Fruits That Are Not Sweet

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Fruits that are not sweet is a web explanation of the facts about fruits. This article has been formed keeping in mind the requirements of all kinds of readers who might have a keen interest in finding out facts about Tropical fruits. The most important reason I wrote this article is that there are lots of people who have a wrong notion that fruits which are not sweet will be also sour tasting and they avoid them because they do not like the sourness.

Fruits That Are Not Naturally Sweet?

There are many fruits, such as avocados, grapefruits, lemons and limes, that are not naturally sweet. These fruits contain a lower amount of fructose than sweeter fruits.

Avocados, while not normally thought of as a fruit, contain less than 1 gram of sugar per cup of sliced avocado, notes SF Gate. Avocados can help lower blood pressure and stabilize cholesterol levels. Lemons and limes are not sweet to the palate while containing 2 grams or less of sugar. Sour apples, sour grapes and sour cherries are also fruits that are not sweet to the taste. Sour cherries, gooseberries, kumquats and sour apples are not naturally sweet and fall into the category called acid fruits, states The Science of Eating. Acid fruits, while not sweet tasting, are excellent antioxidants as well as being rich in fiber. The amount of fructose in fruit indicates how sweet the fruit tastes.

To minimize the sugar in fruit, it is best to eat the fruit in its raw form, states SF Gate. Dried fruits and fruit juices contain higher levels of sugar. Eating too much sweet fruit with high levels of fructose can lead to diabetes, insulin resistance, high blood pressure, high cholesterol and obesity, explains The Science of Eating.

Avoid these 7 less-than-healthy fruits and veggies

According to the CDC, only about 10% of adults consume enough fruits and veggies. Depending on age and sex, adults should eat between 1.5 and 2 cups of fruit and between 2 and 3 cups of veggies a day. In some states, like West Virginia, only 6% of people eat enough veggies and 7% eat enough fruits!

Fruits and vegetables are good for you, of course, and people should be eating more of them. But, some fruits and veggies are less healthy than others for a variety of reasons. Here are seven to watch out for.

Potatoes

Technically, potatoes are vegetables, but nutritional experts recommend thinking of them as grains when placing them on your plate due to their high carb content. One medium-sized potato contains about 110 calories, and because they are high in simple carbs, potatoes can pose health problems to those with diabetes and weight concern—even when cooked in a healthy fashion.

In a high-powered study published in The BMJ, researchers found that increased consumption (four or more servings per week vs less than one serving per month) of boiled, baked, or mashed potatoes, as well as French fries, predicted hypertension.

Melons

The majority of fruits have a low glycemic index (GI). Sweet fruits like melon and pineapple, however, have medium GIs. These sweeter fruits should be carefully portioned in those with diabetes.

You may be wondering about watermelon, which is a sweet summertime treat. Although the GI of watermelon is high (above 70), its glycemic load is low, so it is a safe food choice for those with diabetes.

Bean sprouts

While not necessarily unhealthy, bean sprouts are grown in moist, warm conditions that promote the growth of SalmonellaListeria, and Escherichia coli. Various outbreaks of foodborne illness have been associated with bean sprouts. Simply washing bean sprouts will not clear the bacteria. Instead, sprouts need to be steamed thoroughly. Young children, pregnant women, and the immunocompromised should steer clear of bean sprouts. Only consume raw sprouts that are labeled “ready to eat.”Related: 5 reasons to avoid diet drinks at all costs

Corn

A “vegetable” that’s really a grain, corn contains about 180 calories and 40 g of carbohydrates per cup. Corn is known to spike blood sugar levels, so people with diabetes and those interested in weight loss should limit their corn consumption.

In a high-powered study published in PLoS Medicine, researchers examined the influence of fruit and veggie intake on weight change. The authors found that “many vegetables were inversely associated with weight change, but starchy vegetables such as peas, potatoes, and corn had the opposite association in which increased intake was associated with weight gain. Although these vegetables have nutritional value (potassium, vitamin C, vitamin B6, iron, fiber, and protein), they have a higher GL (lower carbohydrate quality) that could explain their positive association with weight change.”

Mangoes

On the upside, mangoes are a good source of certain vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants. In fact, one mango will supply you with your entire daily requirement of vitamin C. Mangoes are also high in vitamin A, folate, and potassium.

On the downside, one mango has about 30 g of carbohydrates and about 26 g of sugar. It also has a middle-to-high value of 60 on the glycemic index, along with a glycemic load of 9. And, as a mango ripens, its glycemic index rises. So, if you like mangoes, go for a smaller serving—and also watch out for them as sweetening ingredients in your smoothie and guacamole. 

