Are grapes good for weight loss?

by | Nov 29, 2022 | Last updated Dec 16, 2022

  • Grapes have a low caloric density, which means they have fewer calories per volume.
  • Research indicates these small fruits have anti-carcinogenic and anti-inflammatory benefits.
  • Different types of grapes have slightly different nutritional compositions.

You might have heard through the grapevine that grapes are good for weight loss—and for good reason.

Grapes are considered good for weight loss because they have a high water content, making them lower in calories, but still able to satisfy your hunger. Despite their small size, grapes are loaded with plant-based compounds that support your overall health.

At Noom, we love grapes and fully support adding them into a weight loss program. Let’s walk through why we’re grape fans and how eating grapes supports losing weight.

Note: Consult your health care provider before making any dietary changes.

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How good are grapes for weight loss? 

Like most fruits, grapes are a good choice for people looking to lose weight. 

Studies show that eating more fruit daily reduces the likelihood of weight gain. This is because fruits contribute to feelings of fullness without a significant number of calories. 

Additionally, compounds known as phytochemicals in fruits have been shown to have anti-obesity effects.

Still, eating grapes doesn’t guarantee weight loss, and it’s just one part of a weight loss program. What you eat the rest of the time also matters.

If you like grapes and are trying to lose weight, go ahead and eat them. But aim for a balanced diet that includes various sources of complex carbohydrates, lean proteins, and unsaturated fats to see long-term results.

And don’t forget that in order to see progress on the scale, you’ll need to maintain a healthy caloric deficit. In other words, your body has to burn more calories than it takes in. 

You can use our calorie deficit calculator to find out what that should look like for you. But make sure to also talk to your doctor to determine a calorie deficit goal that’s right for your body.

Why can grapes help you lose weight?

We know that grapes are considered good for weight loss. But what exactly is it about this fruit that supports shedding pounds?

Low caloric density

Like watermelon, grapes are made up of mostly water. This reduces their caloric density while making them highly satiating—all without putting a significant dent in your daily calorie intake.

The resulting fullness helps keep you from reaching for snacks with a higher caloric density that may prevent you from hitting your personal caloric deficit needed to reach your weight loss goal.

You can clearly see the impact of water content on calories when comparing the same serving of grapes with raisins, which only have a 15% water content.

That’s a 600% difference in calories—and the raisins wouldn’t satisfy your hunger in the same way the grapes could because of this higher caloric density.

At Noom Weight, we classify grapes as a “green” food on our three-color system, which indicates a food item with the lowest caloric density and/or highest nutrition concentration.

Fiber helps you stay full

Grapes are a source of fiber, and studies show that greater fiber intake is connected to greater weight loss. 

Research notes that fiber impacts “appetite regulation” because it expands when it comes in contact with water in the stomach—which leads to a sensation of fullness. 

Fiber also increases the time your body spends digesting food. And the longer food remains in your system, the longer you’ll feel full. That satiety boost will help you prevent overeating, so you’ll stay on track with your weight loss goals.

One cup of grapes has 0.8 gram of dietary fiber. While it’s a small amount, every bit counts when aiming to reach the USDA recommendation of 14 grams of fiber per 1,000 calories. 

Satisfies your sweet tooth 

At Noom Weight, we encourage people to satisfy their cravings in moderation. This way, you don’t deprive yourself, and you can still stay on track to meet your weight loss goals. 

If you find yourself craving something sweet, it’s not a bad option to turn to fruit like grapes. 

The natural sugars in grapes will satisfy your sweet tooth, without significantly spiking your blood sugar levels. Most grapes have a low glycemic index, and a Harvard School of Public Health study notes that eating grapes reduces the risk of type 2 diabetes.

By eating grapes, you’ll also curb the desire to reach for foods and beverages with high added sugars, which can cause weight gain

Grapes do have 15 grams of sugar per cup, but their natural sugar doesn’t have the same side effects as added sugar.

Of course, make sure to check with your doctor or health care provider if you have any health conditions that impact how much sugar you should eat.

How many grapes should you eat per day to lose weight?

There’s no “right” serving size of grapes that you should eat to support weight loss. 

We do recommend following the USDA recommendation of 1.5 to 2 cups of fruit daily for women or 2 to 2.5 cups for men—but your fruit intake shouldn’t solely include grapes.

It’s best to eat a variety of fruits. This way, you get the most diverse range of nutrients, and healthy eating doesn’t feel boring. The more you enjoy your weight loss diet, the more likely you are to stick to it.

What other health benefits do grapes have?

Despite their small size, the health benefits of grapes are plenty. These fruits are packed with plant-based compounds that support your overall health and wellness.

Reduced risk of certain cancers

Studies suggest that resveratrol, an antioxidant present in the skin of grapes, has anti-carcinogenic effects.

According to the American Institute for Cancer Research, resveratrol “inhibits all stages of development and progression” of cancers like skin, breast, colorectal, prostate, liver, and lung. 

Keep in mind that you’d need to consistently eat a lot of grapes to get a significant amount of resveratrol in your body.

Grapes also have a high concentration of flavonoids, a natural compound that has been shown to suppress cancer cells from spreading.

Lower LDL cholesterol

A specific type of flavonoid in grapes called proanthocyanidins has been shown to help control cholesterol.

Grapes also have pectin, a type of soluble fiber that can lower LDL cholesterol levels.

Reduced blood pressure

Grapes are low in sodium and high in potassium, which both regulate blood pressure.

Studies also suggest that various phenolic compounds in grapes can lower blood pressure, too.

Improved heart health

Research suggests that the phenolic compounds in grapes can reduce inflammation and impact key risk factors for cardiovascular disease.

Additionally, resveratrol and another grape antioxidant, quercetin, are thought to help prevent heart disease.

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A healthier you, wherever you are.

What are the best grapes for weight loss?

Different grape varieties are roughly the same in terms of caloric density, so there’s no single grape that’s better for weight loss.

However, grapes do vary in their overall nutritional value. Darker-colored grapes like Concord and purple have a significantly higher antioxidant capacity than red and green grapes.

What are the best ways to prepare grapes for weight loss? 

You don’t need to do anything to grapes to enjoy them as part of a healthy diet. Eating them plain is actually the best low-calorie approach for weight loss.

Prioritize eating whole grapes over drinking beverages like grape juice. While whole grapes just have 15 grams of sugar per cup, grape juice has 36 grams—and juice won’t fill you up as much.

If you’re looking for ways to vary your meals, here are a few fun and healthy ways to enjoy grapes during your weight loss journey.

Wash and eat them off the vine

Plain grapes are a low-hassle snack that you can easily take with you on the go. 

In warmer months, try frozen grapes for a sweet, cool treat.

Pair them with other fruits or vegetables

Try making your own fruit salad—grapes work well alongside fruits like apples, blueberries, grapefruits, and strawberries. 

Or, for a more savory take, check out this vitamin-packed recipe for roasted Brussels sprouts, walnuts, and grapes.

Add them to a savory, lean protein dish

By adding grapes a high-protein meal, you’ll add a burst of sweetness while ensuring that you’re full and satisfied.

Try a Greek yogurt chicken salad for your next lunch. Or elevate dinner with this New York Times sheet-pan chicken with shallots and grapes recipe.

Want to know more of the best fruits for weight loss? 

Grapes are a great fruit to eat to support sustainable weight loss, but they’re not the only fruit that can support your wellness goals. 

There is a rainbow of different fruits you can add to your diet to keep things interesting as far as flavors go when you’re trying to lose weight. And they have a wide variety of vitamins and minerals, too. 

The next time you go grocery shopping, consider adding these top fruits for weight loss to your list.

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