Vitamins in Fruit: Your Body Needs Fruit and Their Vitamins
Fruit is free of cholesterol, and most fruit is virtually fat-free. It’s full of vitamins, particularly vitamins A, C and E, and various fruit also contributes varying minerals, phytochemicals that enhance health, and fiber. Citrus fruit, bananas, berries and pears are especially high in soluble fiber, which is thought to help lower cholesterol.
Some organizations recommend consuming 25 to 30 grams of fiber per day. You could do that with five to nine servings of fresh fruit. The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Food Pyramid emphasizes fruits as part of a healthy diet. It recommends between one-and-a-half and two-and-a-half cups of fruit per day for adults, depending on the age and activity levels.
Why Eat Fruit?
Fruits can help you fill up without filling out. That’s because fruit is low density, which means fewer calories per serving. For example, a half cup of mixed nuts has about 438 calories. On the other hand, half a grapefruit gives you 100 percent of your daily need for vitamin C and only about 50 calories. Half a cup of cubed cantaloupe has only 28 calories. And many fruits are high in water content. This adds volume without any calories. Grapefruit, for example, is about 90 percent water. The U.S. Department of Agriculture recommends between one-and-a-half and two-and-a-half cups of fruit per day for adults, depending on their age and activity levels.
Different Fruit, Different Vitamins
Apples will give you vitamins A, C and E, plus a generous serving of fiber. Bananas provide A, C, E and B6 (pyridoxine). Oranges contain vitamins, A, B1 (thiamin), C and folate. Kiwi has vitamins A, B2, B6 and C. A medium kiwi has about 45 calories and provides most the daily need for vitamin C. A cup of strawberries will give you the day’s requirement for vitamin C and only 45 calories. One medium orange has all the vitamin C an adult woman needs each day and has only 60 calories. A cup of fresh pineapple has about half of the daily vitamin C requirement, and about 74 calories. Avocados are often thought of as a vegetable. But they really are a fruit, and are rich in nutrients. They’re high in B vitamins niacin, thiamin, riboflavin and folate. They also contain monounsaturated fats. One California avocado has about 170 calories, because it has 27 grams of fat.
It’s easy to slip more fruit into your diet. For example, add blueberries, strawberries or bananas to your cereal in the morning. Add fruit to each meal, or have it for dessert. You could also toss peach slices, strawberries, blueberries or kiwis into your salads.
Easy Ways to Eat More Fruit