Why You Should Eat More Apples
We’ve all heard the saying, “an apple a day, keeps the doctor away.” But is that entirely true? Well, yes. Apples are packed with essential nutrients that can keep your body healthy and protected against illness.
When you eat an apple, you absorb phytonutrients. These nutrients can protect against constipation, type 2 diabetes, breast cancer, high cholesterol, and assist in weight control.
With all these benefits, who wouldn’t want to include apples into their diet?
The Health Benefits
From vinegar to pie, apples are often used to create delicious and highly nutritious recipes. Packed with antioxidants and vitamins, apples are also used to ease ailments, such as heartburn and an upset stomach.
Their health benefits come as no surprise. Apples and their leaves have been used for centuries, to treat inflammation, swelling, boils or infected bites. In Ayurvedic medicine, it is known that constipation can be cured with the help of stewed apples. Additional, known benefits are greater energy, weight loss, cleared sinuses, allergies, and colds.
Apples are a high-antioxidant food. In the U.S., it is estimated that 22 percent of the antioxidants consumed come from apples. Because of the high concentration of antioxidants, apples are key in fighting against free radicals.
Apples are also considered anti-inflammatory. These characteristic links apples with the prevention of specific cancers, including prostate and breast cancer. Studies even suggest that the protective phytochemicals in the skin of apples can help inhibit the reproduction of cancer cells within the colon.
Also, when eating apples, make sure to eat the skin. Researchers have found that the consumption of fruit peels have led to a significantly higher level of antioxidant activity.
Combating Heart Disease
Many studies show that people who included more plant foods experience less inflammation and in turn have a reduced risk of cardiovascular disease.
Pectin, a type of fiber found in apples, is especially known for lowering cholesterol levels. In 2003, a study discovered that rats fed on a diet high in apple pectin extract had lower levels of cholesterol absorption than rats who did not consume this diet. Furthermore, the rats on the diet containing apple pectin and dried apples experienced greater benefits in intestinal fermentation and lipid metabolism.
A longitudinal study following adults over a 15-year period found that a greater intake of fruits and vegetables was associated with a lower risk of cardiovascular disease. There has also been evidence to prove that antioxidant-rich fruits, like apples, play a role in preventing strokes, pulmonary disease, and hypertension.
Healing The Gut Microbiome
There has been extensive research that shows that consuming enough fiber can help most digestive issues, like irritable bowel syndrome (IBS).
In general, a higher intake of fruit is correlated with better digestive health, regarding the colon, stomach, and bladder. Fruit nutrients positively impact the gut microbiome, which aids in healthier digestion and greater immune responses.
Additionally, the phytonutrients found in apples protect your body’s digestive organs from oxidative stress, balancing pH levels.
That’s not all. The pectin in apples is also helpful in relieving constipation and is often used as a natural diuretic. Apples have mild laxative effects, which can help in combating a bloated stomach and reducing water retention.
Reduces The Risk Of Diabetes
You’re probably confused about how apples can prevent diabetes. Apples have sugar and sugar is one of the main things that diabetics are often told to watch out for. However, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has stated that consuming five or more servings of fruits and vegetables a day can significantly reduce the risk of diabetes in adults.
In addition, there are certain flavonoids found in apples that can improve insulin sensitivity. Improving insulin sensitivity is pivotal in preventing diabetes and weight gain.
If you’re still not sold, get this: apples are considered to have low glycemic potency. And when compared to food items filled with refined carbohydrates or added sugar, apples clearly come out on top. Apples, and most other fruits, release sugar to the bloodstream at a slower rate, which is essential in supporting normal levels of insulin production.