Sugar content in fruits and vegetables

The fact that sugar is evil is known to every person who, at least in the slightest degree, follows his own diet and, in principle, is an adherent of a healthy lifestyle. And the media literally bombards us with stories about the dangers of sugar to health and advice on how to avoid any sweets.

After several years of studying nutrition and its effect on health and life expectancy, I myself realized that sugar is one of the main food enemies of modern man. However, most of us do not always understand what kind of sugar, in what quantities, under what name and in what products are dangerous to health.

For example, many beloved honey is nothing more than a tandem of glucose and fructose (there are at least 65% of them in the delicacy). A glass of the well-known commercial soda contains 10 teaspoons of sugar. And the amount of sugar in 100 g of watermelon pulp is 5-10 g. Are you surprised? Wondering if there is sugar in fruits? Of course have! But not all sugar is created equal.

Many of my readers ask if fruits are harmful (after all, most of them are so rich in sugar), where there is more sugar, and where there is less, how much fruit can be consumed per day without harm to health and waist size. Therefore, I decided to publish this article, which, I hope it helps to figure it out.


What is sugar in fruits and vegetables

There is one point that the media and health professionals do not often clarify: the sugar found in whole foods is healthy and necessary for us. The love for sweets, inherent in man by nature, was intended to maintain health.

You can and should quench your natural cravings for sweets with fresh fruits and berries in their natural form. I mean whole plants, not juice (even freshly squeezed), puree or whatever. Whole fruits contain not only fructose, but also fiber, vitamins, minerals and other important chemical elements that are useful and essential for the body.

Recall that fructose is a monosaccharide. The term “fructose” itself appeared in the middle of the 390th century – the chemist Miller began to use it to refer to sugar in fruits. Fructose is found in an absolutely natural and natural way in fruits, vegetables, berries, roots. Consuming these products with fructose in the composition, a person is saturated with energy. However, it must be remembered that despite the fact that fructose and glucose contain the same amount of calories (about 100 kcal per XNUMX g), fructose is less satiating. That is, you need to eat more products with it in the composition in order to feel the longed-for feeling of satiety. And all would be fine, but our body can store energy “in reserve” (in the form of fatty deposits), and can transfer fructose to the liver. But this “gift” for the organ is very harmful – just like alcohol, Spanish researchers assure.

That is why information about the sugar content in fruits is important for all those who care about their own beauty and health.

The benefits and harms of sugar in fruits, berries and vegetables

After this information, do not rush to exclude natural sources of fructose from your body. Not everything is so simple. For example, the developer of the Back2Fitness program Sam Yasin said that he does not consider it reasonable for people who are losing weight to give up fruits, vegetables and berries. According to a well-known fitness trainer, the bowl of fruits is more beneficial than the harm from sugar that is included in their composition.

The explanation for this is very simple: in addition to sugars, vegetables, fruits, berries, roots contain a huge amount of vitamins, minerals and other useful substances. And some of the specimens can boast of the presence of phenols in the composition (these antioxidants can significantly reduce the risk of cancer and cardiovascular diseases).

Take a banana. Yes, bananas are a very high-calorie fruit (91 kcal per 100 g), which belongs to the category of fruits with a high sugar content (12 g of sugar per 100 g of product). But it does contain a substantial amount of magnesium and potassium. And potassium, as you know, can reduce the risk of stroke by 21% (when consuming about 3 bananas). Banana contains tryptophan, an amino acid from which the hormone of happiness, joy and satisfaction, serotonin, is produced. In addition, banana is rich in fiber, due to which it helps to normalize the bowel cleansing process.

We have one more weighty argument “for” the consumption of vegetables, fruits, berries – these “natural” products mainly contain water and fiber, and the sugar concentration is much lower than in any refined products.

Sugar in “natural packaging” and refined sugar: what is the difference

In an effort to make their product more desirable, food manufacturers are leveraging our natural sugar cravings in such a way that it has begun to do us a lot of harm. The fact is that during the refining / refining process, when sugar is removed from its “natural packaging”, it loses water, fiber and almost all other nutrients and elements. All that remains of the “initial kit” is sugar and only sugar.

