Low-Carb Fruit List: Which Fruits Have the Most and Least Sugar


 

If you follow a low-carb diet or are living with diabetes, you may have a complicated relationship with fruit. You may have heard you don’t need to worry about how much sugar is in fruit because it is considered natural sugar. However, the truth is that it depends. Fruits contain many nutrients, and if you’re going to be eating sugar it’s better to have some great nutrients to go with it! The good new is that the fruits lowest in sugar have some of the highest nutritional values, including antioxidants and other phytonutrients.

 On the other hand, some people digest and process sugar better than others. If you are someone who responds well to a low-carb diet, it pays to be careful.

 

The FDA recommends adults eat 2 cups of fruit per day. How much fruit you eat, may differ if you are following a specific low-carb diet plan. Some of the popular low-carb diet plans differ, based on whether they consider glycemic index or glycemic load (South Beach, Zone), while others just look at the amount of carbohydrate (Atkins, Protein Power). Other diets (Atkins, South Beach) don’t allow fruit at all in the first phase. Not all low-carb diets limit fruit, however. Diets like the Paleo diet, Whole30 and even Weight Watchers (although it’s not necessarily a low-carb diet) do not place a limit on fruit.

In general, if you are following a low-carb diet, you should try and eat fruits that are low in sugar. When consulting the list below, which ranks fruit based on sugar content, keep in mind that some values are per cup while others are per whole fruit.

Fruits Low in Sugar

  • Lime: 1.1 grams of sugar per fruit
  • Rhubarb: 1.3 grams of sugar per cup
  • Lemon: 1.5 grams of sugar per fruit
  • Apricots: 3.2 grams of sugar per small apricot
  • Cranberries: 4 grams of sugar per cup
  • Guavas: 4.9 grams of sugar per fruit
  • Raspberries: 5 grams of sugar per cup
  • Kiwifruit: 6 grams of sugar per kiwi

Fruits Containing Low to Medium Levels of Sugar

Fruits Containing High to Very High Levels of Sugar

  • Pineapple: 16 grams of fruit per slice
  • Pears: 17 grams of sugar per medium pear
  • Bananas: 17 grams of sugar per large banana
  • Watermelon: 18 grams of sugar per wedge
  • Apples: 19 grams of sugar in a small apple
  • Pomegranates: 39 grams of sugar per pomegranate
  • Mangos: 46 grams of sugar per fruit
  • ​​​Prunes: 66 grams of sugar per cup
  • Raisins: 86 grams of sugar per cup
  • Dates: 93 grams of sugar per cup
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