Low Calorie Fruits

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Learn how many calories are in fruit.

Fruits are, in general, a nutrient-dense food. Nutrient-dense foods offer more nutrients, such as vitamins, minerals and water, per calorie than other foods. The opposite of nutrient-dense foods are empty-calorie foods, which, despite the name, offer lots of calories and few nutrients.

Regardless of the time of year, you can enjoy some type of in-season fruit. In general, the less processed a fruit is, the lower in calories it tends to be. Whole fruits are the best option. Fruits (and vegetables) contain more water than other foods. However, fruits are typically higher in calories than most vegetables because they are rich in fructose or fruit sugar, putting them into the ‘simple carbohydrate’ category.

Simple carbohydrates are more rapidly absorbed than their complex counterparts, providing quick energy. Most unprocessed, whole fruits are relatively low in calories, with the exception of dried, sweetened fruits, avocados and fruit juices. By law, as regulated by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), to be labeled a “low-calorie food” the item must provide up to 40 calories per serving. For the purposes of this article, fruits will be separated into three categories, keeping the caloric maximum at 45 calories per specified serving.

How far does ‘low-calorie’ go with fruits? Which kinds/how much do I get?

Low calorie fruits: 40 or fewer calories per serving or whole fruit

  • Apple, raw, unpeeled – 40 calories for ½ of a 2¾” diameter fruit
  • Apricots, fresh, 2 medium – 40 calories
  • Avocado, Florida, raw without skin or seed – 34 calories for 1 oz or ⅕ of a whole fruit
  • Blackberries, raw, fresh, ½ cup – 37 calories
  • Blueberries, raw, fresh, ½ cup – 40 calories
  • Cantaloupe, 1 wedge – 24 calories for ⅛ of a 5” diameter melon
  • Carambola (star fruit), raw/whole – 30 calories for a fruit 3⅝” long
  • Clementine, fresh, 1 small – 35 calories
  • Cherries, sour, raw (without pit), ½ cup – 38 calories
  • Fruit cocktail, water-packed, solids and liquids, ⅓ cup – 36 calories
  • Grapefruit, fresh, pink or red, ½ of a whole fruit – 37 calories for a 3¾” diameter fruit
  • Grapefruit, fresh, white, ½ of a whole fruit – 39 calories for a 3¾” diameter fruit
  • Grapes, seedless, raw, ½ cup – 40 calories
  • Guava, common, raw, without refuse – 37 calories for a 2-oz fruitHoneydew melon, fresh, cubed, ⅔ cup – 40 calories
  • Kumquats, raw, without refuse – 39 calories for 3 pieces
  • Lemon, raw, without peel – 17 calories for a 2⅛” diameter fruit with peel
  • Lychee, raw, without refuse – 31 calories for ¼ cup
  • Mango, fresh, raw, peeled – 35 calories for ¼ of a whole fruit
  • Nectarine, fresh, raw – 35 calories for ½ of a 2¾” diameter fruit
  • Papaya, raw, ½ cup cubed – 27 calories
  • Passion fruit (granadilla), purple, raw (2 fruits at 18 g each) – 34 calories
  • Peach, fresh, raw – 34 calories for a ½ of a large 2¾” diameter fruit
  • Peaches, fresh, raw, ½ cup sliced – 37 calories
  • Pear, fresh, raw – 40 calories for ½ small fruit
  • Pineapple, fresh, ½ cup chunks – 37 calories for a 3” diameter slice
  • Plum, fresh, 1 each – 36 calories for a 2⅛” diameter fruit
  • Pomegranate, raw, arils (seeds/juice sacs only) , ¼ cup – 36 calories
  • Quince, raw, without refuse – 26 calories for ½ of a whole fruit
  • Raspberries, raw, fresh, ⅔ cup – 40 calories
  • Rhubarb, raw, unsweetened, 1 cup diced – 26 calories
  • Strawberries, raw, fresh, ¾ cup sliced – 38 calories
  • Tangerine, fresh, 1 each – 37 calories for a 2⅜” diameter fruit

Other fruits: more than 40 calories for portion specified

  • Banana, raw, peeled – 42 calories for ⅓ large banana (of a 8 to 8⅞” long fruit)
  • Cantaloupe, fresh, cubed, ¾ cup – 42 calories
  • Cherries, sweet, raw (with pit), ½ cup – 43 calories
  • Kiwi fruit, raw, without skin (medium-sized) – 45 calories
  • Orange, fresh, raw, without peel – 43 calories for ½ of a large 3⅛” diameter fruit
  • Raisins, seedless, ½ oz package or 1½ tbsp – 42 calories
  • Watermelon, raw, fresh, 1 cup diced – 45 calories

REFERENCES

  • Food and Drug Administration: Appendix A: Definitions of Nutrient Content Claims.
  • United States Department of Agriculture: Nutritive Value of Foods. PDF



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