Citrus Arugula Salad

Article written and reviewed by Cyrus Khambatta, PhD
Published July 10, 2023

The tartness of the grapefruit combined with the sweetness of the pineapple and orange makes a mouthwatering combination.

Indulge your taste buds with a refreshing burst of flavors in this delightful Citrus Arugula Salad. Packed with vibrant colors and zesty goodness, this recipe combines the peppery bite of baby arugula with the crispness of baby spinach. 

The juicy sweetness of pineapple chunks, along with the tangy allure of segmented oranges and grapefruits, adds a delightful tropical twist. Topped off with thinly sliced onions and drizzled with a zingy Lemon Flaxseed Dressing, this salad is a tantalizing treat for your senses. 

Get ready to savor the harmonious blend of textures and tastes, while reaping the health benefits of this nourishing plant-based creation. Optional lemon zest garnish adds an extra touch of citrusy zest. Prepare to embark on a culinary adventure that will leave you craving more!

itamins and minerals that can contribute to overall health. Oranges are particularly known for their high vitamin C content, which supports immune function and acts as an antioxidant in the body. A medium-sized orange provides approximately 70-80% of the recommended daily intake of vitamin C.

In addition to vitamin C, oranges contain several other important nutrients. They are a good source of dietary fiber, which aids in digestion and can help regulate blood glucose levels. Oranges also contain folate (vitamin B9), potassium, thiamine (vitamin B1), and calcium, among other nutrients.

When it comes to diabetes, oranges can be a beneficial addition to the diet. While they do contain natural sugars, the fiber content in oranges helps slow down the absorption of glucose into the bloodstream, which can help prevent rapid spikes in blood glucose levels. This gradual release of glucose into the bloodstream is beneficial for individuals with diabetes, as it promotes better blood glucose control.

The glycemic index (GI) of oranges is relatively low to moderate, usually ranging from 40 to 50. The glycemic index is a scale that ranks carbohydrate-containing foods based on how they affect blood glucose levels. Foods with a lower GI are believed to have a lesser impact on blood glucose levels. However, it's important to note that the GI of a food can be influenced by factors such as ripeness and preparation.

The glycemic load (GL) takes into account both the quantity of carbohydrates in a food and its GI, providing a more accurate measure of its effect on blood glucose. Oranges have a low glycemic load, which means they have a minimal impact on blood glucose levels when consumed in appropriate portions.

In summary, oranges offer a range of essential vitamins and minerals, including vitamin C, fiber, and potassium. They can be a beneficial fruit choice for individuals with diabetes due to their moderate glycemic index, high fiber content, and low glycemic load.

Revitalize Your Health: Embrace the Diabetes-Friendly Goodness of Grapefruit

Grapefruit is not only a tangy and refreshing fruit but also a nutritional powerhouse. It is packed with essential vitamins and minerals that contribute to a healthy diet. Grapefruit is particularly known for being an excellent source of vitamin C, providing a significant portion of the recommended daily intake in just one serving.

In addition to vitamin C, grapefruit contains other important nutrients. It is a good source of dietary fiber, which aids in digestion and helps maintain healthy cholesterol levels. Grapefruit also contains vitamins A, B5, and B9 (folate), as well as potassium and copper.

For individuals with diabetes, grapefruit can be a beneficial addition to their meal plan. While grapefruit does contain natural sugars, its high fiber content helps slow down the absorption of glucose into the bloodstream. This can contribute to better blood glucose control and prevent rapid spikes in blood glucose levels.

The glycemic index (GI) of grapefruit varies depending on the variety and ripeness. On average, grapefruit has a moderate GI, ranging from 25 to 45. This moderate GI indicates that grapefruit has a moderate impact on blood glucose levels.

When considering the glycemic load (GL), which takes into account both the quantity of carbohydrates in a food and its GI, grapefruit has a low glycemic load. This means that consuming grapefruit in appropriate portions has a minimal effect on blood glucose levels.