Coconut

People don’t usually eat coconut raw, but coconut oil is used in baking. Coconut oil contains between 11g and 12 g of saturated fats, and saturated fats have been related to higher cholesterol levels and heart disease, although the evidence is mixed. Moreover, little research exists supporting any health benefits of coconut oil. When cooking, it’s probably best to reach for olive oil rather than coconut oil.

Kale

Kale has become pretty popular. It’s used as a garnish in salad bars and blended into smoothies. But, apparently, kale has a dark side.

The Environmental Working Group found that 60% of US kale samples were contaminated with the pesticide DCPA, which the EPA classifies as a possible carcinogen. Yikes! Experts have pushed for discontinued use of DCPA in agriculture.

Sweetest Fruits — Complete Guide With Chart

It is hard to comprehend how something as flavorful and delicious as fruit came into being, and in today’s global society we now all have the luxury of trying exotic fruits from all around the world.

But what makes fruit so sweet, and which are the sweetest fruits? All fruits naturally contain various types of sugars that give them a sweet flavor. Fruits that are grown under natural conditions and are allowed to ripen on the plant will have the sweetest flavor. The fruits with the highest levels of sugar are grapes, figs, mangos, and (surprisingly) jackfruits!

What Are The Sweetest Fruits?

So, now that your tastebuds are tantalized, are you ready to discover the sweetest varieties of fruit? Let’s take a look at our list of the very sweetest fruits out there!

Please note that these are ranked according to their sugar levels, not according to how sweet they may taste.

1. Jackfruits

Total sugars per 100g serving: 19.08g

Fresh Jackfruit in white dish, half of jack fruit and jackfruit leaf on wooden table.

A few years ago none of us had heard of jackfruit, and now it seems to be everywhere!

However, jackfruit is more commonly used in savory dishes than sweet — which is a surprise considering its high sugar content!

The reason for the rise in popularity of jackfruit is that it can be used as a meat replacement for a range of different vegan dishes. If you haven’t tried the jackfruit version of pulled pork, you really should!

When used as a meat substitute, jackfruit is normally eaten when it is underripe, before the starches have been turned into sugar. However, ripe jackfruit is far sweeter and tastes like a blend of mango and pineapple.

2. Grapes

Total sugars per 100g serving: 16g

You know when you’ve got a bunch of grapes in the fruit bowl and you just can’t stop snacking on them — well, it is probably due to their intense sweetness!

The level of sugars in grapes varies according to the variety, but top-quality table grapes are one of the sweetest fruits out there.

Grapes have a soft, juicy texture inside a thin edible skin, and they are small enough to pop a whole grape or two into your mouth at once.

Red grapes are generally sweeter than green ones, and they also contain higher levels of antioxidants and other nutritional benefits. Grapes are also low in calories and are a great replacement for sugary snacks.

3. Figs

Total sugars per 100g serving: 16g

It may surprise you that figs come so high on the list of the sweetest fruits — these little delights are so sweet that they are like eating honey or fruit jam!

In fact, figs were used as a sweetener in ancient times before sugar became more commonplace.

The reason that figs taste so sweet is that the sugars come in the form of fructose, which tastes very sweet to our palate. They are also very low in acidic flavors, allowing the sweetness of the fruit to truly shine.

4. Mangos

Total sugars per 100g serving: 14g

The flesh of a mango is dense, juicy, and packed full of natural sugars.

These tropical fruits have an intense floral flavor and aroma, like a combination of peach, pineapple, and papaya.

To get the maximum sweetness from a mango, ensure that the fruit is fully ripe before cutting into it. To test it, give the skin a press with your thumb — it should yield slightly.

Luckily, mangos ripen well in a fruit bowl, so if your fruit is not quite ready it is worth leaving it for another day or two.

5. Pomegranates

Total sugars per 100g serving: 14g

Who’d have thought that those jewel-like seeds in pomegranates were so high in sugar?

Pomegranates require quite a lot of effort to eat, as picking out the tiny edible seeds can be quite time-consuming.

However, they are definitely worth the effort — each red seed tastes like a cross between cranberry and strawberry, with an intense sweetness. The seeds consist of a fleshy outer section and a tiny hard pip, all of which can be eaten.

6. Sweet Cherries

Total sugars per 100g serving: 12.82g

Sweet cherries have an intense flavor and sweetness that is quite unlike any other fruit.

