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July 18, 2023
February 29, 2024
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Peaches are small fruits with a yellow or white pulp and fuzzy peel. They are often called stone fruits because the inner pulp is covered by a shell that contains edible seeds. Native to Northwest China, peaches have been grown and enjoyed for thousands of years. Peaches can be delicious on their own or mixed with other fruits, such as blueberries or mango.

This article will explore how peaches may impact blood sugar levels and the health benefits of including this fruit in your diet. 

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Glycemic Index Table

Peaches are considered one of the top low glycemic index fruits, with a score of 28.¹ Low glycemic index fruits are often high in fiber and essential nutrients, which is true for the peach. 

Peaches contain less fructose, a naturally occurring sugar found in fruits, than other fruit options. 

While fresh fruit is always the best option, in some geographic areas, fresh peaches are not available. If you purchase canned peaches, be mindful of the ingredients and avoid any varieties that include added sugar, as this drastically increases the glycemic index rating and significantly impacts blood sugar levels.

The below glycemic index and glycemic load data is for 100g of raw, yellow peaches:¹ ²

Glycemic Index

28

Serving Size

100g

Carbohydrate* per Serving (g)

10.1 g

GL per Serving

4.00

Nutritional Facts

Peaches are a low-carb fruit with just 10 grams of carbohydrates per 100 grams. Although its sugar content is relatively high, its fiber content compensates for this and creates a balanced, low glycemic index fruit. Peaches also have a low amount of fat and cholesterol, as well as trace amounts of vitamins A, E, and K.

The below nutritional information is for 100g of raw, yellow peaches.²

Calories

46 kcal

Carbs

10.1 g

Protein

0.91 g

Fiber

1.5 g

Cholesterol

0 mg

Vitamins

A (16 µg), B6 (0.03 mg), C (4.1 mg), Folate ( 6 µg)

Sodium

0 mg

Total Fat

0.27 g

Are Peaches Good for Weight Loss?

Peaches can be a great option if your goal is to lose weight. However, moderation and portion size are key since peaches contain high sugar levels. 

Peaches are high in water and have high fiber content, which will improve satiety levels and help you feel full. Peaches also have no saturated fats, cholesterol, or sodium, making them an ideal choice for those seeking to lose weight. 

Some ways to enjoy peaches include:

  • Eating it as a whole fruit
  • Using it as an ingredient in a fruit salad
  • Combining it with plain Greek yogurt (an excellent source of protein!)
  • Adding peaches to smoothies
  • Pairing peaches with nuts and cheese

Are Peaches Safe for People Living with Diabetes?

Peaches are an excellent choice for people living with diabetes due to their low glycemic index and low glycemic load ratings. Peaches are rich in insoluble fiber that adds bulk to stool and improves digestion. Peaches can also easily relieve constipation, a common ailment for people living with diabetes.

An animal study found that consuming peach juice rich in polyphenols can prevent or reduce the risk factors associated with the development of obesity-related metabolic disorders, such as insulin resistance and high blood sugar levels.¹⁴ 

Another study found that a polysaccharide sugar derived from seasonal peach gum was found effective in controlling post-meal blood sugar levels and is potentially the equivalent of a non-insulin therapy for people living with diabetes.¹⁵

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Allergies

Peach allergies are relatively common and can cause mild to severe allergic reactions. Allergies to peaches typically manifest as oral allergy syndrome (OAS) or pollen-food syndrome. This reaction occurs when the proteins in a peach trigger an immune response in individuals with a sensitivity to birch pollen. Symptoms of OAS include itchiness of the mouth, lips, or throat, swelling, and redness. In severe cases, allergic reactions can cause hives, difficulty breathing, and anaphylaxis. 

The proteins that often cause allergic reactions are found in the fruit’s skin but can also be found in the peach flesh. 

If you suspect an allergy, sensitivity, or intolerance to peaches, please consult a healthcare professional.

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FAQs

What is Glycemic Index?

The glycemic index (GI) is a measure of how quickly a carbohydrate-containing food raises blood sugar levels compared to a reference food, usually glucose. It ranks foods on a scale from 0 to 100, with higher values indicating a faster rise in blood sugar. The glycemic index (GI) scale is typically categorized as follows: Low GI [55 or less], Medium GI [56-69], High GI [70 or higher]. Foods with a high glycemic index digest rapidly and can cause dramatic fluctuations in blood glucose or glucose spikes.

What is Glycemic Load?

Glycemic load (GL) takes into account both the quality (glycemic index) and quantity (carbohydrate content) of carbohydrates in a specific serving of food. It is a measure of how much a particular food will raise blood sugar levels. GL is calculated by multiplying the glycemic index of a food by its carbohydrate content and dividing it by 100. It provides a more accurate representation of the overall impact of a food on blood sugar compared to the glycemic index alone.

Does Peach Spike Insulin?

No, peaches do not typically cause a significant spike in insulin levels. They have a low to moderate glycemic index and contain dietary fiber, which helps regulate blood sugar levels by slowing down the digestion and absorption of carbohydrates. However, portion control and moderation are still important when managing blood sugar levels.

Are Peaches Low Glycemic?

Yes, peaches are considered low glycemic due to their low glycemic index (GI) score of 28-56. This means they have a minimal impact on blood sugar levels and can be a good choice for people with diabetes or those looking to manage their blood sugar levels.

Can People Living with Diabetes Eat Peach?

