Lower your teeth into this juicy fruit for a sweet taste of summer. Fresh peaches are not only delicious, they are also accompanied by many health benefits. Grab a peach on the go or conjure up one of our delicious recipes to use peaches for weight loss and enjoy a healthy, sweet and balanced summer diet.
Read on to find out exactly why you should bite into this sweet fruit and enjoy the many benefits of consuming peaches for weight loss:
1. Low in calories
According to the US Department of Agriculture (USDA), a medium-sized peach weighs only 58 calories – and like many fresh fruits, it contains less than ½ gram of fat, with no sodium or cholesterol. While it’s true that peaches and other fruits contain sugar, that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t eat them. Sugar occurs naturally in peaches and other fruits; the variety that is used in soda, cake and chocolate bars is processed or refined. Both types are broken down in your body to produce energy. However, refined sugar gets into the bloodstream very quickly, which causes blood sugar levels to rise and then crash. Low blood sugar signals to the body that it needs more energy or more sugar – which experts say can start a vicious circle of sugar cravings. The sugars naturally found in fruits are also packed with a number of healthy nutrients that help slow the absorption of sugar into your blood.
2. Rich in filler fibers
You get 2 grams of fiber per peach – half of which is soluble fiber and half of which is insoluble. According to the Mayo Clinic, soluble fiber helps keep blood sugar levels constant, while insoluble fiber makes digestion easier. And overall, foods high in fiber tend to be more filling, so you are likely to feel full longer. Research published in The Lancet found that consuming 25 to 30 grams of fiber per day can help you lose weight and lower blood pressure and sugar levels.
3. Packed with water
A peach is 88% water – which makes it a food with a low energy density. Energy density is the number of calories (or energy) in a given amount of food, according to the Mayo Clinic. High energy density means lots of calories in little food; a low energy density is the opposite – few calories in many foods. A high water content in fruits like peaches adds volume and weight so you feel full with fewer calories.
4. Loaded with disease-fighting nutrients
This flaky fruit is a good source of vitamin C, which boosts your immune system, and vitamin A, which promotes healthy eyesight. It also contains potassium (which is good for your heart), iron, and antioxidants – plant compounds that help protect your body from aging and disease. The more ripe the fruit, the more antioxidants it contains, according to Plant Foods for Human Nutrition.
Research from Texas A&M AgriLife found that stone fruits – such as peaches, plums, and nectarines – have been shown to ward off obese diseases such as diabetes, metabolic syndrome, and cardiovascular disease. Enjoy these fruits fresh or preserved in water – on Food system, a medium-sized fruit, or a cup of canned peaches counts as one SmartCarb.
Get your peach filling this season by making one of these delicious (and peach colored) recipes:
1. Peach Buzz Bagel Sandwich>
What better way to start the morning than with juicy peach slices and a dash of honey? That sweet feeling sits on top of creamy cottage cheese and a soft-baked, high-fiber one Nutrisystem honey and wheat bagels for a filling breakfast sandwich with 320 calories.
2. Peach and Honey Whipped Ricotta>
It’s rich, nutritious, and quick to make: just mix honey with ricotta and a hint of almond flavor for a sweet base. Add in juicy grilled peaches and voila – sheer delicacy that delivers eight grams of muscle building protein. On Nutrisystem, this flex snack counts as a PowerFuel and a SmartCarb.
3. Skinny Peach Cobbler>
Sure, you can have your cobbler and eat him too: This healthy variant of a classic consists of soft, juicy peaches sprinkled with nutmeg and brown sugar and baked under a cinnamon-like homemade crust. It seems like you are cheating, but you absolutely are not: each serving contains only 135 calories with no guilt.
4. Blackberry Peach Upside Down Muffin Cake>
Two beautiful summer fruits combine to create a sweet that serves as a perfect breakfast treat or evening dessert and is the perfect way to use peaches for weight loss. Lightweight, super easy to bake, these muffins will satisfy your cake cravings. The bonus: no butter, no sugar, and you eat two for 153 calories. At Nutrisystem, each serving counts as a SmartCarb and a PowerFuel.
5. Peach Melba Pudding>
The peach melba that your grandmother made had peaches, of course, with vanilla ice cream and raspberry sauce. This healthier version keeps the sweet fruit, but is used in non-fat yogurt and raspberry-flavored gelatin to cut down on sugar and fat from the old-fashioned favorite. In addition, this peach treat could take the win for best presentation. Each serving has 111 calories.
6. Peach green ginger smoothie>
Green smoothies are an easy and delicious way to recharge your body with nutrients – and this one is no exception. You get the sweetness of peaches, creaminess from bananas, and lots of fiber, vitamins, and minerals from spinach. Combined with almond milk and freshly grated ginger for a little extra spice, this smoothie is so delicious that you will sip it right away. On Nutrisystem, a smoothie counts as a SmartCarb, a vegetable and an extra.