“An apple a day keeps the doctor away.” How many times have you heard that little rhyme? I guess the cliché is so popular because it’s true. I could write a new blog post everyday with the health benefits of apples, but if I had to boil it down to the top ten headlines, it would look like this:
1. Apples protect against Alzheimer’s and Parkinsons
Two new studies from Cornell University found that apples protect against Alzheimer’s and Parkinsons. The study showed that the chemical quercetin, a flavanoid that has also been shoed to prevent the growth of prostate cancer cells, protected rat brain cells when approached with oxidative stress in laboratory tests.
2. Apples reduce your risk of asthma and improve your pulmonary health
A recent study in Australia found that apple and pear intake was associated with a decreased risk of asthma and decrease in bronchial hypersensitivity.
3. Smoke? Better eat your apples
In a case control study in Hawaii, it was found that there was a 40-50% decreased risk in lung cancer participants with the highest intake of apples, onions and white grapefruit. Check out An Apple a Day Keeps the Lung Cancer Away blog post for more info.
4. Decrease your heart attack risk by eating more apples
The Women’s Health Study found that women ingesting apples had a 13-22% decrease in cardiovascular disease risk.
5. Eat apples to reduce your risk of Type II diabetes
A Finnish study of 10,000 people found a reduced risk of Type II diabetes associated with apple consumption. This is attributed to the quercetin, which is a major component of apple peels.
6. Don’t peel that apple!
Apples, and especially apple peels, have been found to have potent antioxidant activity. In fact, apples have second highest level of antioxidant activity than any other fruit. These antioxidants can greatly inhibit the growth of livery cancer and colon cancer cells. Another study, at Cornell University showed that phytochemicals in the skin of an apple inhibited the reproduction of colon cancer cells by 43%!
7. Apples have the highest portion of free phenolics
What is free phenolic and why is this important? A phenolic is a huge class of biochemically active substances most of which belong to the flavanoid group. “Free Phenolic” means that these compounds are not bound to other compounds in the fruits and the phenolics are more available to absorb into the bloodstream. All you need to know is this, they are really, really, really good for you!
8. Eat Apples. Lose Weight
Researchers from the State University of Rio de Janeiro found that women who ate apples lost more weight on a low-calorie diet than women who didn’t eat fruit. And get this, one apple has more fiber than an entire bowl of bran cereal! With only 80 calories and 5 grams of belly-filling fiber, an apple is a dieter’s best friend. Check out this blog post about The New Apple Diet, which talks about a study that demonstrated that people who eat an apple 15 minutes before lunch consumed almost 190 fewer calories then when they didn’t have the apple!
9. Kick arthritis and osteoporosis with apples
Apples are one of the best dietary sources of boron, which is a bone-building mineral. The Journal of Applied Nutrition recently published a study that demonstrated a high probability that there is a connection between not having enough boron in your system and having symptoms of arthritis.
10. Apples can reduce breast cancer risk
Cornell researchers found that apple consumption can reduce breast cancer tumors. In their study with a group of rats with a known mammary carcinogen they found that the number of tumors was reduced by 25, 25 and 61 percent in rats fed, respectively, the equivalent of one, three or six apples a day.
Check out All About Apples for more information on the health benefits of apples.
Nothing says fall like a fresh, crisp apple, so after conducting research on the benefits of apples, I was excited to go pick my own apples from the local apple orchard. I visited Windy Hill Apple Orchard in York, SC. You can visit www.pickyourown.org to find local pick your own apple orchards in your area.
Come back and visit my blog tomorrow for the Top 5 Ways to Get Your Apple a Day blog post, which will be filled with five great apple recipes and more information about my experience at the apple orchard and picking our own apples. In the meantime, check out my recipe for awesome apple museli:
- ½ cup old-fashioned rolled oats
- ½ cup skim milk
- 1 apple, cored and chopped
- 2 Tbsp almonds
- 2 tsp honey
Combined oats and milk in a small bowl and let stand for 5 minutes. Stir in apple, almonds and honey.
Do you like apples? How do you enjoy eating them? Please share!