How much fruit can you eat per day and lose weight?


I was recently asked this question on Instagram and I wanted to expand on it because it comes up all the time!

First things first…

I’m not a fan of any diet that gives specific guidelines around how much of a specific food you can have and it’s always a big red flag when I see that kind of guidance because every individual has different nutritional needs and preferences.

It’s impossible to give that kind of guidance without having to make huge generalizations. Remember, nutrition is highly individualized. Your dietary requirements depend on various factors like age, activity level, and health goals. It’s crucial to understand your body’s needs rather than following arbitrary rules.


(I’m going to answer this from the perspective of a weight loss diet because diets that have these types of rules are typically promoting weight loss)

Let’s break this down:

1 Medium Banana (118 grams by weight) has 105 calories + 27 grams of carbs

Let’s say your maintenance calories (AKA your Total Daily Energy Expenditure or TDEE) is 2,000 calories per day.

Calorically, you could eat 19 bananas per day and not gain weight.


Let’s say you aim to get 40% of your daily calories from carbs (which is low by some standards) so your goal is 200 grams of carbs/day.

You could STILL eat 7.5 bananas and not exceed your carb goal.

And what about weight loss?

If your TDEE is 2,000 calories/day, then you might aim for ~1500 calories per day to put you in a deficit for weight loss. If 40% of your calories come from carbs, then you’d need 150 grams of carbs per day. In this scenario, you still have plenty of room for multiple bananas (or other fruit)

Dieters LOVE rules.

(At least … they think they do.)

People always ask me “how much fruit can I have per day” but it’s really not a simple answer because I need to teach YOU how to answer this question for yourself … otherwise you’ll always need to rely on me, or another professional or a structured diet to tell you how much and when to eat.

And when you inevitably fail to follow the structured rules, you stay stuck in the cycle

These types of rules are often the triggers for people spiraling.

Let’s say its 3 PM and you’re hungry. You already had an apple with your breakfast but you have a cup of berries in the fridge. You think about eating them but you remember… “1 fruit per day” so instead of saying “you know what, I’m hungry and having a cup of berries is a great choice”, you say “ugh, I’ve already had my fruit and now I’m hungry, might as well sabotage the rest of the day and just eat everything in the kitchen and then I’ll start over tomorrow.”

As you can see from this example, it would make a lot more sense just to have a serving of fruit as a mindful snack but due to structured rules, this person felt like they failed and as such, wound up going a lot further off the rails than if they would’ve just had that additional serving of fruit (which would’ve been completely appropriate anyway!)

This is why I’m so passionate about my role as a Registered Dietitian to empower people to make choices that align with your personal health goals and preferences and that means not giving you arbitrary rules. Instead, I prefer to translate the knowledge I have about nutrition to you so you can start to feel like you’re in the driver’s seat when it comes to what you eat!