Carbs in Nectarines

Carb Counts, Glycemic Index and Health Benefits of Nectarines

Person holding basket of fresh nectarines and leaves
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Smooth-skinned, sweet-tart nectarines are a juicy summer treat. But if you're following a low carb diet, you need to remember that they have carbs just like any other fruit. Find out how many carbs are in nectarines, and some of their health benefits.

Carbohydrate and Fiber Counts for Nectarines

Nectarines have a nearly identical nutrition profile to peaches. As with all whole fruits, it's important to pay attention to the size of the fruit.

A medium nectarine is only 2½ inches in diameter, and yet counts as a single carb serving.

  • ½ cup sliced nectarines: 6 grams effective (net) carbohydrate,1 gram fiber, 31 calories.
  • 1 medium nectarine (2½ inches in diameter): 13 grams effective (net) carbohydrate, 2 grams fiber, 62 calories.

Glycemic Index for Nectarines

The glycemic index gives you an idea of which foods raise your blood glucose fastest and highest. Eating pure glucose is given a ranking of 100 -- all other foods are in relation to this. So a food with a glycemic index of 95 raises blood sugar almost as much as pure glucose, but a food with a glycemic index of 20 doesn't raise blood sugar much at all.

The glycemic index of nectarines has not been measured, however it is often assumed to be similar to peaches. Study results for peaches have ranged between 28 to 56, with an average of 42.

More Information about the Glycemic Index

Glycemic Load of Nectarines

The glycemic load of a food tells how much eating that food raises blood glucose. It is a similar concept as theglycemic index, except it takes serving sizes into account. The formula is to take the number of grams of carbohydrate in the serving, multiply by the glycemic index, and divide by 100.

Theoretically, if a food has glycemic load of one point, it would raise the blood sugar as much as one gram of glucose. This is the glycemic load of nectarines:

  • ½ cup of sliced nectarine: 2.5
  • 1 medium nectarine (2½ inches in diameter): 5

Health Benefits of Nectarines

Nectarines are a good source of vitamin C, and they also deliver vitamin A, potassium and beta carotene. They, like peaches, also have significant amounts of phytochemicals -- plant-based compounds that are linked to various health benefits.

More Information About Nectarines at Calorie Count Plus.

Selecting and Storing Nectarines

Nectarines are usually picked when they aren't yet ripe and are hard. To find a ripe nectarine, look for ones with vivid color all the way to the stem end (no green) and a sweet fruity fragrance. Watch out for nectarines that have been bruised or have soft spots.

Nectarines will continue to ripen at room temperature (unless they are picked when they are immature), and this process can be sped up by putting them in paper bag.

You can store nectarines in the refrigerator to keep them from getting overly ripe, but they're tastiest and juiciest eaten at room temperature. If you aren't going to be able to eat your nectarines before they over-ripen, wash them, cut them into slices, and freeze in a zip-type freezer bag.

More Carb Profiles:

Sources: Leroux, MarcusFoster-Powell, Kaye, Holt, Susanna and Brand-Miller, Janette. "International table of glycemic index and glycemic load values: 2002." American Journal of Clinical Nutrition. Vol. 76, No. 1, 5-56, (2002).

USDA National Nutrient Database for Standard Reference, Release 20.

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