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Kiwifruit vs. Lemon — Health Impact and Nutrition Comparison

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Article author photo Elen Khachatrian by Elen Khachatrian | Last updated on April 30, 2023
Medically reviewed by Arpi Gasparyan Article author photo Arpi Gasparyan
Kiwifruit
vs
Lemon

Summary

Kiwifruits contain eight times more Vitamin E and two times more copper than bananas. Vitamin C, Vitamin A, magnesium, and potassium levels are also higher in kiwifruit.

On the other hand, lemons contain fewer sugars, fewer fats, and fewer calories than kiwifruits.

Introduction

Kiwifruits and lemons are prevalent fruits and are used worldwide. We will discuss their similarities, differences, and how they stack up against each other in nutrition.

Externally, they are very different. Kiwis have furry brownish-green skin and are 5–8 centimeters in length. Lemons are yellow and oval, usually 7 -12 cm in length. The flavor of lemon is aromatic of rose, lavender, and pine with a slight note of herbaceous. Kiwis are tart, sweet, and complex in flavor.

Varieties

Lemons belong to the Citrus genus. They originated in South Asia, but now lemons are a popular citrus fruit used worldwide. The most popular types of lemons are Lisbon lemons and Eureka lemons. Kiwifruit or Chinese gooseberry belongs to the genus Actinidia. Kiwis are the first known plants exported from New Zealand, but they originated in Asia. The most common variety is the Hayward, grown almost exclusively in California.

Uses

Kiwifruit can be eaten raw or used in juices, garnish, smoothies, cakes, salads, etc. Some people prefer to eat kiwifruit with skin. In China, kiwifruit has been used as a medicine for women to recover after childbirth. Lemon can also be eaten raw or made marmalade, lemon liqueur, cocktails, garnish, and flavor for different dishes. Lemon leaves are also used in culinary to make tea and for preparing meats and seafood.

Nutrition

Both kiwis and lemons have rich nutrition content. You can find the nutrition infographics at the bottom of this page.

Micronutrients

Kiwifruit is richer in protein, carbs, fiber, and fructose. On the other hand, lemon contains fewer sugars. Both fruits contain no cholesterol.

Vitamins

Kiwifruit is relatively high in vitamins. It contains eight times more Vitamin E, two times more Vitamins B3, and Vitamin A than lemon. Vitamin C, Vitamin B2, Vitamin K, and folate levels are also higher in kiwifruit. Lemon, on the other hand, has more Vitamin B1 and Vitamin B6 than kiwifruit. The amount of Vitamin B5 is equal in these fruits. Both fruits lack Vitamin D and Vitamin B12.

Vitamin Comparison

Vitamin comparison score is based on the number of vitamins by which one or the other food is richer. The "coverage" charts below show how much of the daily needs can be covered by 300 grams of the food.
:
3
Lemon
Contains more Vitamin A +295.5%
Contains more Vitamin E +873.3%
Contains more Vitamin C +74.9%
Contains more Vitamin B2 +25%
Contains more Vitamin B3 +241%
Contains more Folate +127.3%
Contains more Vitamin K +∞%
Contains more Vitamin B1 +48.1%
Contains more Vitamin B6 +27%
Equal in Vitamin B5 - 0.19
Vitamin A Vitamin E Vitamin D Vitamin C Vitamin B1 Vitamin B2 Vitamin B3 Vitamin B5 Vitamin B6 Folate Vitamin B12 Vitamin K 6% 30% 0% 309% 7% 6% 7% 11% 15% 19% 0% 101%
Vitamin A Vitamin E Vitamin D Vitamin C Vitamin B1 Vitamin B2 Vitamin B3 Vitamin B5 Vitamin B6 Folate Vitamin B12 Vitamin K 2% 3% 0% 177% 10% 5% 2% 12% 19% 9% 0% 0%
Contains more Vitamin A +295.5%
Contains more Vitamin E +873.3%
Contains more Vitamin C +74.9%
Contains more Vitamin B2 +25%
Contains more Vitamin B3 +241%
Contains more Folate +127.3%
Contains more Vitamin K +∞%
Contains more Vitamin B1 +48.1%
Contains more Vitamin B6 +27%
Equal in Vitamin B5 - 0.19

Minerals

In comparison, the mineral content of kiwifruit is richer than that of lemon. Kiwifruit has more copper, potassium, magnesium, calcium, zinc, and phosphorus. The level of iron is high in lemon. Also, it has less sodium than kiwifruit.