Yes, people living with diabetes can eat peaches in moderation as they are low in glycemic index and high in fiber. However, it is important to monitor blood sugar levels and consume them as part of a balanced diet.

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References

  1. University of Sydney. (2023, May 1). Glycemic Index – Glycemic Index Research and GI Newshttps://glycemicindex.com/
  2. USDA FoodData Central. (2019, April 1). Food Details - Peaches, yellow, raw. Retrieved from https://fdc.nal.usda.gov/fdc-app.html#/food-details/325430/nutrients
  3. Li G, Zhu Y, Zhang Y, Lang J, Chen Y, Ling W. Estimated daily flavonoid and stilbene intake from fruits, vegetables, and nuts and associations with lipid profiles in Chinese adults. J Acad Nutr Diet. 2013 Jun;113(6):786-94. doi: 10.1016/j.jand.2013.01.018. Epub 2013 Mar 20. PMID: 23522824.
  4. Kahlon, T. S., & Smith, G. (2007). In vitro binding of bile acids by bananas, peaches, pineapple, grapes, pears, apricots and nectarines. Food Chemistry, 101(3), 1046–1051. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.foodchem.2006.02.059
  5. Vásquez-Villanueva, R., Marina, M. L., & García, M. E. (2015). Revalorization of a peach (Prunus persica (L.) Batsch) byproduct: Extraction and characterization of ACE-inhibitory peptides from peach stones. Journal of Functional Foods, 18, 137–146. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jff.2015.06.056
  6. Kim, Han-Soo. (2006). Effects of the Feral Peach (Prunus persica Batsch var. davidiana Max) Extract on the Lipid Compositions and Blood Pressure Level in Spontaneously Hypertensive Rats. Journal of Life Science. 16. 1071-1079. 10.5352/JLS.2006.16.7.1071.
  7. Noratto, G., Martino, H. S., Simbo, S., Byrne, D., & Mertens-Talcott, S. U. (2015). Consumption of polyphenol-rich peach and plum juice prevents risk factors for obesity-related metabolic disorders and cardiovascular disease in Zucker rats. The Journal of nutritional biochemistry, 26(6), 633–641. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jnutbio.2014.12.014
  8. Lemarié, C. A., & Schiffrin, E. L. (2010). The angiotensin II type 2 receptor in cardiovascular disease. Journal of the renin-angiotensin-aldosterone system : JRAAS, 11(1), 19–31. https://doi.org/10.1177/1470320309347785
  9. Belhadj, F., Somrani, I., Aissaoui, N., Messaoud, C., Boussaid, M., & Marzouki, M. N. (2016). Bioactive compounds contents, antioxidant and antimicrobial activities during ripening of Prunus persica L. varieties from the North West of Tunisia. Food chemistry, 204, 29–36. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.foodchem.2016.02.111
  10. Kim, G. J., Choi, H. G., Kim, J. H., Kim, S. H., Kim, J. A., & Lee, S. H. (2013). Anti-allergic inflammatory effects of cyanogenic and phenolic glycosides from the seed of Prunus persica. Natural product communications, 8(12), 1739–1740.
  11. Shin, T. Y., Park, S. B., Yoo, J. S., Kim, I. K., Lee, H. S., Kwon, T. K., Kim, M. K., Kim, J. C., & Kim, S. H. (2010). Anti-allergic inflammatory activity of the fruit of Prunus persica: role of calcium and NF-kappaB. Food and chemical toxicology : an international journal published for the British Industrial Biological Research Association, 48(10), 2797–2802. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.fct.2010.07.009
  12. Koikeda, T., Tokudome, Y., Okayasu, M., Kobayashi, Y., Kuroda, K., Yamakawa, J., Niu, K., Masuda, K., & Saito, M. (2017). Effects of Peach (Prunus persica)-Derived Glucosylceramide on the Human Skin. Current Medicinal Chemistry, 17(1), 56–70. https://doi.org/10.2174/1871522217666170906155435
  13. Kim, Y. H., Yang, H. E., Park, B. K., Heo, M. Y., Jo, B. K., & Kim, H. P. (2002). The extract of the flowers of Prunus persica, a new cosmetic ingredient, protects against solar ultraviolet-induced skin damage in vivo. Journal of cosmetic science, 53(1), 27–34.
  14. Noratto, G., Martino, H. S., Simbo, S., Byrne, D., & Mertens-Talcott, S. U. (2015). Consumption of polyphenol-rich peach and plum juice prevents risk factors for obesity-related metabolic disorders and cardiovascular disease in Zucker rats. The Journal of nutritional biochemistry, 26(6), 633–641. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jnutbio.2014.12.014
  15. Wang, Y., Lin, D., Wang, X., Zhu, W., Ye, J., Li, G., Ma, Z., & Deng, X. (2017). The impact of a novel peach gum-derived polysaccharide on postprandial blood glucose control in streptozotocin-induced diabetic mice. International journal of biological macromolecules, 98, 379–386. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ijbiomac.2017.01.085

About the author

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About the author

Brittany Barry is a national board-certified health coach and NASM-certified personal trainer based in South Carolina.

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Please note: The Signos team is committed to sharing insightful and actionable health articles that are backed by scientific research, supported by expert reviews, and vetted by experienced health editors. The Signos blog is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease. If you have or suspect you have a medical problem, promptly contact your professional healthcare provider. Read more about our editorial process and content philosophy here.

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