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Thursday, December 25, 2014

Health Benefits of Apples

Apples are extremely rich in important antioxidants, flavanoids, and dietary fiber.



The phytonutrients and antioxidants in apples may help reduce the risk of developing cancer, hypertension, diabetes, and heart disease.


Nutritional information for apples


Apples deserve to be called "nutritional powerhouses". They contain the following important nutrients:

·       Vitamin C - a powerful natural antioxidant capable of blocking some of the damage caused by free radicals, as well as boosting the body's resistance against infectious agents, according to the University of Maryland Medical Center.1
·       B-complex vitamins (riboflavin, thiamin, and vitamin B-6) - these vitamins are key in maintaining red blood cells and the nervous system in good health.
·       Dietary fiber - the British National Health Service2 says that a diet high in fiber can help prevent the development of certain diseases and may help prevent the amount of bad cholesterol in your blood from rising.
·       Phytonutrients - apples are rich in polyphenolic compounds". These phytonutrients help protect the body from the detrimental effects of free radicals.3
·       Minerals such as calcium, potassium, and phosphorus.

Health Benefits of Apples


Benefit: Nutrition, straight up

Packing in quite a bit of soluble fiber (4 grams per medium apple) for a modest amount of calories (95) makes apples a filling, sweet snack. Plus, a medium apple counts as 1 cup of fruit, so after eating one you’re well on your way to meeting your daily fruit quota. They also are a good source of immune-boosting vitamin C (providing 14% of the Daily Value).


Weight Loss

Apples satisfy hunger for few calories so it’s not surprising that they can be part of a healthy diet that promotes weight loss. And in a recent study, dried apples also helped participants lose some weight. Women who ate a cup of dried apples daily for a year lost some weight and lowered their cholesterol and heart disease markers. Florida State University researchers think apples’ antioxidants and pectin (a type of fiber) are responsible for the benefits—and think that fresh apples would be even more effective.


Heart Health

The Florida State study is not the only one to link apple consumption to heart health. Last year, the Iowa Women’s Health Study reported that, among the 34,000-plus women it’s been tracking for nearly 20 years, apples were associated with a lower risk of death from both coronary heart disease and cardiovascular disease. Some years earlier, Finnish researchers studying dietary data collected over 28 years from 9,208 men and women found that frequent apple eaters had the lowest risk of suffering strokes compared with no apple eaters. Experts attribute the heart-healthy benefits to antioxidant compounds found in apples, which help prevent LDL cholesterol from oxidizing and inhibit inflammation. Plus, the soluble fiber in apples has also been shown to lower cholesterol levels.


Protect Against Metabolic Syndrome

People who eat apples may be less likely to suffer from metabolic syndrome, a cluster of symptoms linked to an increased risk of heart disease and diabetes. Joyce Hendley reported in Eating Well Magazine that researchers who analyzed National Health and Nutrition Examination Study (NHANES) data, a survey of eating and health habits, found that people who had eaten apples in any form over the past day were 27 percent less likely to have symptoms of metabolic syndrome than those who didn’t. The apple eaters also had lower levels of C-reactive protein, a marker of inflammation whose presence in the blood suggests an increased risk for heart disease and diabetes.



Exercise Extender

Eating an apple before you work out may boost your exercise endurance. Apples deliver an antioxidant called quercetin, which aids endurance by making oxygen more available to the lungs. One study showed that quercetin—when taken in supplement form—helped people bike longer.


Get whiter, healthier teeth

An apple won’t replace your toothbrush, but biting and chewing an apple stimulates the production of saliva in your mouth, reducing tooth decay by lowering the levels of bacteria.


Curb all sorts of cancers

Scientists from the American Association for Cancer Research, among others, agree that the consumption of flavonol-rich apples could help reduce your risk of developing pancreatic cancer by up to 23 per cent. Researchers at Cornell University have identified several compounds—triterpenoids—in apple peel that have potent anti-growth activities against cancer cells in the liver, colon and breast. Their earlier research found that extracts from whole apples can reduce the number and size of mammary tumours in rats. Meanwhile, the National Cancer Institute in the U.S. has recommended a high fibre intake to reduce the risk of colorectal cancer.


Reduce cholesterol

The soluble fiber found in apples binds with fats in the intestine, which translates into lower cholesterol levels and a healthier you.


Prevent gallstones

Gallstones form when there’s too much cholesterol in your bile for it to remain as a liquid, so it solidifies. They are particularly prevalent in the obese. To prevent gallstones, doctors recommend a diet high in fiber to help you control your weight and cholesterol levels.


Beat diarrhea and constipation

Whether you can’t go to the bathroom or you just can’t stop, fiber found in apples can help. Fiber can either pull water out of your colon to keep things moving along when you’re backed up, or absorb excess water from your stool to slow your bowels down.


Avert hemorrhoids

Hemorrhoids are a swollen vein in the anal canal and while not life threatening, these veins can be very painful. They are caused by too much pressure in the pelvic and rectal areas. Part and parcel with controlling constipation, fiber can prevent you from straining too much when going to the bathroom and thereby help alleviate hemorrhoids.


Detoxify your liver


We’re constantly consuming toxins, whether it is from drinks or food, and your liver is responsible for clearing these toxins out of your body. Many doctors are skeptical of fad detox diets, saying they have the potential to do more harm than good. Luckily, one of the best—and easiest—things you can eat to help detoxify your liver is fruits—like apples.

3 comments:

  1. Really nice write up. I am beginning to fall in love with this fruit

    ReplyDelete
  2. Please I really like your blog template. Can you help me get it

    ReplyDelete