Food manufacturers add these concentrated and tasty sugars to almost all foods – bread, sour cream, sauces, juices. As a result, food stuffed with added sugar is often loaded with unhealthy fats, salt, preservatives, and colors. All of this makes it unhealthy for a variety of reasons, and not just the added sugars.

In an effort to make their product more desirable, food manufacturers are leveraging our natural sugar cravings in such a way that it has begun to do us a lot of harm. The fact is that during the refining / refining process, when sugar is removed from its “natural packaging”, it loses water, fiber and almost all other nutrients and elements. All that remains of the “initial kit” is sugar and only sugar.

Food manufacturers add these concentrated and tasty sugars to almost all foods – bread, sour cream, sauces, juices. As a result, food stuffed with added sugar is often loaded with unhealthy fats, salt, preservatives, and colors. All of this makes it unhealthy for a variety of reasons, and not just the added sugars.

Added sugar

Small amounts of added sugar, especially if the food is homemade, does not pose any significant health risk. For example, the American Heart Association recommends not exceeding this amount of added sugar per day:

– 6 teaspoons for women,

– 9 teaspoons for men,

– 3 teaspoons for children.

BUT!!! It is very important to understand that sugar enters our body not only when we add 2 teaspoons to our morning cup of coffee. Added sugars are found in almost all industrially processed foods, not just those that taste sweet (like cookies), but some of them include:

  • sauces for salads and pasta,
  • canned soups,
  • snacks and spreads,
  • marinades,
  • cold drinks,
  • some processed meat products (sausage, sausages, bacon, ham),
  • milk products,
  • breakfast cereals and energy bars.

Therefore, it is necessary to take these products into account if you want to follow the recommendations and not exceed the sugar consumption rates that I described above.

Here’s a small picture that shows how much added sugar some foods contain:



Sugar in vegetables

Agree, a vegetarian “in the body” is more the exception than the rule. However, this does not mean that vegetables, which make up the main diet of vegetarians, are devoid of sugar. Fructose is present in vegetables, but most often it is either small amounts of sugar or medium. There are not so many vegetables with a high sugar content (for example, boiled beets, cherry tomatoes, carrots, onions are the most sugar-rich). Vegetables are rich in fiber, which allows them to be absorbed slowly. And besides, it is very difficult to eat large quantities of raw vegetables.

But with thermally processed vegetables, the situation is somewhat different. When cooking, frying, stewing, the fiber in the food is destroyed and at this moment the body loses the “regulator” of the blood glucose level and the absorption of carbohydrates, the “accelerator” of metabolism. Because of this, you should not give up processed vegetables (moreover, due to the lack of the required amount of enzymes, not all people can afford raw vegetable snacks), it is important to know their glycemic index.

The glycemic index is a measure of the rate at which carbohydrates in food are absorbed and increase blood glucose levels. Foods with a high glycemic index can quickly raise blood sugar levels, while foods with a low glycemic index do it slowly and “sparingly”.

Low Sugar Fruits

You will not find fruits that are absolutely non-nutritive and contain no sugar. But there are fruits with minimal sugar content. Those who, for health reasons, need to reduce the amount of sugar they consume, and those who dream of losing weight and at the same time do not want to deprive themselves of dessert in the form of fruit salad, love to feast on them.


Probably everyone remembers how in childhood, at an elevated temperature, our parents soldered us with a hot drink with cranberries. This drink was quite sour, but after it in the morning, as if by magic, the state of health improved. It’s about vitamin C and tannin. Juice, fruit drink, syrup, cranberry jelly – powerful prevention of colds. In addition, these drinks have general tonic properties. And all this with a minimum amount of sugar in the composition.

Lemon and lime

These are the fruits with the lowest sugar content. Both “relatives” are rich in vitamins C, B, A, contain phosphorus, iron, calcium and many other useful substances. If you think that its main spectrum of action is to cheer up in the morning, giving a “sourness” to tea, then you are mistaken. Lime and lemon are often recommended by experts to include in your diet for the prevention of cardiovascular diseases, as well as in order to improve the health of the teeth and oral cavity (thanks to calcium and phosphorus). There is only one “but”: both lime and lemon contain little sugar in the composition, but these foods can increase appetite.


