Apple is a fruit belonging to the genus Malus. It is native to Central Asia. It is juicy and crunchy to taste. It varies in color from dark and deep red, yellow to green. It is used in cooking, baking and eaten raw. There are more than 7000 apple varieties round the world. It is used in desserts like fruit salads, custards, apple pie, etc. Apple juice is also very popular around the world.
The nutritional profile of apple consists of vitamins (A, B1, B2, B3, B5, B6, B9, C, E and K), minerals (calcium, manganese, phosphorus, iron and magnesium), electrolytes (sodium and potassium), water, proteins, fats and dietary fiber. Important phytonutrients found in apple are lutein, zeaxanhin and b-carotene. They help the body to fight against detrimental effects of the free radicals. Thus, scientists and researchers also call apples as “nutritional powerhouses”.
Below are some exceptionally amazing health benefits the fruit offers.
1. Whiter and healthier teeth – biting and chewing an apple will stimulate your saliva in mouth resulting in more production, this will help in reducing tooth decay by lowering the bacterial numbers.
2. Promotes healthy digestion – for a healthy digestion and regular bowel movements, fiber-rich diet is must. One such ingredient is apple. Rich in soluble fiber, apple helps in smooth bowel movements, prevents form stomach disorders and prevents constipation. It also stimulates peristaltic motion so that the muscles contract and food moves smoothly down the intestine. It also stimulates digestive and gastric juices, which are very helpful in efficient nutrient uptake.
3. Curbs cancers – apples are full of flavonols, which help in reducing the risk of developing pancreatic cancer. The apple peels are rich in triterpenoids, which possess anti-growth activities against breast, liver and colon cancers. To reduce the risk of colorectal cancer, high fiber intake is generally recommended, which can be easily fulfilled by apple consumption.
4. Protects from Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s diseases – apple juice has been found to trigger the levels of neurotransmitter acetylcholine, which helps in reducing the risk of developing Alzheimer’s. Apple also helps in prevention of brain’s dopamine-producing nerve cells breakdown. Thus, it increases the capacity of fighting against free radical formation, which helps in prevention from developing Parkinson’s disease.
5. Cares for your heart – high-fiber apple is very useful in lowering cholesterol levels, as the fiber binds to the intestinal fat translating into lower levels of bad cholesterol. In addition, soluble fiber in apple slows down the buildup of cholesterol-rich plaque inside your arteries, which prevents your arteries from solidifying. This helps the blood flow normal and prevents from any coronary artery disease.
6. Combats diabetes – polyphenols are directly related to reducing the uptake of carbohydrates by the body, which reduces the blood sugar levels fluctuation. Not only this, polyphenols also help in reduced glucose absorption in the digestive tract and stimulate insulin release from pancreas, again which is necessary to keep sugar levels in check. The insulin receptors on the cells in the body are stimulated by the polyphenols speeding up the sugar removal from the blood and getting it into the cells. All these amazing functions are met by consuming one powerful fruit called apple.
7. Fights obesity – the seven different apple varieties, rich in bioactive compounds, benefit the good gut bacteria preventing from obesity and its associated problems.
8. Prevents eye disorders – apples help in improving eyesight and treating night blindness, because they are rich in antioxidants and flavonoid compounds, which minimizes the effect of free radicals. Thus, they prevent from glaucoma and macular degeneration.
9. Deals with respiratory problems – apples possess strong anti-inflammatory properties, which are crucial in respiratory problems like asthma, as inflammation is the root cause of respiratory disorders.
10. Fights rheumatism – apples are found to aid in healing process because of their flavonoids, thus prevents from inflammatory conditions such as gout and arthritis. Flavonoids found in apple include quercetin, myricetin and kaempferol.
Other benefits include prevention from cataracts, boosting immune system, liver detoxification, averting hemorrhoids, neutralizing bowel syndrome, beating diarrhea, treating anemia, preventing from kidney and gallstones, removing weakness by adding more vitality and vigor, etc. There are so many other unknown and possible nutrients in apples, which are responsible for unlimited health perks they offer, making them the world’s healthiest and favorite fruits.
By now, you must have understood the most known adage “An apple a day, keeps the doctor away”. The boons it brings to your health and lifestyle is worth appreciating. Including a bowl full of sliced apples as snacks is a healthy suggestion. Start today and help others to stay healthy.
You can enjoy N number of apples anytime. There is no restriction on having excess amount of it, as no side effects are associated. Just note that do not consume the seeds of apple, as they contain a powerful poison called cyanide. Eating too many seeds could result in fatal outcomes. Thus, do not consume apple seeds. Enjoy the antioxidant- and polyphenols-rich peel and the soluble fiber- and water-rich flesh.