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During the ripening of apples and other fruits, starches turn into sugar and produce that sweet taste you know and love. The most common apple varieties produced in the United States are Red Delicious, Gala, Golden Delicious, Granny Smith and Fuji apples. While some varieties may taste sweeter than others, they contain about the same amount of sugar per serving.
Sugar Content of Apple Varieties
One cup of sliced Granny Smith apples contains 10.45 grams of sugar, offering the lowest amount among popular varieties. In order of increasing sugar content, next are the Golden Delicious, Gala, Red Delicious and finally Fuji apple providing the highest sugar content of 12.73 grams per cup. A whole apple contains a different amount of sugar than a cup of sliced fruit. For example, while an average cup of apple slices weighs about 109 grams, a whole apple may be between 129 and 260 grams depending on the variety and size.
- One cup of sliced Granny Smith apples contains 10.45 grams of sugar, offering the lowest amount among popular varieties.
Concerns About Fruit Sugar
Side Effects of Cherry Fruit Extract
The fructose content in fruit is not the same as that in high fructose corn syrup or sugar in baked goods and sweetened beverages 5. While consuming too many sugar- or corn syrup-sweetened items can contribute to excess calories leading to weight gain, diabetes, metabolic syndrome, high triglyceride levels and overall increased risk for heart disease, it is much more difficult to consume a harmful amount of fructose from fruit. Fruit also provides fiber that slows the absorption of sugar into your bloodstream, keeping you full and energized for longer than you would feel after eating baked goods or processed foods.
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- USDA National Nutrient Database Fruit and Fruit Juices: Sugars
- UCSF Benioff Children's Hospital: Why Fiber Is So Good for You
- Asia Pacific Journal of Clinical Nutrition: Important Basics Food Charts -- 6: Carbohydrate
- United States Department of Agriculture: Economics, Statistics and Market Information System: U.S. Apple Statistics
- MayoClinic.org: What Is High-Fructose Corn Syrup? What Are the Health Concerns?
- Popkin BM, Hawkes C. Sweetening of the global diet, particularly beverages: patterns, trends, and policy responses. Lancet Diabetes Endocrinol. 2015;4(2):174-186. doi:10.1016/S2213-8587(15)00419-2
- New Hampshire Department of Health and Human Services. How much sugar do you eat?. Updated August 2014.
- DeSilver D. How America's diet has changed over time. Pew Research Center. Updated December 13, 2016.
- Lakhan SE, Kirchgessner A. The emerging role of dietary fructose in obesity and cognitive decline. Nutr J. 2013;12:114. doi:10.1186/1475-2891-12-114
- Djiogue S, Nwabo Kamdje AH, Vecchio L, et al. Insulin resistance and cancer: the role of insulin and IGFs. Endocr Relat Cancer. 2013;20(1):R1-R17. doi:10.1530/ERC-12-0324
- Page KA, Chan O, Arora J, et al. Effects of fructose vs glucose on regional cerebral blood flow in brain regions involved with appetite and reward pathways. JAMA. 2013;309(1):63-70. doi:10.1001/jama.2012.116975
- Goran MI, Ulijaszek SJ, Ventura EE. High fructose corn syrup and diabetes prevalence: a global perspective. Glob Public Health. 2013;8(1):55-64. doi:10.1080/17441692.2012.736257
- Walker RW, Dumke KA, Goran MI. Fructose content in popular beverages made with and without high-fructose corn syrup. Nutrition. 2014;30(7-8):928-35. doi:10.1016/j.nut.2014.04.003
- American Heart Association. Added sugars. Updated April 17, 2018.
Based in Berkeley, Calif., Registered Dietitian Joelle DiTucci received her Master's degree in nutrition, and enjoys her work as an eating disorder dietitian, support group leader, writer and a Rise coach. Her main interests are in recipe creation, disordered eating, psychology and intuitive eating.