I grew up in a tropical country, where there is no shortage of bananas, mangos, watermelon, you name it! To this day, eating fruit is a daily habit.
Fruit is delicious, refreshing, and most importantly, super healthy. You’ve probably also have heard that fruit is good for weight loss. And that is correct!
But the question remains, what is the best fruit for weight loss? Dig into this blog post to learn which fruit is the lowest in calories!
How Does Fruit Help with Weight Loss?
Forever linked with vegetables as one of the healthiest food groups, fruit is notoriously good at keeping excess weight at bay. There are several reasons for this:
1. It has a high water content
This means that fruit will keep you well-hydrated in the same way that plain old water would. It also means that you’ll be filling up on water instead of calorie-dense foods. In other words, eating two cups of fruit will fill you up, but you’ll only be consuming around 100-200 calories.
2. Fruit is high in fiber
Some of the best fruit for weight loss is high in fiber. Fortunately, this includes basically all fruit! Why is it good to eat foods high in fiber?
When you consume more fiber in your diet (as opposed to low-fiber foods like soda, candy, and processed foods), you tend to stay fuller for longer. This satiates hunger pangs and can keep you from making impulse eating decisions.
3. Fruit is low in calories
There are a lot of calorie-dense foods out there, but fruit isn’t one of them.
Although fruits contain more calories than vegetables on average, their calorie counts are still notably lower than those in most processed foods, baked goods, dairy products, and grains. This means you can eat more fruit (and feel fuller for longer) without wasting calories.
4. It gives you energy and keeps you healthy
Like vegetables, fruits contain essential nutrients to keep your body strong – inside and out. From here, it’s simple: When you’re healthier, you have more energy, and when you have more energy, you feel better.
And finally, when you feel better, you’re more likely to lead a healthy lifestyle that includes eating nutritious foods and exercising regularly.
5. Fruit can curb a hungry sweet tooth
Got a ferocious sweet tooth? Let it loose and you could face the consequences days later on the scale.
Instead of giving in to the impulse for chocolatey sweets and delectable baked goods, try fruit. Although it’s high in sugary goodness, it also contains many nutrients and a notable amount of fiber to counteract the carbs.
Fruits That Can Help You Lose (or Maintain Your) Weight
The best fruit for weight loss has lots of fiber, a high water content, and – most importantly – very few calories per serving.
Here is a list of the fruits with the fewest calories:
With the word “water” right there in the name, you know watermelon has high water content. This makes it perfect for keeping you hydrated and also means it’s low in calories. Finally, watermelon is high in arginine – an amino acid known for burning fat at a faster-than-average pace.
100 grams: 30 calories, 0.4g of fiber, 0.6g of protein
Also called carambola, star fruit has high water content, is rich in fiber, and has a low-calorie count, making it ideal for those looking to lose weight. In addition, star fruit has been known to boost the metabolism and even has the potential to help prevent cancer.
100 grams: 31 calories, 2.8g of fiber, 1g of protein
Delicious strawberries are mostly water and are thus low in calories. As an added bonus, strawberries are also rich in antioxidants, which are molecules that help fight free radicals and prevent disease.
100 grams: 32 calories, 2.0g of fiber, 0.7g of protein
Other types of melon can help with weight loss efforts as well. For example, cantaloupe and honeydew melons both contain a lot of fiber and have modest calorie counts. Melon also contains powerful carotenoids (antioxidants) and lots of vitamin C and vitamin A.
100 grams: 34 calories, 0.9g of fiber, 0.8g of protein
Blackberries are low in calories and high in water content. Like strawberries, blackberries are also known for containing many antioxidants, which are excellent at preventing cell damage and fighting disease.
100 grams: 43 calories, 5.3g of fiber, 1.4g of protein
Best fruit for weight-loss smoothies:
Smoothies can be an excellent tool for weight loss. This is especially true if you have a sweet tooth because a nutritious smoothie is an ideal replacement for unhealthy sugary treats like ice cream and fast-food shakes.
The best fruit for weight-loss smoothies is probably berries. Basically, any and all berries blend easily into smoothies and mix well with other standard smoothie ingredients like milk, protein powder, and even spinach and zucchini. For best results, freeze your berries first (or buy them pre-frozen)!
Which Fruits Should Be Avoided for Weight Loss?
While basically all fruits have health benefits, not all fruits are designed for optimal weight loss.
I want to clarify that I am not saying that you should not eat the types of fruit I listed below. You should eat all fruit, and fruit is most likely not the reason why you are overweight!
All I’m saying is that you should watch out for how much you are eating of these types of fruits, as they are high in calories and can make your weight loss journey more difficult if you eat too much of them.
