5 Low-Carb Fruits That Are Super Good For You
By Christine Yu; Photograph by Freepik
Just in case you’re jumping on the low-carb train.
We can’t stress enough how good fruit is for you. It contains many essential vitamins and cancer-fighting antioxidants, and is a healthier sweet option than many other foods. Eating fruits and vegetables on the daily can help slash your risk of death and reduce your risk of Type 2 diabetes, heart disease, and cancer.
However, fruit has gotten a bad reputation lately with the advent of low-carb, high-protein diets. That’s because all fruit has naturally-occurring sugars and thus has a higher carbohydrate count, says registered dietitian Bonnie Taub-Dix, author of Read It Before You Eat It. People assume that there isn’t a low-carb fruit and go so far as to skip eating fruit altogether for fear of overloading on carbs and sugar.
But those fears are misguided, says Taub-Dix. While of course some people who are diabetic or hypoglycemic do need to be mindful of all sugar and carb intake, even from fruit, she says she has never met anyone who has gained weight because they ate too much fruits and vegetables. It’s important to remember that fruit (and how many carbs they have) are just one part of the nutritional picture. And the carbs you’d find in fruit are of course not the same as the processed carbohydrates you’d find in a slice of white bread.
That said, there are certainly some low-carb fruit options out there if you’re truly concerned. So if you’re embarking on a low-carb diet (or just looking to find a sweet treat that’s lower in sugar and carbs), these five fruit options can’t be beat.
Apricots may be sweet and juicy, but there are only 3.89 grams of carbs in a small fruit and only 70 kilojoules. They’re also a good source of vitamin A. Not bad for a little guy.
This pocket full of sunshine has 11 grams of carbs in one medium-size fruit, but that’s not all. One kiwi meets your daily vitamin C needs (and then some) and is a good source of vitamin K, offering 38 percent of your daily needs. You’ll also load up on minerals like potassium, phosphorus, and copper.
You’ve probably heard that watermelon has a lot of sugar, but that’s not entirely true, says Taub-Dix. One cup of cubed watermelon contains only 11 grams of carbohydrates, along with vitamin A, vitamin C, potassium, and magnesium.
A basket of irresistibly bright red berries is a good choice for a low carb fruit. One cup of strawberries has 11 grams of carbs and is an antioxidant powerhouse, supplying 149 percent of your daily vitamin C needs. It’s also a great source of folate and the mineral manganese. Plus, because strawberries generally are small in size, you’re likely to eat less, notes Taub-Dix.
Okay, while you may not think of this superfood staple as a fruit, it is. And a low-carb one too. There are only 8.53 grams of carbs in a 100-gram avocado. “It’s a good source of fiber and healthy fat,” says Taub-Dix. “When you have some fat in your diet, it’s going to slow the way carbohydrates are absorbed too.” Win-Win.
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