Dried fruit has a more concentrated source of nutrients compared to the fresh variety. Consuming dried fruits provides a convenient and quick way to add more nutrient-dense fruits to a diet.
Dried fruits are a great source of concentrated and readily available energy, or simple sugars. Iron, potassium and calcium are bountiful in raisins. Raisins have been shown to improve bone density and promote healthy gums. Dried apricots are plentiful in vitamin A, calcium, iron, magnesium, potassium and phosphorus. According to the American Cancer Society, consuming dried apricots helps to lower the risk of developing esophagus and lung cancer. Dried plums, known as prunes, provide adequate amounts of potassium and copper. Dried fruits also help to combat constipation and urinary tract infections.
It is important to remember that while fruit itself is high in naturally occurring sugar, some dried fruits are full of added sugar for taste. Pineapple, banana chips, cranberries and watermelon are some dried fruits that commonly require added sugars for taste. Some are coated in sugar, some need sugar to combat the tart flavor and some are deep fried then rolled in sugar. An important note to remember is to avoid fruits that resemble candy rather than a healthy snack. Remember to always read the ingredient list to check for added sugars or other unhealthy additives.