In summary, grapefruit is a nutrient-dense fruit, rich in vitamin C, fiber, and other essential vitamins and minerals. It can be a beneficial fruit choice for individuals with diabetes due to its moderate GI and low glycemic load.

Peppery Powerhouse: Discover the Diabetes-Friendly Delights of Arugula

Arugula, also known as rocket or roquette, is a leafy green vegetable that offers a range of nutritional benefits. Despite its small size, arugula is packed with vitamins and minerals that contribute to a well-rounded diet. It is particularly known for its strong, peppery flavor, which adds a delightful kick to salads and other dishes.

Arugula is an excellent source of vitamins A, K, and C. Vitamin A promotes healthy vision and immune function, while vitamin K is essential for proper blood clotting and bone health. Vitamin C acts as an antioxidant, supporting the immune system and aiding in collagen production.

In addition to vitamins, arugula contains important minerals such as calcium, potassium, and folate (vitamin B9). Calcium is essential for maintaining strong bones and teeth, while potassium helps regulate blood pressure and supports heart health. Folate is crucial for proper cell division and DNA synthesis.

For individuals living with diabetes, arugula can be a beneficial addition to their diet. It is low in carbohydrates and calories while providing essential nutrients. The low carbohydrate content helps manage blood glucose levels, making arugula a diabetes-friendly choice.

Arugula has a low glycemic index (GI), typically ranging from 20 to 30. This means that it has a minimal impact on blood glucose levels, making it suitable for individuals with diabetes. Additionally, arugula has a low glycemic load, further supporting its positive effect on blood glucose control.

In summary, arugula is a nutrient-dense leafy green, rich in vitamins A, K, and C, as well as minerals like calcium, potassium, and folate. It is low in carbohydrates, making it suitable for individuals with diabetes. Its low glycemic index and glycemic load contribute to better blood glucose control. Incorporating arugula into your meals can not only enhance the flavor but also boost your overall nutritional intake.

Citrus Arugula Salad

Beverly Verwey
Servings 1 person
Calories 441 kcal


  • 2 cups baby arugula
  • 1 cup baby spinach chopped
  • 1 cup pineapple chunks
  • 1 orange segments separated and segment walls removed
  • 1 grapefruit segments separated and segment walls removed
  • 1/2 onion thinly sliced
  • 1/2 Lemon Flaxseed Dressing see recipe in "Notes"
  • 1 tsp lemon zest optional, for garnish


  • Make the dressing (see notes below) and set aside.
  • Prepare the grapefruit and orange.
  • Put the arugula and spinach on a plate or bowl.
  • Top with orange segments, grapefruit segments, pineapple chunks, onion and the Lemon Flaxseed Dressing.
  • Garnish with the lemon zest.


Lemon Flaxseed Dressing (makes 2 servings):
In a jar add the following:
  • 2 tbsp ground flaxseed
  • ¼ cup lemon juice
Let this sit for 5 minutes
Add the following:
  • 1 tsp Dijon mustard
  • 1 tsp honey
  • ¼ tsp ground black pepper
  • 1 tbsp fresh basil, chopped
With the jar lid on, shake and pour ½ of dressing on salad.
Save the remaining dressing in the fridge for another salad.


Calories: 441kcalCarbohydrates: 80.6gProtein: 9.8gFat: 6.3gSodium: 135.3mg
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

About the author 

Cyrus Khambatta, PhD

Cyrus Khambatta, PhD is a New York Times bestselling co-author of Mastering Diabetes: The Revolutionary Method to Reverse Insulin Resistance Permanently in Type 1, Type 1.5, Type 2, Prediabetes, and Gestational Diabetes.

