The Best Fruits to Eat During the Summer
Did you know that water is one of the main components of fruit? Read this article and find out which fruits are the best alternatives to eat during the hot months of summer.
Fruits are always a good option to eat, and they’re usually present in healthy eating campaigns. In fact, apples are the symbol of healthy food par excellence. What characteristics do fruits have and what are the ideal ones to eat during the summer?
The World Health Organization -WHO- uses different measures to encourage the consumption of fruits and vegetables. The global strategy on diet, physical activity, and health heavily focus on increased consumption of fruits and vegetables and calls for the development of national policies and guidelines in this regard.
The official WHO recommendation on this matter goes as follows:
As part of a healthy diet that is low in fat, sugar and sodium, the WHO recommends consuming more than 400 grams of fruits and vegetables a day to improve overall health and reduce the risk of certain non-communicable diseases.
In Spain, the Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries, and Food are in charge of taking measures to promote the consumption of fruit. In this context, there are several campaigns to increase their inclusion in the diet of the average Spanish citizen.
An example of this was the campaign that took place during 2017, which used the slogan, “Fruits and Vegetables #FromHereAndNow” to promote the consumption of seasonal fruits and vegetables.
Nutritional characteristics of fruits to eat during the summer
Fruits are the infructescence, the seed, or the fleshy pars of floral organs. They must reach the optimum level of ripeness before we can consume them. The good fruits to eat during the summer contain vitamins, minerals, and dietary fiber.
Depending on their shape, they can fit into three main categories: pommel (apple or pear), drupe (those with seeds), and berries (grapes or raspberries). On the other hand, depending on their origin, we can find tropical and subtropical fruits; subtropical fruits are mostly citrus.
Regarding their composition, the main element is water, which represents 70 to 95 percent of the fruit. They also stand out for their carb content, although this varies greatly from one fruit to another and it depends on their level of ripeness.
On the contrary, they contain very little protein, and they also have a low biological value and fat content. The exception to this last statement is avocado and olives.
As for micronutrients, they’re a good source of minerals, vitamins and other elements such as phenolic compounds, which are responsible for their color. Some of these compounds are also bioactive.
Fruits to eat during the summer, month by month
Fruits have a ripening period that depends on the environmental conditions. Although we can consume some varieties that are typical of a certain period throughout the year, both their price and taste can change drastically.
For example, we can consume watermelon all year round, despite it being technically a summer fruit. This happens thanks to greenhouses and intensive agriculture.
Eating seasonal food helps reduce carbon dioxide emissions and supports the sustainability of the earth. Another advantage is the promotion of the local economy and the reduction of food waste. In some markets, they reduce the price of the product as the morning passes to avoid throwing away the surplus.
Summer begins in mid-June, as the heat of the season starts to arrive. June fruits are apricots, cherries, raspberries, strawberries, and watermelon.
Cherries are a fruit with a fairly short season, typical of May and June. One of the most popular varieties is the Picota cherry, which also has a designation of origin.
Apricots, raspberries, strawberries, peaches, melon, blackberries, nectarines, pears, and watermelon belong to the month of July. Pear is one of the most popular fruits throughout the whole year due to all of the varieties that exist. There are winter and summer pears, which require different temperatures to ripen.
August is the month of local festivals par excellence. It usually coincides with the closure of production in many industries. Raspberries, figs, peaches, melon, blackberries, nectarines, and watermelon are typical of this month. Figs are Mediterranean fruits with a short season, that’s why people dry them and consume them for the rest of the year.
September is the last month of the summer. We can get raspberries, pomegranates, figs, apples, peaches, melons, and blackberries for a good price this month.
Blackberries have two varieties: the ones that grow in trees and the ones that grow in bushes. Both varieties are highly coveted for making desserts, cakes, and jams.
In conclusion, we can take advantage of the different seasons to consume a wide variety of fruits and benefit from their properties. Both during the summer and other seasons, try to choose the local market instead of the big chain stores!