Yep, avocados are a type of fruit! Some people mistake them for vegetables.
The reason they’re not the best fruit for weight loss, though, is their high-fat content. Even though the fat found in avocados is technically of the “healthy” variety (monounsaturated), too much of it can cause unnecessary weight gain.
100 grams: 160 calories, 6.7g of fiber, 2.0g of protein
Though not very large, persimmons pack a hefty amount of sugar, making them less-than-stellar for weight loss. In just one persimmon, you’ll find 21 total grams of sugar. That’s nearly twice the amount of sugar found in an average-sized peach.
100 grams: 127 calories, 0.0g of fiber, 0.8g of protein
3. Passion fruit
If you’ve got a passion for passion fruit, you’re not alone!
Sadly, however, the high sugar content makes them unsuitable for an effective weight-loss regimen. One cup of passion fruit contains about 27 grams of sugar, which by some estimates is higher than the entire recommended daily intake of sugar for women.
100 grams: 97 calories, 10.4g of fiber, 2.2g of protein
Bananas are many people’s go-to fruit. With a built-in “cover” and a deliciously sweet flavor, it’s no wonder they’re an easy and tasty snack to grab!
Unfortunately, bananas are also higher in calories than many other fruits. Moreover, much of those calories come from starches or sugars (carbs), which aren’t ideal for weight loss.
100 grams: 89 calories, 2.6g of fiber, 1.1g of protein
The benefits of grapes are vast: they’re rich in fiber and potassium. They may even help protect against cardiovascular disease and eye disease. The drawback to grapes, however, is their high sugar content. Those little flavor bombs aren’t delicious for no reason, after all.
100 grams: 69 calories, 0.9g of fiber, 0.7g of protein
When to Eat Fruits for Weight Loss
There is no particular time that is recommended for eating fruit. This is true whether your goal is to lose weight or not. No matter the time of day, fruit makes for a healthy snack.
With that said, if you tend to resort to sugary snacks at a certain time of day because you’re tired or stressed out, making sure fruit is available during this time could help you.
Many people, for example, reach for candy bars or processed carbs when afternoon sleepiness sets in. This can be detrimental to your weight-loss efforts because these snacks cause higher insulin levels, leading to weight gain.
Having a cup of washed strawberries or a few slices of melon on hand at these times could help curb your carb cravings.
Is Eating Too Much Fruit Bad for Weight Loss?
This depends on what other foods you’re eating. In general, it’s recommended that you eat a medley of healthy foods to lose weight:
- Vegetables and fruits
- Whole grains
- Healthy fats
- Plant-Based Protein
If you’re able to get an adequate amount of each of these food groups into your daily diet, it’s unlikely you’ll end up eating so much fruit that it will hinder your weight-loss efforts. With that said, it’s best to stick to fruits from the “Fruits with the Fewest Calories” list found above.
Also, avoid dried fruit (click the link for more information on this topic), as it is usually high in calories. Dried fruit most likely has added sugar, and you are more likely to eat more of it since it is smaller in size (ex. raisin vs. grape).
If I Eat Only Fruits for a Week, How Much Weight Will I Lose?
While it is possible to lose weight from eating only fruit for a week, it’s not guaranteed. In fact, in some cases, you may end up actually gaining weight because of the high sugar content in fruit.
Additionally, if you were to lose weight, it would likely only be a modest amount — perhaps one to two pounds. A diet like this is unhealthy and unsustainable. Humans require a diverse array of foods to meet their nutritional needs.
Fruitarian Diet: Is It Safe or Really Healthy for You?
A fruitarian diet is a highly restrictive diet that limits the participant to eating only fruit. In short, a fruitarian diet is not recommended for anyone.
First, eating only fruit can cause malnourishment as fruits don’t contain the array of nutrients we humans require. This can also lead to excessive cravings and your body going into “starvation mode” to conserve energy.
Second, fruits are naturally high in sugar, which can lead to tooth decay and spiking blood sugar levels. For diabetics, a fruit-only diet can even be dangerous.
Finally, many people will actually gain weight on a fruitarian diet, negating the initial intention entirely.
If you’re looking to lose weight, adding more fruit into your diet is a great place to start. Fruit is low in calories and high in fiber. Plus, eating more fruits will help you feel full without all the sugar that comes with other snacks such as candy bars or cookies.
With so many types of delicious and refreshing fruit out there, it’s easy to find one that suits your taste buds! However, the best fruit for weight loss is watermelon, starfruit, strawberries, melon, and blackberries.
So what are you waiting for? Take this opportunity to get started on your health and wellness journey by incorporating some fresh fruit into your diet today!