He is the co-founder of Mastering Diabetes and Amla Green, and is an internationally recognized nutrition and fitness coach who has been living with type 1 diabetes since 2002. He co-created the Mastering Diabetes Method to reverse insulin resistance in all forms of diabetes, and has helped more than 10,000 people improve their metabolic health using low-fat, plant-based, whole-food nutrition, intermittent fasting, and exercise.

Cyrus earned a Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering from Stanford University in 2003, then earned a PhD in Nutritional Biochemistry from the University of California at Berkeley in 2012. He is the co-author of many peer-reviewed scientific publications.

He is the co-host of the annual Mastering Diabetes Online Summit, a featured speaker at the Plant-Based Nutrition and Healthcare Conference (PBNHC), the American College of Lifestyle Medicine Conference (ACLM), Plant Stock, the Torrance Memorial Medical Center, and has been featured on The Doctors, NPR, KQED, Forks Over Knives, Healthline, Fast Company, Diet Fiction, and the wildly popular podcasts the Rich Roll Podcast, Plant Proof, MindBodyGreen, and Nutrition Rounds.

Scientific Publications:

Sarver, Jordan, Cyrus Khambatta, Robby Barbaro, Bhakti Chavan, and David Drozek. “Retrospective Evaluation of an Online Diabetes Health Coaching Program: A Pilot Study.” American Journal of Lifestyle Medicine, October 15, 2019, 1559827619879106. https://doi.org/10.1177/1559827619879106

Shrivastav, Maneesh, William Gibson, Rajendra Shrivastav, Katie Elzea, Cyrus Khambatta, Rohan Sonawane, Joseph A. Sierra, and Robert Vigersky. “Type 2 Diabetes Management in Primary Care: The Role of Retrospective, Professional Continuous Glucose Monitoring.” Diabetes Spectrum: A Publication of the American Diabetes Association 31, no. 3 (August 2018): 279–87. https://doi.org/10.2337/ds17-0024

Thompson, Airlia C. S., Matthew D. Bruss, John C. Price, Cyrus F. Khambatta, William E. Holmes, Marc Colangelo, Marcy Dalidd, et al. “Reduced in Vivo Hepatic Proteome Replacement Rates but Not Cell Proliferation Rates Predict Maximum Lifespan Extension in Mice.” Aging Cell 15, no. 1 (February 2016): 118–27. https://doi.org/10.1111/acel.12414

Roohk, Donald J., Smita Mascharak, Cyrus Khambatta, Ho Leung, Marc Hellerstein, and Charles Harris. “Dexamethasone-Mediated Changes in Adipose Triacylglycerol Metabolism Are Exaggerated, Not Diminished, in the Absence of a Functional GR Dimerization Domain.” Endocrinology 154, no. 4 (April 2013): 1528–39. https://doi.org/10.1210/en.2011-1047

Price, John C., Cyrus F. Khambatta, Kelvin W. Li, Matthew D. Bruss, Mahalakshmi Shankaran, Marcy Dalidd, Nicholas A. Floreani, et al. “The Effect of Long Term Calorie Restriction on in Vivo Hepatic Proteostatis: A Novel Combination of Dynamic and Quantitative Proteomics.” Molecular & Cellular Proteomics: MCP 11, no. 12 (December 2012): 1801–14.

Bruss, Matthew D., Airlia C. S. Thompson, Ishita Aggarwal, Cyrus F. Khambatta, and Marc K. Hellerstein. “The Effects of Physiological Adaptations to Calorie Restriction on Global Cell Proliferation Rates.” American Journal of Physiology. Endocrinology and Metabolism 300, no. 4 (April 2011): E735-745. https://doi.org/10.1152/ajpendo.00661.2010

Bruss, Matthew D., Cyrus F. Khambatta, Maxwell A. Ruby, Ishita Aggarwal, and Marc K. Hellerstein. “Calorie Restriction Increases Fatty Acid Synthesis and Whole Body Fat Oxidation Rates.” American Journal of Physiology. Endocrinology and Metabolism 298, no. 1 (January 2010): E108-116.