Fruit—or nature’s candy, as some like to call it—is a natural source of sugar (fructose). In fact, certain fruits can pack up to 14g of sugar in less than a one-cup serving. Read all about how it effects your body in Can fruit make you fat? The bottom line: In moderation, no, but if you’re trying to lose weight, seriously minimize your intake or reach for fruits lower in sugar.
But there are some other things you should factor in before you ban fruit completely: “While the sugar is certainly important to note, it’s also crucial to know how much fiber each fruit has, which helps negate some of the effects of the sugar content,” says Brooke Alpert, MS, RD, CDN founder of B Nutritious.
Fruits have various amounts of other important nutrients, like fiber, and also some protein and good fats—all of which help your blood sugar to spike more slowly because your body is first working to digest the other compounds.
What’s more, there are optimal times to consume fruit. If you’re really looking to limit sugar, make sure you’re not eating overly ripe fruits. The starch begins to turn into simple sugar as it ripens, which is why it tastes sweeter. So, try to eat them before they become super saccharine and soft to the touch. And, easiest of all, opt for fruits that are naturally lower in sugar or highest in fiber.
Next, from least to greatest, is how much total sugar is in a 3-oz serving of 15 different kinds of fruit. If you’re trying to lose weight or lower your body fat percentage, reach for the fruits that appear first in the gallery; we’ve ranked the varieties based on sugar, but also note the unique health benefits.