As a popular fruit that is widely cultivated and consumed the world over, an apple is considered as one of the top healthy foods. There are many varieties of this fruit including Granny Smith, Red delicious as well as others. And due to the fruit having in it disease fighting compounds (antioxidants) as well as soluble dietary fiber, an apple is therefore very special with tremendous health benefits, hence the “apple a day” common proverb. Highlighted below are some of its benefits.
1. Apples keep you feeling full.
The large amount of fiber in the fruit is capable of making you feel full for a longer time without costing you great amounts of calories. This is due to the longer time required for the body to digest complex fiber as compared to more simpler materials such as refined grains or sugars.
2. An apple prevents breathing problems.
Taking atleast 5 apples a week has been commonly associated with improved lung function according to a report by “Health Magazine”. Further reports suggest that this may be due to the antioxidant (by the name quercetin) found in the thin skin of apples. In addition to this, studies show that women who consume the fruit in plenty have reduced chances of giving birth to children with asthma.
3. Decreased risk of diabetes.
Apples are also known to lower your risk of developing diabetes especially for women. A recent study found that people who eat atleast one apple daily have a lower risk (by 7%) of developing the type 2 diabetes as compared to others who did not.
4. Improving neurological health and boosting brain power.
A study in 2006 published in the “Experimental Biology & Medicine” journal found that the quercetin (mentioned earlier) was one of the two compounds that facilitated reduction of cellular death of nerve cells. Another study showed that consumption of apple juice affect the brain positively leading to improved memory, and generally improved neurological health in addition to lowering the risk of dementia and other disorders such as Alzheimer’ disease.
5. Reduces risk of stroke.
Another research study showed that intake of apples over a prolonged period of time is related to reduced risk of getting Thrombotic stroke.
6. Apples lower bad cholesterol.
A medium-sized apple has about 4 grams of fiber some of which is in form of pectin-a type of fiber associated with lower levels of undesirable cholesterol (LDL). According to “WebMD”, this soluble fiber hinders absorption of cholesterol helping the body use it instead of storing it, hence improving your health.
7. Curbing cancer.
Some researchers from Cornell University, the American Association for Cancer Research, the National Cancer I. in the United States and others have discovered the potential of apples to reduce risk of pancreatic cancer (by 23%), liver, colon, breast as well as colorectal cancer.
8. Apples help prevent obesity.
One of the components of an apple’s peel is Ursolic acid which, according to “HuffPost Uk”, is associated with a reduced risk of obesity by boosting calorie burn and increasing brown and muscle fat due to the fiber in it. Normally, being overweight is linked with many problems such as heart disease, stroke, sleep apnea, high blood pressure etc.
9. Apples fight colds while boosting your immune system.
Though not as much as oranges, apples are considered to be another good source of Vitamin C (an immune system booster) with slightly over 8mg per a medium -sized fruit that amounts to 14% of your recommended intake per day. This then helps to fight colds to some extent. The antioxidant (quercetin) in them also helps to fortify and boost your immune system according to some credible studies.
10. Ensuring healthier teeth.
Although not to be used as an alternative to a tooth brush, apples when chewed stimulate production of saliva in the mouth reducing possible tooth decay by reducing bacteria levels.
Other useful benefits include protecting against Parkinson’s disease effected by the antioxidants; ensuring a healthier heart due to its high soluble fiber; prevention of gallstones caused by high body cholesterol; beating diarrhea and constipation hence neutralizing Irritable Bowel Syndrome; helping in alleviating Hemorrhoids; prevention of cataracts and detoxification of the liver among other potential health benefits.
Therefore with its many benefits, it goes without saying that apples might well be among the best and most healthy foods to consider including in your normal diet and having done this, you’ll definitely experience the positive change in your health.