This article has been Fact-Checked by Kendall Kennedy MS, RD, RYT
Choosing the right foods for your weight loss diet can be confusing. What about pineapple, is it good for weight loss or fattening?
Pineapple is a tropical fruit pretty popular all around the world.
Like most fruits, many people will benefit in terms of weight loss by eating more pineapple. Find out just how good they are and how they compare to pineapple juice and other fruit options for weight loss.
Micronutrients in pineapple
The first thing to look at are the micronutrients in pineapple.
Micronutrients are a group of nutrients your body absolutely needs to survive and thrive. Micronutrients include vitamins and minerals. These are involved in basically every aspect of your health, including weight loss.
100 grams of pineapple provides you with approximately (1):
- Vitamin C: 80% of the DV (Daily Value)
- Manganese: 46% of the DV
- Copper: 6% of the DV
- Vitamin B6: 6% of the DV
- Folate: 5% of the DV
- Thiamin: 5% of the DV
And a few other vitamins and minerals in smaller amounts. It’s pretty clear what food you want to eat if you are lacking vitamin C and manganese.
In terms of the other vitamins and minerals, pineapple is not that great compared to a lot of other whole foods. That being said, small amounts do add up.
Pineapple also contains a nice amount of antioxidants, substances that can be beneficial for your body by decreasing oxidative stress.
Fiber in pineapple for weight loss
Another very important factor for weight loss is the amount of fiber in your food.
Pineapple contains around 1.4 grams of fiber per 100 grams.
That is a nice amount of fiber per 100 grams compared to many foods.
Fiber has multiple benefits. First of all, it feeds your microbiome, the microbes that live in your intestines. The health of your microbiome influences your body’s health and weight. Feeding it well is usually not a bad idea.
Fiber also helps you feel less hungry without adding a lot of calories to your diet. Hunger and cravings can be a big pitfall for people trying to lose weight, so avoiding this is a big plus.
With the amount of fiber in pineapple you can reduce the time you spend craving for food a nice amount.
Does pineapple help you lose weight?
You still need a final piece of the puzzle. The amount of calories in pineapple.
Pineapple contains 50 calories per 100 grams. 47.2 of these calories come from the carbohydrates (13.1 g per 100 grams of which 1.4 g fiber).
Pineapple is not the greatest for low carb diets like the keto diet but you should be able to fit some in if you want.
The amount of calories in pineapple is not that high in general. There are both lower-calorie fruits and higher calorie fruits. Compared to many vegetables pineapple is a little higher in calories.
That being said, pineapple is still generally a very low-calorie food that can help you feel fuller with its fiber content. This can benefit you by helping you avoid higher-calorie foods. For most people that, and thus eating more pineapple, is enough to help them lose weight.
If you don’t like pineapple you don’t have to go out of your way to force it into your daily eating habits, pineapple is not some unique weight loss food. Other foods can be better for weight loss.
If you are gaining weight while eating pineapple, the first place to look at is the rest of your diet and other lifestyle habits. Pineapple is generally not fattening.
When should you eat pineapple to lose weight?
The calories in pineapple are mainly from carbohydrates. Carbohydrates raise insulin. Insulin in turn can mess with the production of sleep hormones. Sleep is important for your weight loss and health.
That’s one of the reasons why you preferably want to consume pineapple earlier in the day or at least not at night, right before bedtime.
Pineapple won’t be that fattening at night that it means the end of your weight loss journey but you preferably want to stop eating this fruit a while before bedtime.
How much pineapple should you eat?
Nutrition is always a bit of a puzzle in terms of what the perfect diet looks like. It’s a pretty individual thing.
Consuming enough micronutrients is important for both your short and long-term health and weight loss. Pineapple doesn’t help you reach your daily micronutrient goals that much so you will need other foods as well.
That’s why something like the pineapple diet, mostly eating pineapple, is just plain bad for your short and long term health and weight loss.
