Tree-Ripened Peaches

One of the sweet treats for the summer months. Peaches fall into the category of low-glycemic foods and are a great treat for diabetics when eaten in moderation.

According to the Harvard School of Public Health, a 120 gram serving, which is a small peach, has a glycemic index score of 42. A score of 55 or less is a low glycemic index rating, 56 to 69 is a moderate rating, and 70 or above means it’s a high-glycemic food.

 

What is a glycemic index rating?

Carbohydrate is an essential part of our diets, but not all carbohydrate foods are equal. The Glycemic Index (GI) is a relative ranking of carbohydrate in foods according to how they affect blood glucose levels. Carbohydrates with a low GI value (55 or less) are more slowly digested, absorbed, and metabolized. They also cause a lower and slower rise in blood sugar and therefore usually insulin levels as well.

Fresh peaches also offer an abundance of minerals such as calcium, potassium, magnesium, iron, manganese, phosphorous, zinc, and copper. They are low in calories, contain no saturated fat or cholesterol, and are a good source of dietary fiber.
The best peaches are in season from June-August. Georgia and the Carolinas are a great source of fresh peaches in the summer.

 

See the table below for in depth analysis of nutrients:Peaches (Prunus persica), Fresh, Nutritive value per 100 g.
(Source: USDA National Nutrient data base)
Principle Nutrient Value Percentage of RDA
Energy 39 Kcal 2%
Carbohydrates 9.54 g 7%
Protein 0.91 g 1.5%
Total Fat 0.25 g 1%
Cholesterol 0 mg 0%
Dietary Fiber 1.5 g 4%
Vitamins
Folates 4 µg 1%
Niacin 0.806 mg 5%
Pantothenic acid 0.153 mg 3%
Pyridoxine 0.025 mg 2%
Riboflavin 0.031 mg 2.5%
Thiamin 0.024 mg 2%
Vitamin A 326 IU 11%
Vitamin C 6.6 mg 11%
Vitamin E 0.73 mg 5%
Vitamin K 2.6 µg 2%
Electrolytes
Sodium 0 mg 0%
Potassium 190 mg 4%
Minerals
Calcium 6 mg 0.6%
Copper 0.068 mg 7.5%
Iron 0.25 mg 3%
Magnesium 9 mg 2%
Manganese 0.61 mg 3%
Phosphorus 11 mg 2%
Zinc 0.17 mg 1.5%
Phyto-nutrients
Carotene-ß 162 µg
Crypto-xanthin-ß 67 µg
Lutein-zeaxanthin 91 µg

According to a study from Texas A&M, stone fruit like peaches, plums, and nectarines have been shown to ward off obesity-related diseases such as diabetes, metabolic syndrome, and cardiovascular disease.

Dr. Luis Cisneros-Zevallos, Texas A&M associate professor and AgriLife Research food scientist, states that their studies have shown stone fruits have bioactive and phenolic compounds with anti-obesity and anti-inflammatory properties that may also reduce the bad cholesterol (LDL) associated with cardiovascular disease. He attributes the benefits to four major phenolic groups in stone fruits: anthocyanins, chlorogenic acids, quercetins, and catechins, all of which work together and complement each other to fight off obesity-related illness.