Dragon Fruit (Pitaya Fruit) is a Naturally Nutritious Fruit
Aside from the health benefits towards diabetes pitaya fruit is also a great fruit in terms of other nutrients pitaya carries. As with all dried fruits, you'll find a lot more nutrients in pitaya as the dried pitaya fruit than the fresh pitaya fruit. I always buy pitaya fruit dried for ease of storage and to get both more pitaya nutrients per weight unit, and to slow digestion of the fruit. If you buy dried dragon fruit (dried pitaya fruit, dried pitahaya fruit), you will find the dried fruit usually has about 10x the punch of the fresh fruit in vitamins like vitamin C, fiber and micro nutrients. If you eat 1.5 oz of the dried pitaya fruit, you'll be eating almost a full pound of the fresh fruit! All the beneficial dietary fiber, vitamin C and micro nutrients are still there in the dried pitahaya fruit. The fresh pitahaya fruit has lots of water, which gives it the soft creamy texture when eaten fresh. The dried dragon fruit will be chewy and much darker in color than the fresh fruit. The phrase 'color your diet' applies here for this fruit which is fiber, vitamin rich, easy and quick to eat.
Fiber: Like many healthy, nutrient rich fruits, dragon fruit has lots of dietary fiber with almost 1g of fiber per 100g of the fresh fruit. Depending upon the degree of moisture retention in the dried pitahaya fruit, you can expect to see 10g or more grams of dietary fiber per 100g of the dried pitahaya fruit.
Cholesterol: Keeping a heart healthy low cholesterol diet is an important part of type 2 diabetes diet management for long term health benefit. You do not need to worry about your cholesterol level as dragon fruit is both low in cholesterol and has little to no unhealthy cholesterol producing fats (certain fats which are metabolized to cholesterol contribute to increased cholesterol levels more than even cholesterol itself in food sources of cholesterol). You might wonder why even mention dragon fruit cholesterol levels, but because of the number of seeds in the pitahaya fruit flesh, you do see some nutrients regularly seen in nuts and seeds as well as nutrients more typical of seedless edible fruits.
Vitamin C: Along with large amounts of beneficial dietary fiber, pitahaya fruit is also a great source of Vitamin C giving you almost 50% of your recommended daily Vitamin C intake requirements in 100g of the dried pitahaya fruit.
Antioxidants: Eat dragon fruit as an excellent natural source of anti-oxidants which help to prevent the dangers of free radicals which can cause cancer and other undesirable health detriments.
Fats: Interestingly, pitahaya fruit does have a small amount of fats because there are so many seeds in the edible part of the pitahaya fruit. There can be literally thousands of the small black seeds in any given dragon fruit, and like most seeds and nuts they have both fats and protein in them even though the flesh of the fruit itself has virtually none. Many fruits we eat have the seeds removed. We may not even think of them as seeds for fruits like apricots, peaches, apples and the like, so we tend to think of fruits as being completely fat and protein free. You would never eat an avocado seed, but you do eat pitaya fruit seeds. It would be literally impossible to remove the seeds from dragon fruit unless you pressed it through a strainer, as the seeds are very small and mixed evenly in the flesh. Fortunately these are mostly the healthy mono-unsaturated fats as, of course, they are not processed in any way and therefore are none of the dangerously unhealthy trans-fats seen in most junk food and processed foods.
Type 1 Diabetes Dragon Fruit Diet - reduced insulin usage may be possible
I have read of dragon fruit diabetes control also helping with reducing the amount of insulin required to manage type 1 diabetes. If you are a type 1 diabetes sufferer using insulin, try incorporating dragon fruit with some of your meals and see what it does for you as an addition to your diabetic diet. Remember the dried pitaya fruit is about 10x a dense as the fresh pitaya fruit, so your 1.5 oz nibble of the dried pitaya fruit is almost equivalent to a full 1 lb of the fresh pitahaya fruit.