If you have consumed enough micronutrients you can see how much pineapple still fits within your daily calories. The amount will be different from individual to individual from day to day, it can be 0 too.
Healthiest ways to eat pineapple
Pineapple makes for a great snack on its own but it also combines great with other healthy foods. Here are some healthy dishes you can combine with pineapple:
If you are looking to lose weight you want to avoid dishes with pineapple like pizza, cake, and most other baked goods.
Pineapple vs pineapple juice for weight loss
If you’re only looking at calories, pineapple juice contains about the same amount of calories per 100 grams. Pineapple contains around 50 calories per 100 grams vs the 53 calories per 100 grams of pineapple juice (2).
Keep in mind that this is a more “pure” pineapple juice. The pineapple juice you buy at the store usually contains added sugar and sweeteners which are not great for weight loss.
Pineapple juice contains a lot less fiber. Pineapple contains around 1.4 grams of fiber per 100 grams, pineapple juice 0.2 grams. Lastly, pineapple juice does contain slightly more vitamins and minerals.
The main problem with pineapple juice for weight loss is that it is a liquid. Only a single glass of pineapple juice is already 200 grams. Just imagine the difference in fulness between 100 grams of potato vs half a glass of water.
Calorie rich drinks like fruit juices are almost never a good idea if you’re looking to lose weight. By juicing you remove the fiber from food which is arguably the most useful nutrient for weight loss.
In general, it’s a lot easier to overconsume calories with drinks than with whole foods. This also applies to pineapple vs pineapple juice.
Pineapple vs other popular fruits for weight loss
You now know how good pineapple is for weight loss but how does it compare to certain other fruits? Find out how good pineapple is for weight loss vs apples, watermelon, oranges, and papaya.
Pineapple vs apples
The first comparison is pineapple vs apples. Apples are negligibly higher in calories than pineapple, 52 calories per 100 grams vs the 50 calories per 100 grams of pineapple (3).
Apples contain around 2.4 grams of fiber per 100 grams so a reasonable amount higher than pineapple. Pineapple contains more vitamins and minerals than apples with the main focus on vitamin C and manganese.
All in all, apples will likely be better for weight loss than pineapple.
Pineapple vs watermelon
Watermelon is another very popular fruit, certainly in the summer months. If you’re only looking at calories watermelon contains less. Pineapple contains around 50 calories per 100 grams vs the 30 calories per 100 grams of watermelon (4).
Pineapple contains around 1.4 grams of fiber per 100 grams, watermelon 0.4 grams. Pineapple contains slightly higher amounts of vitamins and minerals.
It’s not entirely clear how the difference between pineapple and watermelon impacts weight loss. Pineapple is higher in calories than watermelon but also higher in important weight loss nutrient fiber.
Pineapple vs oranges
There is a reasonable difference in the amount of fiber in these fruits. Oranges have about 2.4 grams of fiber per 100 grams vs pineapple with 1.4 grams. Pineapple is very slightly higher in vitamins and minerals.
Oranges are likely slightly better for weight loss than pineapple.
Pineapple vs papaya
Papaya contains slightly more fiber, 1.8 grams per 100 grams. Finally, these 2 fruits are very similar when it comes to vitamins and minerals.
Papaya will be slightly better for weight loss than pineapple.
Chart of pineapple vs other popular fruits
All in all, the differences between these fruits won’t make that much of a difference when it comes to losing weight. If you like all these fruits equally you might as well choose the ones that are slightly better for weight loss.
The amount of vitamins and minerals in the foods does matter for weight loss and health but you can’t simplify that in one number. You can check out the numbers for pineapple (1), apples (3), watermelon (4), oranges (5) and papaya (6) to compare.
|Values Per 100g||Pineapple||Apples||Watermelon||Oranges||Papaya|
|Calories||50 calories||52 calories||30 calories||47 calories||39 calories|
|Fiber||1.4 g||2.4 g||0.4 g||2.4 g||1.8 g|