Health benefits of Apple
Apple is one of the most delicious fruits which is why it is loved by most people around the world and as well have Health Benefits of Apple. Apples grow on an apple tree which has the scientific name Malus pumila commonly called as Malus Domestica. It is a deciduous tree falling in the rose family. Today, apples are grown all over the world and it is the most popularly grown species in the genus Malus. The origin of Apples goes back to Central Asia where Malus sieversii is found which is its wild ancestor. Apples are believed to be brought in to North America by the Europeans. Apple is one fruit which has its significance in various religions and cultures around the world including the European, Christian, Norsk and Greek traditions. There are over 7500 cultivars of the apple in the world.
The best thing about apples is that there are many known ways to consume an apple. It can be eaten raw which is the most common way to eat it. Apart from that, it is used mostly in desserts including apple crumbs, apple pie or apple crisp. It can be eaten raw, dried or soaked in water and alcohol. Apples are also used to make applesauce, jams, brandy and toffees. Everyone must have heard the famous quote ”An apple a day keeps the doctor away“. The quote didn’t come to an origin for no reason at all. There are various reasons why Apples have been so popular throughout the centuries in different cultures around the world. It is not only tasty and juicy to eat but it also has numerous benefits for our health. The most common known benefits of eating an apple are as mentioned below.
- Apples are rich source of nutrients
According to various scientific backed researchers, a medium-sized apple is equivalent to 1.5 cups of fruit and for every 2000 calorie diet, 2 cups of fruit are recommended. A medium sized apple contains the following amount of nutrients necessary for the body. It contains around 95 calories and 25 grams of carbs. Similarly, a medium-sized apple contains 4 grams of fibre, 14% RDI of Vitamin C, 6% RDI of Potassium and 5% RDI of Vitamin K. It also contains other nutrients like Manganese, copper and vitamins A, E, B1, B2 and B6 which constitutes to be around 4% of RDI. There are other plant compounds which the nutrition labels may not mention like the polyphenols but they are also present in apples and they also have benefits to our health. Most people these days eat apples by peeling the skin but that is not the appropriate way to eat apples. The best way of eating apples is by eating with the outer skin. The outer skin of apples contains a lot of fibres and polyphenols which is good for our health.
- Apples may help in weight control
Apples can prove to be very helpful if you are having problems with overweight issues and you want to reduce your weight desperately. The main reason why apples can be effective in controlling and reducing weight is that it contains a lot of fibre and water which give a filling effect to the stomach. A research study showed that people who ate slices of apples before a meal felt much fuller than other people who didn’t eat apples. The same study also revealed that people who ate apples consumed 200 calories less than people who didn’t eat apples at all. Another study showed that 50 women who had weight issues ate apples or oat cookies regularly in their meal for 10 weeks. Both items were equal in calories and fibre content but at the end, the results showed that those women who ate apples lost their weight by almost one kg in average. They also consumed fewer calories on average. According to the researchers, apples are filling as they are less dense in energy but they have fibre and volume. They also have other natural compounds which help to lose weight. A study was conducted in mice and they were given ground apples and apple juice. The study revealed that they lost more weight and their LDL cholesterol levels and total cholesterol levels were lower than other mice.
- Apples keep your heart healthy
Apples are also known to have a relationship with the good health of the heart. The primary reason for that is the soluble fibre which is present in apples. The soluble fibre lowers the cholesterol levels in the blood and ultimately keeps the heart healthy. Similarly, the peel of the apples also has polyphenols which are rich in antioxidants necessary for the heart. There is a flavonoid named epicatechin which is believed to be crucial in reducing the blood pressure. There were scientific studies which showed that regular consumption of Flavanoids reduced the chances of strokes by 20%. Flavonoids also help to keep heart disease away by keeping the blood pressure down, decreasing levels of LDL oxidation and working as antioxidants. Other research also gave results according to which eating apples were compared to taking statins which is a drug taken to lower cholesterol levels. The estimates were made that regular consumption of apples was almost equally effective as consumption of Statins. This study was not a controlled type of trial so the findings can be taken as a solid evidence to support the health benefits of apple but much more studies are yet to be done to establish the fact. There were other researchers conducted to find out about the benefit of white-fleshed fruits like Apples and Pears. The results revealed that the risk of stroke decreased by almost 9% for every 25 grams of those fruits consumed.
