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Can Fruits Be Consumed If You Are A Diabetic Or Trying To Lose Weight? See What Experts Say

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New Delhi: Fruit is nature’s ready-made snack, full of vitamins, fibre, and other nutrients that contribute to a balanced diet. It is also low in calories and high in fibre, which may aid with weight loss. In fact, consuming fruit has been related to reduced body weight as well as a lower risk of diabetes, hypertension, cancer, and heart disease. But, too much fruit is also not good for these conditions. So, how much fruit should be consumed so that it does not result in a spike in blood sugar levels or it makes you put on weight?

In this regard, ABP Live spoke to experts who spoke about the daily recommendation of such sugars, which fruits should one avoid if one is a diabetic and more.

Consumption Of Fruits And Fructose: Individual Factors And Dietary Considerations

Determining the optimal amount of fructose-containing fruits to consume on a daily basis depends on several individual factors and dietary goals. While fruits do contain fructose, they are also rich in essential nutrients and dietary fibre, making them a valuable part of a healthy diet.

“The American Heart Association does not provide any specific guidelines regarding the consumption of fructose-containing fruits, but they do recommend setting limits on total sugar intake, which includes both naturally occurring sugars (such as fructose in fruits) and added sugars,” said Dr. Bejoy Bikram Banerjee, Golf View Healthcare & Research Institute.

He also said that the current recommendations for added sugars are up to 25 grams (6 teaspoons) or 100 calories per day for women and up to 36 grams (9 teaspoons) or 150 calories per day for men.

“Incorporating a variety of fruits into your diet, including seasonal options, and prioritising whole fruits rather than juices or extracts, ensures that you receive a diverse array of nutrients, fibres, and antioxidants. Additionally, it is crucial to consider overall calorie intake and engage in regular physical activity to maintain a healthy lifestyle,” Dr. Bejoy Bikram Banerjee further added.

Individuals with specific dietary concerns or underlying health conditions such as diabetes, celiac disease, renal disorders, thyroid disorders, or recent surgeries should consult a Registered Dietitian, Nutritionist, or Healthcare Professional. Expert professionals can provide personalised recommendations based on individual needs, considering the specific requirements and goals of each person.

Is It Okay For Diabetics To Eat Fruits? 

One often comes across this question, especially if you are a diabetic. Should you eat fruits or not and even if you are allowed, what are the ones you can have? In general, including fruit in a healthy diet should not increase the risk of diabetes, instead, a diet rich in sugar, refined carbs, and saturated fats is more likely to pose a risk. In this regard, Dietician Anupama Menon told us the benefits of fruits for diabetics and also which ones to embrace and avoid.

  • The Benefits of Fruits for Diabetics:

Fruits are rich in essential vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, and dietary fibre, making them an important part of a balanced diet for people with diabetes. The natural sugars found in fruits are different from the added sugars found in processed foods. As fruits are accompanied by fibre, they help to slow down the absorption of sugar into the bloodstream. This natural combination can prevent rapid spikes in blood glucose levels, providing a more stable energy source.

Berries: Blueberries, strawberries, raspberries, and blackberries are excellent choices for diabetics due to their low sugar content and high fibre and antioxidant levels.

Citrus Fruits: Oranges, grapefruits, lemons, and limes are packed with vitamin C and soluble fibre, contributing to better glycemic control.

Apples: With their moderate sugar content and significant fibre content, apples can be a suitable fruit option for diabetics.

Cherries: Cherries contain compounds that may improve insulin sensitivity, making them a beneficial addition to a diabetic’s diet.

Avocado: Though technically a fruit, avocados are low in sugar and high in healthy fats, making them an excellent choice for diabetics.

  • Fruits to Consume in Moderation:

Grapes, Banana, Pineapple and Watermelon should be consumed in moderation because of their higher sugar concentration, so it’s essential to limit the portion size.

Dried Fruits: Drying fruits concentrates their sugar content, making them a less suitable option for diabetics.

Fruit Juices: These beverages often lack fibre and can lead to rapid spikes in blood sugar levels.

Canned Fruits in Syrup: Canned fruits are usually soaked in sugar syrups, making them unsuitable for diabetics.

With the right approach, diabetics can enjoy the nutritional benefits and natural sweetness of fruits without compromising their health.

Is Consumption Of Fruits Good If You Are On A Weight Loss Journey, Owing To The Fructose It Contains?

Fruits are an integral part of the weight loss journey as they help curb cravings for sweets and provide natural fruit carbonate in the form of fructose. To maximize their benefits, it is advisable to consume high-fibre and low-GI fruits, such as apples, guavas, pears, pineapples, cherries, strawberries, kiwis, and plums.

“The fibre content in fruits also helps in feeling full for a longer time. However, it is essential to consume them in appropriate portions, with a daily intake of 400 to 500 grams of fruit being suitable. At one time, a serving of 150 to 200 grams is recommended. For added filler, fruits can be mixed with salads containing cucumber and carrots. Incorporating a small portion of healthy fats through nuts like peanuts and almonds is also beneficial, as fats take longer to digest and slow down absorption,” said Dt. Jyoti Khaniojh, Nutrition And Dietetics, Max Super Speciality Hospital, Patparganj.

Which Fruits Should Not Be Avoided On Your Weight Loss Journey?

According to Dietician Garima Goyal, “Most people think of avoiding bananas on a weight loss journey, considering them to be high in carbohydrates and calories. Along with carbohydrates, what people forget is that these are complex carbohydrates loaded with fibre which not only keeps you satiated for a longer time but also helps to shed weight.”

“Along with this, this fruit is a treasure house of minerals namely potassium and magnesium, making it a healthy choice in summer to maintain electrolyte balance in the body. Also, they have a medium glycemic index ranging between 42-62, not causing sudden spikes in blood sugar levels. In general, never stop consuming any seasonal fruit as they protect you from all the seasonal flu and allergies too,” she further added.

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