As the "fruit of the Gods," the most vital ingredient in wine, and a food that you can eat like popcorn, grapes remain widely popular. Some people prefer black grapes over red grapes, but all types of this fruit provide health benefits, ranging from antioxidant properties to cancer protection.
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Red and Black Grapes' Nutrients
An October 2015 nutrition education review published in the Iranian Journal of Public Health found that a sufficient intake of fruits and vegetables leads to fewer chronic diseases and better bodyweight management. The researchers point out that the World Health Organization recommends adults consume at least five servings of fruits and vegetables per day, excluding starchy vegetables.
Adding grapes to your diet can serve as a colorful, tasty way to reach this recommended daily dosage. As an added bonus, grapes are one of the easiest fruits to eat as they require little preparation. If you need help deciding the best type to buy and eat, here are the differences in nutritional value of red vs. black grapes:
According to the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), one cup of European-style red grapes (or 151 grams) contains 104 calories. This is consistent with a typical serving of any fresh fruit, which generally contains around 100 calories. A cup of red grapes contains the following nutrients:
- 1.09 grams of protein for the structure and support of cells
- 0.24 total lipid fats to store energy
- 27.33 grams of carbohydrates to provide energy
- 1.4 grams of fiber to aid digestion
- 23.37 grams of total sugars, an important source of energy
- 15 grams of calcium for bone growth
- 0.54 grams of iron to carry healthy red blood cells
To compare red grapes to black grapes, one cup of black seedless grapes contains only 60 calories versus 104 for red grapes. In addition, you won't get hit with as many carbohydrates or total sugars, according to the USDA. Here is the black grape nutrient breakdown, and how they contrast with red grapes:
0.66 grams of protein, 0.43 grams less than red
0.66 total lipid fats, 0.42
grams more than red
16 grams of carbohydrates, 11.33
less than red
0.6 grams of fiber, 0.8
less than red
15.34 grams of total sugars, 8.03
less than red
13 grams of calcium, 2
less than red* 0.24 grams of iron, 0.3
less than red
You'll also find 100 grams of vitamin A in black grapes, which you won't find in red grapes at all.
Health Benefits of Grapes
All colors of this fruit offer health benefits, but studies show that eating black, dark red or purple grapes will give the biggest boost to your wellbeing:
Antioxidant and anti-cancer properties: The skin of dark-colored grapes contain resveratrol, which is found to reduce inflammation and have a chemopreventive and chemotherapeutic effect on cancers, according to a September 2017 review in NPJ Precision Oncology.
to boost the overall value of resveratrol, you should eat the grapes whole, according to a June 2015 study from the Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences.
Compounds to reduce cholesterol: Consuming red grapes can help protect against cholesterol. In a June 2015 study from Food & Function, researchers found that red grapes lowered total and LDL cholesterol while white grapes didn't have the same effect.
In this study, 69 participants with high cholesterol ate three cups of red or white grapes for eight weeks. Results showed that red grapes had more potent effects, and would make a beneficial fruit choice to prevent cardiovascular diseases.
Overall, red grapes contain more carbohydrates and sugars, and could offer fewer health benefits. But sticking with black or dark red grapes will be more advantageous for your health than consuming white or green grapes.
Read more: 5 Tricky Fruits and How to Eat Them
- United States Department of Agriculture: Basic Report: "09132 Grapes, Red or Green"
- United States Department of Agriculture: Full Report (All Nutrients): "45264280, Black Seedless Grapes, UPC: 81298518150"
- Iranian Journal of Public Health: “Fruit and Vegetable Intake: Benefits and Progress of Nutrition Education Interventions- Narrative Review Article”
- NPJ Precision Oncology: “The Therapeutic Potential of Resveratrol: a Review of Clinical Trials”
- Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences: “Resveratrol, In Its Natural Combination in Whole Grape, For Health Promotion and Disease Management”
- Food & Function: “Comparative Effects of Red and White Grapes on Oxidative Markers and Lipidemic Parameters in Adult Hypercholesterolemic Humans”