7 Health Benefits of Apples
Will an apple a day keeps the doctor away? Perhaps not, but there’s certainly a whack of research supporting the many health benefits of apples.
Apples might help stave off Alzheimer’s disease
The health benefits of apples include the potential to ward off Alzheimer’s disease. Apples contain quercetin, a powerful antioxidant that protects brain cells from degeneration in rats and might do the same in humans. Dr. Ramani Soundararajan from Dalhousie Medical School and Dr. Vasantha Rupasinghe at the Nova Scotia Agricultural College found that the flavonoids in Red Delicious apples had strong neuroprotective effects.
Apples can help prevent high blood pressure
There is overwhelming evidence that one-third of all cancer cases and half the incidences of cardiovascular disease and hypertension can be attributed to diet. Because apples are high in potassium, a mineral that helps control blood pressure, they can help reduce the risk of stroke.
Apples can protect your heart
University of California-Davis researchers found that apples and apple juice may help slow the oxidation process that is involved in the build up of plaque that leads to heart disease. Participants added only two apples or 12 ounces of apple juice to their diet daily and positive effects were evident after only six weeks.
Apples can help reduce cholesterol
A medium apple provides five grams of fibre-more than most cereals. They’re also packed with pectin, a soluble fibre that reduces cholesterol. Pectin prevents cholesterol from building up in the lining of blood vessel walls, thus reducing the risk of atherosclerosis and heart disease.
Apples offer protection against colon cancer
When the natural fibre in apples ferments in the colon, it produces chemicals that help fight the formation of cancer cells, according to new research from Germany.
Apples can help asthma sufferers
A study completed at Aberdeen University found there is strong evidence that a healthy diet rich in anti-oxidants and vitamins is good for asthma. Researchers found that when children sipped on apple juice their symptoms were relieved. Dr Peter Burney, who led the project, believes that the ‘phytochemicals’ in apples, such as flavonoids and phenolic acids, help calm inflammation in the airways.
Apples provide bone protection
Researchers believe that a flavonoid called phloridzin-found only in apples-may protect post-menopausal women from osteoporosis and may also increase bone density. Boron, another ingredient in apples, also strengthens bones.