The flesh of cherries is soft and juicy, with a deep red color. This gives them a rich taste, similar to a mix of blackberries, raspberries, and plums.

Cherries are quite small and each fruit contains a small stone, so they can be fiddly to eat. However, the flavor and sweetness are definitely worth the effort!

They are also packed full of nutritional benefits including antioxidants and a range of different vitamins.

7. Bananas

Total sugars per 100g serving: 12g

Your tastebuds may not tell you that bananas are one of the sweetest fruits, but that dense flesh is packed full of starch, which is converted to sugars as the fruit ripens.

Ripe bananas have a delicious flavor with notes of honey and vanilla. The texture is smooth and rich, and a single banana is large enough to provide a filling and nutritious snack.

Because of their high sugar content, bananas make the ideal snack to boost your energy levels after a workout or during that mid-afternoon slump in the office!

8. Passion Fruits

Total sugars per 100g serving: 11g

passion fruits

Passion fruits are small, avocado-sized fruits with a tough rind and a soft, seed-filled center.

These seeds are surrounded by a jelly-like substance that is intensely sweet and packed full of flavor.

This soft, seed-filled pulp is normally scooped out and eaten with a spoon — we also love putting it on vanilla ice cream!

Ripe passion fruit has a sweet and complex flavor with hints of citrus, pineapple, and melon. To test if a passion fruit is ripe, take a look at the skin — it should be slightly wrinkled and give slightly when pressed with a finger. 

9. Pineapples

Total sugars per 100g serving: 10g

When it comes to sweetness levels, pineapples are an intriguing fruit.

They contain high levels of natural sugar, but the juice is also quite acidic. These acidity levels counterbalance the sugars, giving a complex sweet and sour flavor.

The flesh of a pineapple is contained within a thick outer skin which should be peeled and discarded. Pineapples have a crisp, crunchy texture with a satisfying juiciness. The flavor is tropical and aromatic, with a slight citrussy tang.

10. Apples

Total sugars per 100g serving: 10g

As the saying goes, an apple a day keeps the doctor away!

One apple constitutes a single portion of fruit, and the crunchy, juicy flesh of this crisp fruit is packed full of natural sugars.

There is some variation in sugar levels between different varieties of apples. Eating varieties, such as Pink Lady and Gala, are much sweeter than apples intended for cooking.

One of the benefits of apples is that they store well and are easy to transport, meaning we can enjoy them all year round!

IS MODERN FRUIT REALLY HEALTHY?

When Paleo dieters talk about eating according to evolutionary design, a huge elephant in the room is the evolutionary changes that have affected our food itself. We’ve bred animals to be fattier with milder-tasting meat: compare a chicken to a pheasant or another wild game bird, and the pheasant will taste extremely dry and gamey in comparison. We’ve bred vegetables to be less bitter and produce more edible parts. And we’ve bred fruit to be bigger, sweeter, seedless, and more uniform in appearance, so it looks nicer on a grocery-store shelf.

This long process of selective breeding has removed the fruit so far from its original state that most fruits need to be raised in highly artificial conditions because they can’t even survive without human assistance. In handcrafting our apples and pears to suit our taste buds, we’ve stripped them of their natural defenses against pests and predators, and transformed them into completely domesticated species dependent on human intervention from start to finish.

So with all these incredible transformations, is fruit still a healthy food that deserves to be lumped together in the “fruits and vegetables” category, or is it basically just whole food candy? We know that the genetic changes to modern dwarf wheat have made it even worse for us than it originally was; could the same disadvantages be true for fruit? Does modern fruit even still belong in the category of a “natural food,” or is it more like a sort of processed food that we’ve engineered to grow ready-made from a tree?

A Brief History of Fruit

Fruit picked off a tree is available to the most nomadic hunters and gatherers, and fruit was definitely eaten well before the advent of agriculture, although theorizing about precisely what fruits were available during the Paleolithic is an exercise in wild speculation. All we can really tell is that we definitely didn’t evolve to eat a fruit-based diet like apes and chimpanzees, but probably ate at least some fruit as it was seasonally available.

These wild fruits would have been small, difficult to get, and comparatively less juicy than their modern equivalents. To get some idea, take a camping trip somewhere in late summer, and go hunting for wild blueberries. If you’re lucky enough to find a patch, you’ll notice that they’re much smaller than the grocery-store equivalents, more acidic, and quite laborious to pick – tasty, but you’d have to scrabble around on your hands and knees all morning to get a fruit salad out of them.

