbs and 4 grams of fiber, its net carb count is 6 grams.

When people with diabetes consume too many carbs at a time, their blood sugar levels can rise to dangerously high levels.

Over time, high levels can damage your bodys nerves and blood vessels, which may set the stage for heart disease, kidney disease, and other serious health conditions.

Maintaining a low carb intake can help prevent blood sugar spikes and greatly reduce the risk of diabetes complications.

Therefore, its important to avoid the foods and drinks listed below.

Sugary beverages are the worst drink choice for someone with diabetes.

First, theyre very high in carbs, with a 12-ounce can of cola providing 38.5 grams .

The same amount of sweetened iced tea and lemonade each contain almost 45 grams of carbs exclusively from sugar .

Artificial trans fats are extremely unhealthy.

Read Also: Can People With Diabetes Donate Blood


Popular Articles