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List of Vegetables High in Sugar

author image Rhonda Alexander, MS, MA, CFT
Based in Chicago, Rhonda Alexander has written health-related articles since 2006. Her work has appeared in publications owned by the Sun-Times Media. She holds two master's degrees from DePaul University in addition to certifications in personal training and fitness nutrition. Her first book, "Green Smoothie Bliss," will be released 2014.
List of Vegetables High in Sugar
Radishes in a bowl on a wooden table Photo Credit: voltan1/iStock/Getty Images

Vegetables are good for your health, but some of them contain high levels of sugar. Knowing which vegetables have a high glycemic index number and therefore affect the blood sugar faster is valuable information. The higher the glycemic index, the more sugar the food contains and the faster your blood sugar will feel the impact. Among the vegetables that are high in sugar, several fall into these categories: roots, sweet peppers, bulbs and starchy vegetables.

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Serving Size

Stainless steel measuring cups
Stainless steel measuring cups Photo Credit: Warren_Price/iStock/Getty Images

Serving sizes are far less than you might think. If you're eating raw, leafy vegetables, which typically have more water content, 1 cup is a serving. For all other vegetables, stick to 1/2-cup, the American Heart Association's recommended serving size.

Root Vegetables

A bunch of fresh carrots
A bunch of fresh carrots Photo Credit: Frank Cutrara/iStock/Getty Images

Per 100-gram serving, these root vegetables contain upwards of 3.8 grams of sugar: parsnips, carrots, radishes, rutabaga, turnips and beets. Chicory root claims the highest value among root vegetables at 8.7 grams of sugar.

Chili Peppers

Peppers on a wooden surface
Peppers on a wooden surface Photo Credit: svetlana foote/iStock/Getty Images

The vitamin C content of chili peppers provides over 400 percent of the daily value per 100-gram serving, but they also contain 5 grams of sugar. Yellow, orange and red peppers, in contrast, taste sweet, but they only contain 2.4 grams of sugar.

A Look at Bulbs

Onions on a cutting board
Onions on a cutting board Photo Credit: blindfire/iStock/Getty Images

Onions have a reputation for being the most common vegetable on Earth. Their sugar content ranges from almost 4 grams to more than 5 grams of sugar. Green tops (4.95 grams) and sweet onions (5 grams) are among the varieties of onions to use in moderation due to their high sugar content.

Starchy Vegetables

Close up of corn on the cob
Close up of corn on the cob Photo Credit: DAJ/amana images/Getty Images

Starchy vegetables raise your blood sugar more than nonstarchy vegetables. Starchy vegetables are not bad for your health, but they generally contain more sugar than nonstarchy vegetables. The good news is that starchy vegetables contain fiber as well that will fill you up and make you feel fuller, longer. If you’re counting carbs or you are a diabetic, beware that these vegetables contain more sugar than leafy, green vegetables, which contain more water. Examples of starchy vegetables include peas, winter squash, potatoes and corn.

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