When humans started settling down and growing crops, we also started cultivating fruits. The earliest pictorial record of fruit cultivation comes from Iraq, around 3,000 BC (for reference, this is well after the agricultural revolution, which took place around 10,000 BC). Ancient cultures in Egypt and Mesopotamia grew fruits including dates, olives, and grapes, and later apples and pears. By the time the Roman Empire dominated the Mediterranean world (around 200 BC), fruit culture was widespread, and the Romans enjoyed apples, dates, and other fruits as desserts. When European explorers discovered the New World, American fruits like pineapples and tomatoes were added to the European plate.

Cultivating fruit deliberately would have given us the first opportunity to breed the fruit for specifically desirable qualities. Fruits are usually grown not from scratch (by planting a seed in the ground), but by a process called vegetative propagation. In vegetative propagation, a gardener or scientist grows an entirely new plant from a piece of the old one, producing a “child” plant that’s genetically identical to the “parent.” It’s basically a way of cloning plants. At least one of these methods, called grafting, is an ancient technology, attested as early as 1800 BC in Mesopotamia.

In some cases, only vegetative propagation allowed an edible variety of the fruit to be developed at all. For example, take bananas. In the wild, bananas are pretty much inedible, because there are so many seeds relative to the amount of fruit. But every now and then, an evolutionary accident produced a sterile banana, one without seeds. With just the flesh of the fruit left, these sterile bananas were actually quite tasty. To get more of them, ancient banana-lovers bred them using cuttings (since without seeds, the banana couldn’t reproduce itself). This process started around 10,000 years ago, and today we’re still eating the genetically identical “descendants” of these early experiments in plant breeding.

Wild vs. Cultivated Fruit: Sugar Content

So how have all these human-induced variations changed the nutritional content of our fruit? One of the most obvious differences is the sugar content (most of which is fructose). Wild apples are small and bitter, nothing like a Red Delicious or Macintosh from a modern orchard. Compare a crabapple to the gleaming, polished fruits in the grocery store, and the difference is obvious. We like our fruit sweet, and we know how to keep it that way.

On the other hand, it’s very important not to let the changes of selective breeding blind us to the fact that many wild (non-cultivated) fruits are actually quite sweet naturally. Fruits are under evolutionary pressure to be sweet completely independent of human breeding, because that’s how they spread as a species. Their pleasant taste is how they attract animals (including humans, but also apes, monkeys, birds, and other fruit-eating species) to come and eat them, and then spread their seeds around through defecation. The sweeter the fruit, the more we’ll seek it out, and the better for the species. In other words, it’s in the fruit’s evolutionary advantage to be sweet, so it’s reasonable to expect that fruits should have been continually evolving to become sweeter regardless of what genetic experiments humans are carrying out in research institutions.

Evidence from uncultivated fruits bears this theory out. Some wild fruits are just as high in sugar as anything you can get at the grocery store, although others are smaller and less palatable. These sweet fruits are roughly equivalent to cultivated fruits in carb content, glucose and fructose ratios, and caloric value (some of them are even more calorie dense than our cultivated fruits).

Clearly, even though wild apples might not be naturally as sweet as a Red Delicious, it’s not impossible that Paleolithic humans would have had access to some other varieties of fruit that were just as sweet and just as high in fructose as modern cultivars. This similarity casts some serious doubt on the theory that modern fruits are just “natural candy” compared to some theoretical bitter, small, and fiber-rich ancient counterpart. But comparison to very sweet tropical fruits only tells half the story: it doesn’t account for how we grow and treat our fruits before we eat them.

Wild vs. Cultivated Fruit: Seasonality

Another argument against fruit is that before the advent of modern nutritional engineering, it was rare and available only in season. Before refrigeration became widely available, you couldn’t get blueberries in February or peaches in April unless you found some way to preserve them. Since most of these fruits ripen in the fall, this argument claims that fruit is a temporary sugar burst that helped us fatten up a little in preparation for possible starvation during the winter. Just look at bears gorging themselves on blueberries before they hibernate.

If this argument holds water, fruit starts to look like a food that might have been helpful in the Paleolithic, but isn’t so great for modern humans. After all, more fattening up is the last thing we need!

There’s one big problem with this argument, though: plenty of healthy hunter-gatherer groups live around the equator, where the weather is so warm that fruit grows year-round. And people in these groups simply are not getting fat from their fruit intake. If we’re talking about human evolution, this is likely the climate in which we spent a lot of our time, and observations of modern-day humans living this way hardly provide evidence for fruit as insulation for the coming winter.

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