Strawberries can be called one of the “berry” record holders in terms of the content of vitamins, minerals and nutrients. Strawberries are rich in B vitamins, vitamin C, iron, calcium, and sodium. At the same time, it is low in sugar, and it can be used in any form and in any dish.


When asked which foods have the least amount of sugar, experts would definitely mention kiwi. Besides the fact that this fruit contains a large amount of vitamin C (that is, kiwi is an effective fighter against colds), its juice is a natural antioxidant. And kiwi can and should be consumed with diabetes. Scientists claim that this product is able to maintain the “sugar curve” at an optimal level.


Raspberries, like strawberries, boast an impressive list of vitamins, minerals and nutrients in the composition: vitamin C, B3, B9, E, PP, potassium, magnesium, calcium, chlorine, anthocyanin substance (strengthens capillaries). That is why raspberries are both just a tasty and safe snack for the figure, and a full-fledged medicine, if necessary.

High sugar fruit

Of course, you should not completely eliminate fruits with a high sugar content from the diet. They, like their less sweet “competitors”, are a storehouse of vitamins. However, their glycemic index is high. This means that after consuming such fruits, the blood sugar level rises at a rather rapid rate. Experts advise diabetics to minimize the presence of these fruits in the diet (and sometimes even to refuse them altogether), and people who want to lose weight eat them in small quantities and preferably in the morning.


Figs are an amazing fruit. On the one hand, it contains quite a lot of sugar. But on the other hand, but ego fruits (we are talking about fresh figs) can lower blood glucose levels. As for dried figs, there is much more sugar in them than fresh ones. In addition, dried fruits contain a lot of fiber.


Here is the answer to the question – which product contains the most sugar. This berry, along with pomegranate, dates, banana, raisins, is one of the record holders for the amount of sugar in the composition. In addition, some of the “grape” fructose is fermented by bacteria in the intestines (which is why, after eating this berry, there may be a feeling of bloating).

And on the pleasant side, grapes are rich in vitamins A, C, E, B6, folates, phosphorus, flavonoids. These plant substances are powerful antioxidants. That is why grapes (both in “live” form and in the composition of cosmetics) are recommended as a prevention of premature aging.


They say that two mangoes a day are an excellent prevention of cancer. There are more than 55 types of mango in India and Sri Lanka, and each of them finds application in both cooking and medicine. Mango fruits are rich in vitamin C, vitamins B, D, E. In addition, they have a huge amount of calcium, iron, phosphorus and amino acids. But mango also contains a huge amount of sugars.


Yes, this product does not contain the largest amount of sugar, but a specialist will definitely mention it when he talks about which fruits contain a lot of sugar. This intricate fruit is not very popular in Russia. The fact is that it is very difficult to store and transport it. But if you are lucky enough to become the owner of the “Chinese plum”, keep in mind that along with a huge amount of usefulness (which diseases are not treated by Chinese doctors with the help of lychee), lychee contains a lot of sugar.


Along with a decent portion of sugar, cherries contain many vitamins that are useful during pregnancy and lactation – for example, C, vitamins of group B, PP, E, K. In addition, cherries are rich in coumarins and oxycoumarins, due to which they are a preventive measure for thrombus formation.

Sugar content table in fruits and vegetables

Knowing how much sugar is in fruit will be useful not only for people with diabetes, pregnant women, or ardent fans of healthy lifestyles. Each of us knows the “formula” of harmony: the intake of calories should be equal to the expenditure, and each of us wants, if not to correspond to the modern canons of beauty, then at least be healthy and able to work.

Fruit is often perceived as something completely nutritious – it would seem that there will be a handful of grapes in between meals. Of course, nothing terrible will happen, only the calorie content of your daily diet will increase. A small handful of grapes contains approximately 50-60 kcal. And in order to burn these very calories, you need to walk about 1,5 km at a brisk pace!

The American Heart Association recommends 26 grams of sugar per day for women and 10 grams more for men. Keep this in mind the next time your soul asks for a fruit salad.

You can see the fruits in the table below with a low sugar content, and a high one.

ProductCalorie content (kcal per 100 g of product)Sugar content (g per 100 g of product)
Figs (raw)10716
Bananas (ripe fruit)8912
Passion fruit9711
Currant (black)448
Currant (white and red)397,3


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