Sugar in fruit vs sugar in candy - what's the deal?

Should I be eating less fruit if I'm trying to avoid sugar? While it's true that some fruit has more than 15 grams of sugar per serving, it's not exactly the same as 15 grams of sugar from candy, ice cream, or other sweet treats. Here are the facts you should know about sugar from fruit and sugar from everything else.


There are different kinds of sugar, including fructose, glucose, and sucrose. Fruit has all three types of sugar but the sugar is naturally-occurring. Therefore, sugar from fruit cause your body to react differently from how it reacts to sugar from a candy bar. When you eat fruit, your body digests the sugars more slowly than when you eat processed sugary foods. The sugar in fruit is also safer for those that struggle with blood sugar because it doesn't cause the same insulin spike after consumption.


If you wanted to go entirely sugar-free you could go down an internet rabbit hole trying to decide whether you should consume fruit. Technically, fruit has sugar, and therefore would not fit into that diet. However, whole fruit has many redeeming qualities including fiber and antioxidants. Ultimately, sugar from fruit can be a part of a very healthy diet.


What about dried fruit?


Eh, skip the dried fruit if you can. Generally, dried fruit has a lot of added sugar which makes it more similar to candy than pure fruit. Even frozen fruit sometimes has added sugar, so be sure to check labels before you buy it. You can always buy fresh fruit and freeze it yourself!


So, while a Hershey's bar and a cup of pineapple have about the same amount of sugar, they are not at all nutritionally equivalent.

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