If you want a delicious way to boost your overall health, protein rich dried fruits may be one of the best options. Most people know that fruits and vegetables are critical elements of a healthy diet, but the sweetness of dried fruits often makes people think of it as candies, rather than nutrient-rich snacks. Quite simply, a dried fruit is a fresh fruit that has its water content removed, typically through sun-drying or with the help of specialized dehydrators that can rapidly eliminate the moisture in the fruit. However, the best thing about dried fruit is that in most cases, it retains the nutrient content present in the fresh form. Some of the vitamin C content is typically lost in dried fruits, but the minerals, fiber, antioxidants and other organic acids remain in place.
The benefit of dried fruit, therefore, is the significant size reduction, and the length of time that you can keep the dried fruit without worrying about it getting spoiled. Despite the slight nutrient reduction, these nutrient-dense bites of your favorite fruits have been a popular snack for thousands of years.
Protein-rich Dried Fruits
Protein rich dried fruits also contain essential vitamins, minerals and other nutrients. Some of the most popular and nutrient-rich dried fruit varieties include apricots, apples, pears, raisins, blueberries, peaches, prunes, lychees, figs, and cranberries.
Nutrition – 1 cup of dried apples contains approximately 2 grams of proteins, as well as 208 calories and 7 grams of fiber. It is also a rich source of vitamin B5 and vitamin B3, as well as vitamin C, copper, magnesium, selenium, potassium and iron.
Health Benefits – This popular form of dried fruit is excellent for digestion, and is often recommended for people who are trying to lose weight. There are notably fewer calories in apples than in many other fruits. Dried apples are also good for boosting neurotransmitter production, and can help to lower blood pressure. The ascorbic acid content is also good for giving the immune system a lift.
Nutrition – There are just over 2 grams of proteins in 1 cup of dried pears, in addition to 470 calories and 14 grams of fiber. You will also get moderate levels of copper, iron, vitamin K and vitamin C. There is also a significant amount of potassium and a low level of sodium in dried pears.
Health Benefits – These popular dried fruits are well known to lower blood pressure, due to the vasodilating properties of potassium, as well as improved circulation and stronger bones. Vitamin C helps to improve the immune function slightly, while vitamin K is an important element in blood clotting and the maintenance of bone mineral density.
Nutrition – Dried apricots contain roughly 4.4 grams of protein in every cup, making it one of the highest dried fruits in this regard. This dried fruit also offers 9 grams of fiber and just over 300 calories, as well as more than 40% of your daily recommended potassium and about 20% of your iron requirements. Apricots are also quite high in vitamin A and various carotenes and antioxidants.
Health Benefits – Dried apricots are an excellent choice if you want to stimulate growth and development, as well as optimize digestion, thanks to the high level of dietary fiber. Relatively low in calories, these fruits are good if you are trying to lose weight, or if you are having trouble with high blood pressure. The vitamin A in them is excellent for vision health and a reduction in oxidative stress, as well as for increasing the blood circulation in the body.
Nutrition – Despite having only 1.5 grams of protein, dried peaches remain extremely healthy for you. There are 380 calories in dried peaches, as well as 13 grams of dietary fiber. This dried fruit also has very high levels of vitamin A and iron, in addition to vitamin C and calcium.
Health Benefits – If you regularly eat dried peaches, you will have a lower risk of chronic disease, thanks to the antioxidants and high levels of vitamin A, as well as optimized digestion and lower cholesterol. Iron is essential for a proper blood circulation, while vitamin C can help your immune system and improve growth and repair in the body.
Nutrition – There are 5 grams of protein in 1 cup of dried figs, along with 380 calories and provides nearly 60% of your dietary fiber needs for each day. This particular type of dried fruit, one of the most popular ones, also provides more than 10% of your daily needs for potassium, vitamin K, iron, magnesium, and calcium.
Health Benefits – With their diverse range of nutrients, dried figs can help lower cholesterol levels and regulate blood sugar, while also cleansing the gastrointestinal tract. These are often used as laxatives, but they can also help to lower blood pressure, aid sleep, strengthen bones and improve blood clotting in people with bleeding disorders.
Nutrition – A cup of dried cranberries contains 370 calories and 6 grams of dietary fiber but there are negligible levels of protein. There are also a limited amount of nutrients or minerals but there are quite a few phytonutrients, which is why some people add them to their diet. However, with their high levels of sugar, dried cranberries are often treated as candies.
Health Benefits – The health benefits of dried cranberries are primarily from their fiber levels, in addition to the antioxidants. These tasty dried fruits are excellent for eliminating constipation and lowering cholesterol levels while helping to regulate the blood sugar in moderate ways.
Nutrition – You will get about 5 grams of protein in a single cup of dried prunes. These fruits are completely lacking in insoluble fiber but have 12 grams of soluble fiber. There are just over 400 calories in a cup of dried prunes, as well as vitamin C, vitamin K, potassium, and copper.
Health Benefits – Regularly eating prunes can help with constipation, as they have a well-known laxative effect. These fruits are most famous for this property but they can also help improve muscle movement and nerve function, as well as give a boost to the immune system and aid in increasing the bone mineral density.
Nutrition – There are roughly 6.5 grams of protein in a 1-cup serving of dried lychee, as well as high levels of vitamin B and nearly 250% of your vitamin C requirements for the day.
Health Benefits – Dried lychee is a bit less common in terms of dried fruits, but it can provide major support to your immune system, and can also help improve your growth and development, due to its unusually high levels of protein.
Nutrition – With 4 grams of protein and 5 grams of fiber in each cup, raisins are a sweet and nutritious treat. They also offer you a healthy amount of potassium, manganese, and iron. However, there are quite a few calories in raisins – 430 per cup, so these should be eaten in moderation to avoid compromising any weight loss goals.
Health Benefits – Raisins are an excellent way to improve your circulation, while they also optimize your digestion and eliminate the symptoms of constipation. It can also aid in hypertension and bone health, due to the presence of manganese and iron.
Nutrition – Regularly eating dried blueberries will provide 3 grams of protein per cup, but they are also very calorie-dense, with roughly 390 calories per cup. However, blueberries are a rich source of antioxidants, as well as contain 6 grams of fiber, calcium, vitamin C and small amounts of iron.
Health Benefits – Like their fresh counterparts, dried blueberries are excellent for boosting the immune system and lowering oxidative stress, while also improving the digestive function, strengthening the bones and stimulating blood circulation, which can help repair the body. These delicious, antioxidant-packed fruits are also good for controlling the symptoms of diabetes.