Should I Eat Dried Fruit?

Dried fruits such as apricots, apples, bananas, prunes, and raisins tend to be popular snack items. Whether eating alone or in a trail mix, many people see dried fruit as a healthy snack option. In previous articles we have addressed the issue of how healthy fruit really is…or isn’t. However, we have not included dried fruit in those discussions. So, is dried fruit really a healthy snack alternative? Hopefully after reading this article you will have the answer.

NUTRITIONAL ANALYSIS OF COMMON DRIED FRUITS

Just as in natural fruit, the main component of most dried fruits is sugar. Only now, you not only have the natural sugars of the fruit you most likely have added sugars. Below is a list of some dried fruits and their sugar and fat content per serving:

Fruit Serving Size Total Calories Sugar Grams Fat Grams
Raisins ¼ cup 130 29 0
Prunes 5 pieces 100 12 0
Apricots 1/3 cup 104 23 0
Wild Oats Natural 1/3 cup 120 28 0
Banana Chips ¼ cup 150 8 5

As you can see the serving size is small and the sugar content is high, even in the “natural” dried fruit. Considering bananas have a high amount of sugar compared to most fruits, the dried banana chips have a surprisingly low amount of sugar for dried fruits. Please note that the amount of calories that are packed into a serving of dried fruit is, on average, about double the amount of calories in a serving of fresh fruit.

It is important to remember that there is no Hauser Diet Type that should consume an over abundance of sugar. Because of the high sugar content in dried fruit, it should always be consumed in moderation.

Whether you decide to snack on dried fruit or cut it out all together, portion size will be key. Just because a package says one serving of dried fruit is ½ cup, doesn’t necessarily mean that you can consider that 1 serving of fruit. If you know that dried fruit is a staple in your diet and you want to get a better idea of how much you can have, give us a call and I’d be happy to tell you.