Tasty Low Carb Fruits for your Diet!
Being on a low carb diet can be tough because of all those sweet treats that are off-limits. The good news is that some of the best sweet treats out there are totally compatible with a low carb lifestyle, of course I'm talking about fruit. Fruit is a great way to get a fix for that sweet tooth without losing track on your diet, but not all fruit is created equal. So what are the best low carb fruits out there?
The very short answer: Berries. Pretty much all types of berries are great on a low carb diet. Even the highest carb berry (blueberries) only has about 8g of carbs per 1/2 cup. In addition, berries are an important source of antioxidants and vitamins in your diet. But let's break down into more detail.
Blueberries: Blueberries are widely available throughout the U.S. and are in season during the summer and fall. Recent studies have indicated that blueberries, beyond being a low carb fruit, can enhance memory and possibly reduce the incidences of strokes. A handful blueberries is a good easy snack that wards off hunger and contains lots of vitamins and minerals the human body requires.
Carbs per half cup : 8-10
Strawberries: Strawberries are an excellent source of vitamin C and flavonoids. I like to cut them up and mix them with blueberries to get a little flavor variation when I snack.
Carbs per half cup: 4-5
Blackberries: High in antioxidants (which studies suggest may be useful in preventing cancer), blackberries have significant amounts of dietary fiber, vitamin C, vitamin K, folic acid, and manganese.
Carbs per half cup: 6-8
Raspberries: Another great source of antioxidants, Raspberries are also incredibly dense in dietary fiber compared to other fruits and have almost 50% of the recommended daily value of vitamin C in 1 cup.
Carbs per half cup:5-7
Important to note: Make sure you are eating the whole berries and not just juice. Cranberries themselves are an excellent low carb fruit, but very few people consume cranberries in their natural form. When fruit (like cranberries) are converted into juice they become much more concentrated in sugar (carbohydrates) and lose a lot of the good antioxidants and vitamins (these are often contained in the skin of the fruit).
Though berries definitely sit at the top of the low carb fruit pyramid, other fruits such as grapefruit, peaches, apples, and pears and practical choices. Though higher in carbs than berries, they do contain important vitamins and minerals and are a better overall sweet tooth fix than caving for your favorite pound cake.
Not all carbohydrates are created equal, and those found in naturally occurring foods like fruit are better for your overall health because they come along with other key nutrients. So next time you get a craving for something sweet, and berries just won't do it, grab your favorite fruit as an alternative high carb treat and feel good about your food choice!