You might not realize it but December is national pear month.

The fruit, much more common in summer months, has been receiving quite a bit of attention lately after a new study called  ‘Fresh Pear Consumption is Associated with Better Nutrient Intake, Diet Quality, and Weight Parameters in Adults: National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey 2001-2010,’ was published in Nutrition and Food Science.”

The study illustrated how those who ate pears as a normal part of their diet were much more likely to carry less body fat than those who didn’t include pears in their diet.

One of the authors of the study, Dr. Carol O’Neil mentioned just how significant their findings were.

The association between pears and lower body weight is very exciting…We believe fiber intake may have driven the lower body weights that were seen in this study because there was no difference in energy intake or level of physical activity found between the fresh pear consumers and non-consumers.”

It’s well known people who eat more than the recommended amount of fiber have a lower BMI. Much of this is due to fiber’s affect on the appetite as well as its ability to provide a feeling of fullness and satiation.

Not only did they find pear eaters too be skinnier the researches also noticed they generally were just better, healthier eaters in general.

“Moreover, the consumption of one medium fresh pear per day had a positive effect on nutrient intake since consumers had higher usual intakes of dietary fiber, vitamin C, magnesium, copper, and potassium, and higher mean intakes of total sugars; consumers of fresh pears also had lower intakes of total, monounsaturated fatty acids, saturated fatty acids, and added sugars.”

While the study didn’t touch on this it is certainly worth a mention. When selecting pears for healthy eating always ensure they’re a bit firmer and less ripe.

The riper (and softer) a pear is the higher it is in natural sugar. And while the study definitely seemed to point to pears being a healthy choice all the way around, the less sugar in your body per food item the better for your health.

Also note the study was focused on fresh pears…not canned, candied, dehydrated, etc. as they are high in sugar and won’t help you lose weight.