11 Best Fruits to Eat For Weight Loss
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Fruit is known for its naturally sweet flavor and bright colors, and is also a nutrient-dense food. In fact, some of the nutrients most commonly under-consumed by Americans, like potassium and Vitamin C, can be found in many different fruits. Fruit also contains folate and fiber, and a wide variety of antioxidants and compounds that have positive health properties. With so many nutrients found in fruit, it’s no wonder the federal recommendation is for adults to consume at least 1.5 to 2 cups per day.
Packed with nutrients that promote health, fruit is clearly a food we should be eating more of. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) even states that eating a diet rich in fruits and vegetables can help reduce the risk of many of the leading causes of illness and death in the United States, including heart disease, type 2 diabetes, some cancers, and obesity. When it comes to aiding in weight loss, fiber is the nutrient in fruit that can help shed pounds. Compared to many other sources of these nutrients, like nuts, whole grains, and legumes, fruit requires little to no prep, and can satisfy a sweet tooth without any added sugar.
When exploring the different methods for weight loss, it’s easy to become more focused on what you can’t eat rather than the foods you should eat to shed some weight. Fruit is lower in calories than other sweet foods, packs more fiber than many common packaged snacks, and is easy to take with you when you need something on the run. For these reasons, and more, fruit should be part of your daily menu. And, if you’re looking to improve your diet for weight loss purposes, it could be as easy (and delicious), as eating more fruit. Here are the 11 best fruits for weight loss. Read on, and for more, don’t miss 25 Best Food Swaps To Jumpstart Weight Loss.
A fruit that has received a bad rap over the years, bananas are actually packed with nutrients and could help you lose body fat. Providing about 3 grams of fiber per serving, bananas aid in satiety while providing fewer calories than other carb-dense foods. The color of your banana may even influence its impact on weight loss, according to research. Unripe green bananas contain more resistant starch than their yellow, ripe counterparts. This resistant starch appears to lend many positive attributes to the body, including improved glycemia which goes hand-in-hand with weight control.
Known for its tart flavor, research suggests this fruit may be able to help lower body weight when eaten before a meal. While fresh fruit will ensure all of the fiber remains intact, weight loss was also documented in participants who consumed other grapefruit products before their meal, like juice and capsules. Although the mechanism of this weight loss is not fully understood, the fiber content, relatively low-calorie count, and low glycemic index of grapefruit likely all play a role.
Eat it on its own, pair it with an easy protein, like cottage cheese, or serve it over a lettuce- or grain-based salad to incorporate grapefruit into your daily eating habits.
Another tropical fruit known for its sweetness, pineapple is a source of enzymes that aid in digestion. In particular, pineapple contains bromelain which aids in the digestion of proteins. Improved digestion may also regulate appetite, which could in turn aid in weight loss.
Pineapple is also a source of fiber, allowing it to promote fullness and contribute to daily fiber needs. One study noted the fiber intake of adults in the U.S. is less than half the recommended intake, and increasing fiber consumption is a critical step in curbing obesity.
Pineapple pairs great with yogurt and cottage cheese for a protein-rich snack, and can even be grilled with your favorite protein for a sweet and savory combination.
While avocados are not as sweet as the other items on this list, they are considered a fruit nonetheless. Avocados are much higher in fat compared to other fruits, but that may actually help them aid in weight loss. In fact, one study found individuals who included half of an avocado with their lunch meal reported higher levels of satisfaction and less desire to eat.
When added to a salad, mashed and spread on toast, or combined with shredded chicken or canned tuna as a mayo alternative, the healthy fats and fiber in avocado may contribute to your weight loss goals.
Berries are known for their antioxidant and fiber content, both of which benefit the body. One study found participants who consumed a small snack of berries in the afternoon ate fewer calories at dinner compared to participants who consumed an equal number of calories from candy as an afternoon snack. Researchers also documented it took longer for participants to eat the berry snack compared to the candy. Both of these outcomes could help individuals lose weight.
Incorporate berries into your favorite smoothie, with your morning oatmeal, or as part of your afternoon snack to reap their benefits as some of the best fruits for weight loss.
Another fruit packed with antioxidants and also known for promoting better sleep, cherries could help you lose weight, too. In a study conducted on rats, those that received whole tart cherry powder mixed into a high-fat diet didn’t gain as much weight or build up as much body fat as rats that didn’t receive the cherry powder.
While we suggest eating the whole cherry to receive its full benefits, including fiber, adding a serving of this fruit to your day could help you lean up.
Providing 6 grams of fiber per serving, pears are one of the higher-fiber fruits on this list. While we have established the benefits of fiber on weight loss, there is no exception to pears. In one study evaluating the effects of adding fruit or oats to a diet, apples and pears were found to be associated with more weight reduction than the group consuming oats. Pears are considered in-season August through October in the U.S. and are another fruit enjoyed raw or cooked.
Poach them and serve with a granola topping for a healthy dessert or dice them over your favorite cereal or oatmeal for a fiber-rich breakfast.
While you may not munch on lemons like you would other fruit, this citrus still earns a spot on the list of best fruits for weight loss. Adding freshly squeezed lemon to your water can promote fluid intake, which could in turn aid in weight loss. Studies note drinking more water increases the number of calories you burn in a day, which could contribute to weight loss. In fact, one study observing water intake in overweight women found increasing their water intake over 32oz per day lead to an extra 4.4-pound decrease over a 12-month period.
Adding lemon to your water contributes valuable nutrients, like vitamin C, and can also lead to better hydration and more weight loss.
All forms of melon boast high water content and are considered to be some of the lower-calorie fruits available. Foods that provide a lot of volume for a few calories are great when trying to lose weight. In addition to having a good “bang for your buck” when it comes to calories, watermelon in particular may aid weight loss. One study conducted in mice document lower weight and fat mass in groups given a watermelon extract, in addition to improved blood cholesterol levels.
Melon can be enjoyed in savory dishes, eaten on its own as a snack, or served with lean prosciutto meat for a boost of protein.
This small fruit known for its brown, rough outer peel is packed with nutrients. With green and yellow varieties, kiwi contains many important nutrients, like vitamin C and fiber, and these attributes may allow it to aid in weight loss. According to research, diets high in fiber from produce appear to promote weight loss and increase satiety. The flesh of one small kiwi provides about 2 grams of fiber, and the peel adds another gram. Kiwis also appear to promote gut health and aid in digestion, two more factors that could aid in your weight loss goals.
Add diced kiwi into your next fruit salad for a pop of green or simply cut it in half and scoop out the nutrient-dense flesh with a spoon for an easy snack.
A tropical fruit known for its orange flesh and clustered black seeds, papaya is a rich source of enzymes that aid in digestion. Additionally, compounds in papaya can improve digestive symptoms related to Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS). With many positive attributes to the digestive system, which may support weight loss as well, papaya is also a rich source of fiber. One study concluded eating a high-fiber diet may increase the likely hood of weight loss regardless of dietary pattern. Fiber also promotes satiety which could reduce overeating and aid in a weight loss goal.
Papaya can be eaten raw or cooked, and many enjoy this fruit with savory ingredients, like a drizzle of tahini or nut butter.