Mineral Comparison

Mineral comparison score is based on the number of minerals by which one or the other food is richer. The "coverage" charts below show how much of the daily needs can be covered by 300 grams of the food.
Contains more Calcium +30.8%
Contains more Magnesium +112.5%
Contains more Phosphorus +112.5%
Contains more Potassium +126.1%
Contains more Zinc +133.3%
Contains more Copper +251.4%
Contains more Manganese +226.7%
Contains more Iron +93.5%
Contains less Sodium -33.3%
Contains more Selenium +100%
Calcium Iron Magnesium Phosphorus Potassium Sodium Zinc Copper Manganese Selenium 11% 12% 13% 15% 28% 1% 4% 44% 13% 2%
Calcium Iron Magnesium Phosphorus Potassium Sodium Zinc Copper Manganese Selenium 8% 23% 6% 7% 13% 1% 2% 13% 4% 3%
Contains more Calcium +30.8%
Contains more Magnesium +112.5%
Contains more Phosphorus +112.5%
Contains more Potassium +126.1%
Contains more Zinc +133.3%
Contains more Copper +251.4%
Contains more Manganese +226.7%
Contains more Iron +93.5%
Contains less Sodium -33.3%
Contains more Selenium +100%

Glycemic Index

The glycemic index of lemon has not yet been measured. Kiwi has a glycemic index equal to 58 [1].

Acidity

The acidity of fruits may change depending on growing conditions. However, most studies show lemons to be more acidic than kiwifruits. The pH of lemons equals 3.1, whereas kiwifruits have a pH of 5.6 [2] [3].

Calories

Overall, kiwifruits have two times more calories than lemons. Kiwifruits contain 61 calories in every 100g serving, while lemons contain only 29 calories in every 100g serving.

Health Impact

Weight Loss

Both kiwifruit and lemon are used in different diets due to their low-calorie content. The lemon detox diet lasts 5 to 10 days, during which people consume only lemon-based mixtures with no solid foods. According to the study, organic maple and palm syrups with lemon juice reduce body fat and insulin resistance [4].

Kiwis are over 90% water, also contain a good amount of fiber and Vitamin C - all additional weight loss benefits.

Cardiovascular Health

Lemons are rich in flavonoids, Vitamin C, and fiber, correlated with reduced cardiovascular diseases.

According to the study eating 24 grams of citrus fiber daily for a month reduced total blood cholesterol levels [5] [6].

Based on the study, the bioactive substances in kiwis a day can lower blood pressure. In the long term, kiwis may also help lower the risk for conditions caused by high blood pressure, like strokes or heart attacks [7].

Diabetes

According to research, lemon juice can slow down the digestion of carbohydrates to sugar.

The results show that adding a drink to diabetics' meals can help level off the spikes in blood sugar. This effect is associated with the acidity of lemon juice slowing down starch digestion.

Kiwifruit contains an enzyme called inositol, which helps control the blood sugar level [8] [9].

Cancer

Researchers suggest that several compounds in lemons, such as limonene or naringenin, have anticancer effects. Moreover, lemon contains antioxidants such as Vitamin C that can fight against free radicals in the human body and lower cancer risk.

On the other hand, kiwifruit contains a good amount of Vitamin C. The flesh of kiwi contains soluble fiber that may promote the growth of good bacteria and reduce colon cancer [10] [11].

Immune System

A lot of studies have shown vitamin C has beneficial effects on typical cold recovery. Moreover, not having enough vitamin C can hurt your immune system, especially if you're elderly. In this case, both lemons and kiwis are good sources of Vitamin C, containing enough Vitamin A and minerals to boost your immune system. Also, Vitamin C can help boost immunity in those undergoing extreme physical activity [12].

