Health Benefits of Eating Grapes Every Day

Health benefits of grapes

Eating grapes daily can offer numerous health benefits, such as supporting heart health, boosting energy, and aiding hydration. With the prevalence of continuous glucose monitors (CGMs), which help track blood sugar levels, there have been various claims on social media regarding foods that may spike blood sugar. Grapes, in particular, have been scrutinized, with some “health coaches” advising those with prediabetes, diabetes, or those seeking weight loss to avoid them. However, dietitians affirm that grapes can be part of a balanced diet even for those with diabetes.

“Grapes are a type of fruit that can certainly fit in a balanced, healthy diet,” says Elizabeth Shaw, M.S., RDN, CPT, a registered dietitian nutritionist and founder of Shaw Simple Swaps.

Health Benefits of Grapes

Including grapes as part of your daily fruit intake can provide various health benefits:

Increased Antioxidant Intake

Grapes contain antioxidants like polyphenols and anthocyanins, which support gut health and circulation. These antioxidants help protect against chronic inflammation, diabetes, certain cancers, and heart disease. Darker grapes, such as black Concord and purple varieties, tend to have higher antioxidant levels, but all grape types are beneficial.

“Grapes with the darker purple or black hue contain higher levels of anthocyanins, a type of antioxidant that helps combat free radicals that over time can do damage to your cells and DNA,” Shaw explains.

Improved Brain and Heart Health

Antioxidants in grapes combat free radicals that can damage the heart and blood vessels. A December 2021 study in Food Chemistry X linked grape consumption to a lower risk of heart disease and hypertension. Shaw notes that grapes could be considered a “functional food,” potentially part of medical nutrition therapy for hypertension.

Additionally, healthy blood vessels ensure proper oxygen supply to the brain. A small study indicated that individuals with early cognitive decline who consumed 2¼ cups of grapes per day showed improved brain function compared to those who didn’t.

Vitamins and Minerals

Grapes are a good source of vitamin K, potassium, and some vitamin C. Vitamin K benefits blood flow and bone health, while potassium promotes heart health and muscle function. One cup of grapes provides about as much potassium as two-thirds of a medium banana.

Better Sleep

Grapes contain melatonin, the primary sleep-regulating hormone. Consuming grapes can contribute to a better night’s sleep as part of a comprehensive strategy.

Nutritional Value of Grapes

“Grapes are packed with essential carbs, hydration, vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, and polyphenols,” says Roxana Ehsani, M.S., RD, CSSD, a Miami-based board-certified sports dietitian.

According to the USDA, a 1-cup serving of grapes provides

Health benefits of grapes
  • Calories: 104
  • Carbohydrates: 27 grams
  • Dietary fiber: 1.5 grams
  • Total sugar: 23 grams
  • Protein: 1 gram
  • Total fat: 0 grams
  • Saturated fat: 0 grams
  • Sodium: 3 milligrams
  • Potassium: 288 milligrams (8% DV)
  • Vitamin C: 5 milligrams (6% DV)
  • Vitamin K: 22 micrograms (18% DV)

Grapes are about 82% water, aiding hydration, and they contribute to your daily fiber intake, something many people fall short on.

Safety and Considerations

While grape allergies are rare, they do exist. If you have an allergy or intolerance, avoid grapes. Additionally, if you’re on blood thinner medication, consult your healthcare provider as the resveratrol in grapes may affect blood clotting.

“For kids under age 5, whole grapes can pose a choking risk. Cut them into quarters to ensure they can chew and swallow safely,” advises Shaw.

Tips for Enjoying Grapes

Health benefits of grapes

Most adults should aim for 2 to 2½ cups of fruit per day, as recommended by the Dietary Guidelines for Americans. Including grapes in your daily fruit intake is a good choice.

“It’s a good idea to stick to one serving,” Ehsani says. “If you are a grape lover, having multiple servings occasionally is perfectly okay.”

To diversify your diet, try incorporating different fruits throughout the week. Here are some ways to enjoy grapes:

  • Eat them fresh
  • Add to a cheese or charcuterie board
  • Toss into salads
  • Freeze for a refreshing snack
  • Add to sparkling water or wine
  • Blend into smoothies
  • Roast for toppings or dinners
  • Simmer into chutney

Summary

“Grapes often get a bad rap as being too sweet or sugary, but they are a nutrient-dense fruit and can be included in a healthy diet,” Ehsani says.

Grapes can support brain and heart health, boost immunity, and provide essential vitamins and minerals. With their carb content and high water level, they offer a quick, easy, and affordable energy boost. Enjoy 1 cup daily if you like, and make sure to include other nutrient-rich fruits in your diet

FAQS

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Scroll to Top