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Carbohydrates in Fruit

Are carbohydrates in fruits essential for body.
(April 18, 2008)

Benefits of Carbohydrates in Fruits

Reduction in brain functioning and cognitive performance is seen associated with low carbohydrate diet. Carbohydrates are helpful in building the muscle tissue. The presence of carbohydrates prevents the breakdown of protein, which is referred to as 'protein sparing action' of carbohydrates. Carbohydrates are abundantly seen in fruits. They are eaten raw or in the form of a spicy chaat.

Smoothies and juices are also made. The carbohydrates in the fruits contribute to calories. The level of carbohydrate in various fruits, vary depending on the source and the stage of ripeness. The carbohydrate levels of tinned fruits are greater than the fresh counterparts and this is owed to the sugars added synthetically. Fruits are a good source of fibre and five servings are recommended per day. Berries are one of the most beneficial amidst fruits. Complex carbohydrates are seen as cellulose on the peels and cell walls of the fruits. About 50 to 60 per cent of the daily calories are from carbohydrates. A cup of raw pineapple provides 19 grams of carbohydrates.

Papayas- 14 grams

A medium fruit of nectarine- 16 grams

Cantaloupe- 15 grams

A passion fruit- 4 grams

A large peach- 17 grams

Carbohydrates diet comprises of energy foods or carbohydrates that contribute to calories. It contributes four calories per gram, which is metabolised to blood glucose in the system. Carbohydrates are present in three forms, namely, sugar, fiber and starch. Sugar is a form of carbohydrate, seen in fruits, which helps in many forms. Fruits are also a good source of fiber and, antioxidants and other phyto chemicals. Fruits are a better source of carbohydrate, than vegetables. Fruits with low glycaemic index help to burn fat. They are a better storehouse of other nutrients, such as vitamins and minerals. Low glycaemic index carbohydrates are seen in whole grains, sweet potatoes, oatmeal, in addition to fruits. High glycaemic index foods are not preferred.

Benefits of carbohydrates also include improvement in gut function. It helps in the functioning of the nerves. It also acts as a fuel for the muscles and nerves of the brain.  Dietary fiber is yet another form of carbohydrate seen in fruits. Dietary fiber contributes to a number of benefits, such as improvement in bowel functioning, increase in transit time, increase in satiety, decrease in the risk of obesity, diabetes, constipation, diverticulitis and other complications. Carbohydrates help individuals to maintain the shape and physique of the body. It is especially helpful for athletes and other active people. This is because; carbohydrates are broken down to glycogen, which are ready for breakdown.

High carbohydrate with increase in activity also helps in decreasing the risk of diseases, such as diabetes mellitus, atherosclerosis and so on. Insoluble fiber is seen in plants and whole grains, whereas soluble fiber such as pectin is seen in apples. Soluble fiber helps in the reduction of cholesterol levels. It prevents eating in excess and thereby, curbs excessive intake of calories. This is the reason, fruits are recommended in a carbohydrate diet, rather than fruit juices.

Submitted by E L on April 18, 2008 at 10:55


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