Digestive Health

Section reviewed by gastroenterologist Arpi Gasparyan Article author photo Arpi Gasparyan

Kiwis are high in dietary fiber. Dietary fiber may act as a bulking agent, improve regularity and decrease intestinal transit time, thus alleviating constipation symptoms [13].

The dietary fiber in kiwis and lemons may also beneficially affect various gastrointestinal diseases [14].

Kidney Stones

Lemon juice is an excellent source of citric acid, which may help to prevent kidney stones by increasing urine volume and urine pH. As a result, it helps to lower the risk for kidney stone formation. Based on the study, 125 ml of lemon juice per day provides enough citric acid to help prevent stone formation, even in those who have already had them [15].

Side Effects

Lemon and kiwifruit have rich nutrition content. However, here are some reasons why you may need to avoid eating these fruits.

Allergy

People who have a citrus allergy may have an allergy to raw lemons. Symptoms usually include intense tingling and itching of the lips, tongue, and throat. People can have an allergy to kiwifruits if they are allergic to latex. When it happens, the symptoms may include itching in the lips, mouth, or throat [16] [17].

Heartburn

Section reviewed by gastroenterologist Arpi Gasparyan Article author photo Arpi Gasparyan

Due to their acidic nature, lemons can cause heartburn and aggravation of gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) symptoms, which may happen when raw lemons are consumed on an empty stomach. Lemon water effects on GERD symptoms largely depend on the consumer. Some people may feel relief from heartburn, while others may experience it [18] [19].

Article author photo Elen Khachatrian
Education: Nutrition & Microbiology at YSU
Last updated: April 30, 2023
Medically reviewed by Arpi Gasparyan

Infographic

Kiwifruit vs Lemon infographic
Infographic link

Macronutrient Comparison

Macronutrient breakdown side-by-side comparison
Contains more Fats +73.3%
Contains more Carbs +57.3%
Contains more Other +103.3%
Equal in Protein - 1.1
Equal in Water - 88.98
15% 83%
Protein: 1.14 g
Fats: 0.52 g
Carbs: 14.66 g
Water: 83.07 g
Other: 0.61 g
9% 89%
Protein: 1.1 g
Fats: 0.3 g
Carbs: 9.32 g
Water: 88.98 g
Other: 0.3 g
Contains more Fats +73.3%
Contains more Carbs +57.3%
Contains more Other +103.3%
Equal in Protein - 1.1
Equal in Water - 88.98

Fat Type Comparison

Fat type breakdown side-by-side comparison
Contains less Saturated Fat -25.6%
Contains more Monounsaturated Fat +327.3%
Contains more Polyunsaturated fat +222.5%
8% 13% 79%
Saturated Fat: 0.029 g
Monounsaturated Fat: 0.047 g
Polyunsaturated fat: 0.287 g
28% 8% 64%
Saturated Fat: 0.039 g
Monounsaturated Fat: 0.011 g
Polyunsaturated fat: 0.089 g
Contains less Saturated Fat -25.6%
Contains more Monounsaturated Fat +327.3%
Contains more Polyunsaturated fat +222.5%

Comparison summary table

Pay attention to the rightmost column. It displays the amounts side by side, giving a clearer understanding of the difference.
Kiwifruit Lemon
Lower in Sugar ok
Lower in Sodium ok
Lower in Saturated Fat ok
Lower in Glycemic Index ok
Rich in minerals ok
Rich in vitamins ok
Lower in Cholesterol Equal
Lower in price Equal