- Apples are known to prevent diabetes
Many scientific studies and researchers have shown that regular consumption of apples decreases the chances of having Type 2 diabetes. A study was conducted according to which people who ate an apple daily had 28% fewer chances of having type 2 diabetes compared to people who didn’t eat apples at all. This study probably proves the statement ‘ An apple a day keeps the doctor away’. Eating a few apples a week also has an equally good effect on the overall health. There are substances called polyphenols in apples which helps the prevention of damage in beta cells located in the Pancreas. Beta cells are responsible for the production of insulin in the body and they are destroyed in people who have type 2 diabetes.
- Apple acts as a pre-biotic and they feed good gut bacteria
There is a substance known as Pectin in the apples which are a type of fibre and it acts as a prebiotic. Fiber is not absorbed the small intestine during the process of digestion but it goes to the colon. In the colon, it helps to promote the growth of a good type of bacteria. Other helpful types of compounds are made which circulate all around our body. Recent researches prove that this may primarily be the reason why apples are so effective against diseases like type 2 diabetes, obesity and heart problems.
- Apples may be helpful to prevent Cancer
Scientific studies have shown that there are lesser chances of diseases like Cancer if you eat apples regularly. They have observed a link between eating apples and fewer chances of Cancer. Test tube studies have revealed how apples contain substances with properties to fight off cancer. There was a lower rate of death occurring from Cancer if a person eats apples regularly. Apples have anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties which have a strong effect to prevent Cancer.
- Apples can help to fight Asthma
As it is already mentioned earlier that apples are rich in different types of antioxidants. So those antioxidants can save the lungs from oxidative damage. There was a big study conducted among 68,000 women. The study revealed that those women who ate apples regularly had a lower risk of asthma. Eating an apple every day lowered the chances of having Cancer by up to 10%. The outer peel of apples contains a substance called quercetin and it helps to keep the immune system regulated. It also helps to decrease the problem of inflammation. It can help with asthma and allergic reactions.
- Apples may keep the bones strong
Eating a lot of fruits are known to be associated with the good density of the bones. That means it is an indication of strong bones. The researchers believe that there are antioxidants and anti-inflammatory compounds present in the apple which help to increase bone density and strength. Some studies also show that apples can keep the bones healthy. A study was conducted in which some women ate apples and others ate peeled apples, applesauce or apple products while other women didn’t eat any apple products. The final results showed that the women who ate apples regularly lost less amount of calcium from their body compared to women who didn’t eat any type of apple products.
- Apples save against stomach injuries caused by NSAID
There are types of painkillers which are known as NSAID or nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs. They can cause harm to the lining of the stomach. A study was conducted among rats and it showed that extract of frozen dried apples was beneficial in saving the stomach cells from damage caused by NSAID. Similarly, there were other compounds called Chlorogenic acid and catechin which were known to be beneficial in protecting the stomach against injuries.
- The antioxidants help protect against age-related brain damage
It is evident that the brain doesn’t work in an old age in the same way it does in young age. The functioning power of brain decreases with age. Researchers have proven the benefits of the peel and flesh of apples but it has been found that the juice of apple is equally beneficial for keeping the brain healthy in old age. Studies were conducted on animals which showed how apple juice helped to reduce reactive oxygen species in tissues of the brain. It helped to reduce mental damage. Acetylcholine is a neurotransmitter which lessens with age but apple juice preserves the substance. When there is less level of Acetylcholine, then it is known to be associated with Alzheimer’s disease. Researchers have shown that eating a whole apple has much more benefits than eating in portions or sliced apple.