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Recommended Servings of Fruit Per Day

by
author image Kathryn Vera
Kathryn Vera holds a master's degree in exercise physiology, as well as licensure as a Registered Dietitian. Currently, she works as a Clinical Exercise Physiologist in Cardiac Rehabilitation, where she provides care to patients living with chronic heart disease.
Recommended Servings of Fruit Per Day
A bowl of fruit salad and a fruit smoothie on a gingham tablecloth. Photo Credit Yury_N/iStock/Getty Images

As the old adage goes, "an apple a day keeps the doctor away." In fact, incorporating a variety of different types of fruit into your diet -- like oranges, grapes, melon, and berries -- is essential for those who want to maintain good health. The United States Department of Agriculture reports that people who eat large amounts of fruit can decrease their risk of health disease, stroke and other chronic health conditions. Meet the daily recommendations of fruit for the best results when it comes to health promotion.

Daily Recommendations for Fruit

According to the United States Department of Agriculture, the amount of fruit you need in your diet is affected by your sex, age and the amount of exercise you get on a daily basis. On average, adult women over the age of 19 years need 1 1/2 to 2 cups of fruit per day, and their male counterparts need 2 cups. In contrast, children from ages 2 to 8 years, girls between the ages of 9 and 18 years, and their male counterparts need 1 to 1 1/2, 1 1/2, and 1 1/2 to 2 cups of fruit per day, respectively. People who engage in more than 30 minutes of exercise each day may be able to add more fruit to their diet, while staying within their caloric needs.

Types of Fruit

Understanding which types of fruits to add to your diet is important if you want to meet daily recommendations. The U. S. Department of Agriculture reports that fresh, canned, frozen, and dried fruits are all acceptable choices for a healthy diet. Fruit can be eaten in a number of forms, including cubed, pureed or juiced -- as long as it is 100 percent fruit juice. Experiment with a variety of fruits to stimulate your taste buds and maximize your nutritional intake.

What Counts as a Cup?

Familiarize yourself with serving sizes for the best results when it comes to meeting fruit recommendations. In general, while one cup of fresh fruit or fruit juice correlates directly to a "one cup" serving size, the same is not true in regard to dried produce. In fact, a half-cup of dried fruits is categorized as a cup of fruit when it comes to serving size, reports the U. S. Department of Agriculture. Review fruit serving size charts, such as the one offered at the U. S. Department of Agriculture, for more information when it comes to meeting daily fruit requirements.

Incorporating Fruit in Your Diet

Meeting daily recommendations for fruit can sometimes be challenging, especially for those who do not regularly eat fruit. Keep fruit on the table, counter top, or near the front of a refrigerator shelf, where it can serve as a daily reminder to take a bite. Purchasing convenience fruits, such as those which are already cut-up and packaged, can be beneficial if you're on a tight schedule. Buying fresh fruits when they are in the peak season is an effective way to cut down on their cost, and lower your total grocery bill.

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