All nutrients comparison - raw data values

Nutrient Kiwifruit Lemon Opinion
Net carbs 11.66g 6.52g Kiwifruit
Protein 1.14g 1.1g Kiwifruit
Fats 0.52g 0.3g Kiwifruit
Carbs 14.66g 9.32g Kiwifruit
Calories 61kcal 29kcal Kiwifruit
Fructose 4.35g Kiwifruit
Sugar 8.99g 2.5g Lemon
Fiber 3g 2.8g Kiwifruit
Calcium 34mg 26mg Kiwifruit
Iron 0.31mg 0.6mg Lemon
Magnesium 17mg 8mg Kiwifruit
Phosphorus 34mg 16mg Kiwifruit
Potassium 312mg 138mg Kiwifruit
Sodium 3mg 2mg Lemon
Zinc 0.14mg 0.06mg Kiwifruit
Copper 0.13mg 0.037mg Kiwifruit
Manganese 0.098mg 0.03mg Kiwifruit
Selenium 0.2µg 0.4µg Lemon
Vitamin A 87IU 22IU Kiwifruit
Vitamin A RAE 4µg 1µg Kiwifruit
Vitamin E 1.46mg 0.15mg Kiwifruit
Vitamin C 92.7mg 53mg Kiwifruit
Vitamin B1 0.027mg 0.04mg Lemon
Vitamin B2 0.025mg 0.02mg Kiwifruit
Vitamin B3 0.341mg 0.1mg Kiwifruit
Vitamin B5 0.183mg 0.19mg Lemon
Vitamin B6 0.063mg 0.08mg Lemon
Folate 25µg 11µg Kiwifruit
Vitamin K 40.3µg 0µg Kiwifruit
Tryptophan 0.015mg Kiwifruit
Threonine 0.047mg Kiwifruit
Isoleucine 0.051mg Kiwifruit
Leucine 0.066mg Kiwifruit
Lysine 0.061mg Kiwifruit
Methionine 0.024mg Kiwifruit
Phenylalanine 0.044mg Kiwifruit
Valine 0.057mg Kiwifruit
Histidine 0.027mg Kiwifruit
Saturated Fat 0.029g 0.039g Kiwifruit
Monounsaturated Fat 0.047g 0.011g Kiwifruit
Polyunsaturated fat 0.287g 0.089g Kiwifruit

Which food is preferable for your diet?

ok
ok
is better in case of low diet
Kiwifruit Lemon
Low Fats diet ok
Low Carbs diet ok
Low Calories diet ok
Low Glycemic Index diet ok

People also compare

Vitamins & Minerals Daily Need Coverage Score

The summary scores indicate the extent to which this food can fulfill your daily vitamin and mineral requirements if you consume 3 servings, consisting of 100 grams of each (an approximation of 3 serving sizes).
Vitamins Daily Need Coverage Score
42%
Kiwifruit
20%
Lemon
Minerals Daily Need Coverage Score
14%
Kiwifruit
8%
Lemon

Comparison summary

Which food is lower in Sugar?
Lemon
Lemon is lower in Sugar (difference - 6.49g)
Which food contains less Sodium?
Lemon
Lemon contains less Sodium (difference - 1mg)
Which food is lower in Saturated Fat?
Kiwifruit
Kiwifruit is lower in Saturated Fat (difference - 0.01g)
Which food is lower in glycemic index?
Kiwifruit
Kiwifruit is lower in glycemic index (difference - 58)
Which food is richer in minerals?
Kiwifruit
Kiwifruit is relatively richer in minerals
Which food is richer in vitamins?
Kiwifruit
Kiwifruit is relatively richer in vitamins
Which food contains less Cholesterol?
?
The foods are relatively equal in Cholesterol (0 mg)
Which food is cheaper?
?
The foods are relatively equal in price ($0.5)

References

All the values for which the sources are not specified explicitly are taken from FDA’s Food Central. The exact link to the food presented on this page can be found below.

  1. Kiwifruit - https://fdc.nal.usda.gov/fdc-app.html#/food-details/168153/nutrients
  2. Lemon - https://fdc.nal.usda.gov/fdc-app.html#/food-details/167746/nutrients

All the Daily Values are presented for males aged 31-50, for 2000-calorie diets.

Data provided by FoodStruct.com should be considered and used as information only. Please consult your physician before beginning any diet.