General Fruit Nutrition

The following articles focus on the general health benefits of fruit across a wide range of health problems & well-being. Where there’s an article for a particular fruit tree species, it is appended as More Information after that entry. The collection is illustrative rather than exhaustive, & is only a very small proportion of published articles in the ever-expanding research literature given the widespread interest of the scientific community in their benefits with people living longer, non-communicable diseases that develop over a lifetime becoming more common, & the finding that fruit can usually contribute favourably to ameliorating these problems. This realisation is gradually filtering through to the public, & an increasing number of people, starting from a very low base, are seeking out healthy food. We still have far to go, with too much readily available cheap junk or ultra-processed food consumed.

Acute deficiency problems of vitamins, minerals etc in the developed world are now relatively rare, but still remain more common in developing countries; eg iron & vitamin A deficiencies affect many millions of people globally. In Australia we’re in the fortunate position of being able to seek out those positive effects of foods over & above malnutrition. Information on these benefits of fruit is widely available, but like so many public health issues, individual adoption can typically be more a matter of willingness to embrace in a sustainable manner than sheer ignorance. We’re all bombarded with information & advice from government & medical agencies, almost daily news items in public media, health magazines etc. Unfortunately some of this information is not fully reliable or is over-hyped, with some being quite biased or even misleading due to eg a lack of appropriate nutritional knowledge, commercial interests, self-promotion, or simply seeking media attention. Social media with its typical 3 liners & lack of moderation, does not lend itself well to objectively exploring the many aspects of food nutrition.

Each article draws on one or more published studies that are paraphrased, & includes some explanatory commentary on findings.