The aim of this review was to update current understanding of the potential association between fruit consumption and adiposity status in adult populations. Electronic databases were searched from January 1, 1997 to the search date of August 15, 2014, retrieving 4382 abstracts that were reviewed for eligibility: randomized controlled trial (RCT) or prospective cohort (PC), published in English, assessing the effect of whole fruit or fruit juice consumption on adiposity in healthy adult populations. Quality ratings for the 11 included RCTs were either positive (n = 2), neutral (n = 8), or negative (n = 1), while the six included PCs were either positive (n = 4) or neutral (n = 2). Consumption of whole fruit was found to contribute to a reduced risk for long-term weight gain in middle-aged adults. Experimental trials suggest this beneficial effect of whole fruit is mediated by a reduction in total energy intake. Fruit juice, however, had an opposing effect, promoting weight gain over the long term. This review reinforces national food-based dietary guidelines, encouraging the consumption of whole fruits and replacing fruit juices with plain water, as part of a broader set of dietary strategies to reduce total dietary energy intake in adult populations.
Keywords: Fruit; adiposity; adult; review; systematic.