Fruits

Apple health benefits – Discover 7 properties of this fruit

The apple is a fruit that comes from the apple tree, a tree of Asian origin, which has been cultivated for thousands of years on the European and Asian continents. It is a fruit present in mythologies and is part of many cultures. It originates from the Latin term mala matiana , which means “apples of Macius”.

Research suggests that apples lose weight and may be linked to reduced risk of cancer, cardiovascular disease, asthma and diabetes.

The potential of so-called phytochemicals to reduce the risk of disease and contribute to health has drawn the attention of scientists, physicians and the general public. Apples, as well as their juices and extracts, have been included in studies around the world because of their high content of these substances.

Oxidative stress, known to play a role in the origin of most diseases, has been the focus of many studies.

Related processes on the influence of apples in the treatment of certain diseases include the reduction of tumor production and cell death, processes such as fat metabolism, inflammation, among others.

TYPES OF APPLE

Among the types of apple commonly available in the supermarket, four can be mentioned: Argentina, Fuji, Gala and Verde. Learn a little more about each of them below:

  • Argentina apple (65 kcal on average) : also called Red applebecause of its bright red color, sweet flavor and easy to digest.
  • Fuji apple (56 kcal on average) :  reddish and sometimes greenish in color, with a crunchy, juicy pulp and slightly sour flavor.
  • Gala apple (63 kcal on average) :  reddish-colored fruit, with a soft pulp and well sweetened when ripe.
  • Green Apple (65 kcal on average) : with a green color and crunchy pulp, it goes well with savory dishes. One of the benefits of green apples in relation to the others is that they have a greater amount of chlorophyll and are rich in Vitamin C, being powerful to cleanse the body of toxins.

Much has been said in the media about a food known as “Peruvian apple”, which is actually a tuber, being called that way because it has properties that resemble those of the traditional fruit. Among the benefits of the Peruvian apple, it is possible to mention:

  • strengthens the heart
  • Help with weight loss
  • Prevents anemia and osteoporosis
  • increases libido

Now, follow below some studies on the various properties of the apple and its protective capacity against various diseases.

APPLE BENEFITS

1. Apple Weight Loss Benefits –  Current guidelines recommend daily consumption of foods that are a good source of dietary fiber and have low energy density to promote weight loss. Based on this premise, a study was conducted on overweight women with high blood cholesterol levels to determine whether fruit intake had an effect on blood lipid concentrations and body weight. Participants were divided into 3 groups that received 3 different types of meals for 10 weeks.

Group 1: daily intake of 300 g of apples (approximately one and a half large apples);

Group 2: daily intake of 300 g of pear;

Group 3: instead of fruit, 60 g of oat cookies.

Each group was instructed to maintain a calorie-reduced diet designed to reduce body weight (deficit 250 kcal per day).

The results indicated that the addition of apples to the diet resulted in a significant weight loss of 1.32 kg after 10 weeks.

As such, it would be inaccurate to claim that apples alone induced weight loss based on this study. However, it is likely that its low calorie content and fiber content make apple consumption effective in weight reduction diets. Thus, apples can potentially be related to weight loss.

2.Benefits of apple against cancer – It is estimated that one third of all cancer deaths could be prevented by an improved diet, particularly by increasing consumption of fruits, vegetables and whole grains. There is convincing evidence that diets rich in fruits and vegetables are associated with reduced cancers of the lung, oral cavity, esophagus, stomach and colon.

More specifically, studies showed that apple intake was associated with a reduced risk of lung cancer. Recent trials have added results beyond clinical data suggesting a protective effect of apples on cancer risk.

In vitro studies have sought to examine the apple’s cancer potential. Colon cancer, the 4th most common and the 3rd most recurrent cause of death in Western society, has been the focus of many investigations. There have also been several studies that examined the potential of apples to reduce breast cancer risk.

Scientists believe that the apple’s antioxidant activity, including scavenging free radicals, is able to reduce cell proliferation and induce molecules capable of detoxifying the body.

3. Benefits of apple against cardiovascular disease –  Overproduction and high exposure of the body to oxidizing molecules can result in an imbalance leading to cell damage. Oxidative damage appears to be a factor that can lead to several chronic diseases, including cardiovascular disease.

In addition, lipids, popularly called fat, when in high amounts in the body are risk factors for many types of cardiovascular disease. Studies have indicated that apples have the power to act as an antioxidant, controlling this amount of lipids in our body, as well as eliminating molecules that cause damage to our bodies, thus reducing the risk of such diseases.

4.Benefits of apples against asthma and other lung problems –  The prevalence of lung diseases, particularly asthma, has increased in recent decades. It is speculated that environmental and lifestyle-related factors, such as reduced intake of dietary antioxidants, are contributing to the increase in these diseases.

The lungs are particularly susceptible to oxidative damage due to continuous high exposure to oxygen. Apples can have a protective effect because of their antioxidant potential and phytochemical content. A survey described the inverse association between apple consumption and the onset of asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, including bronchitis and emphysema

5. Benefits of apples against diabetes – The incidence of diabetes, especially type 2, has increased dramatically and is the subject of many studies around the world. New data suggest a possible link between apple consumption and reduced diabetes risk.

A large study by Women’s Health magazine sought to determine whether dietary flavonoids could influence the risk of diabetes.

There was a 27% decrease in the risk of type 2 diabetes associated with eating 2 to 6 apples per week compared to no apple consumption and 28% less risk considering eating an apple a day.

6.Benefits of apples for bone health – The loss of bone mass associated with osteoporosis is seen by scholars in the field as a global epidemic. Fruits and vegetables provide nutrients that appear to be associated with improved bone health (vitamin C, potassium, magnesium, and vitamin K), as well as producing metabolites that can improve bone health by reducing calcium excretion. Fruit and vegetable intake was associated with improved bone mineral density. Some studies examining the properties of apples suggest that it may have a positive impact on bone health.

One study demonstrated that the decline in estrogen (a female hormone) associated with menopause was related to increased production of inflammatory meters within the bone microenvironment. In this research, animals received a type of flavonoid called phlorizin, present in large amounts in apple peel. After 80 days of treatment, it was verified that the intake of this flavonoid improved the bone density of the animals.

7.Benefits of apples against gastrointestinal injuries –  Some studies have evaluated the potential of apples to reduce drug-induced gastric mucosal injuries. In one study, apple extract protected animal cells from oxidative damage. This protective effect was associated with its antioxidant capacity.

In vitro evidence indicates that compounds present in apples can even protect against gastric ulcers. A component of the bark was effective against H. pylori , a bacterium that is a major cause of ulcers. Another in vitro study has shown that apples may offer other beneficial effects on gastrointestinal health through an alternative mechanism. It can help through a process of reducing the risk of mutations and the onset of gastric cancer.

 GENETICALLY MODIFIED APPLE ARRIVES IN THE UNITED STATES

After being approved by the United States Department of Agriculture in 2015, transgenic apples will arrive in February 2018 in the North American country. Announced by the Canadian company Okanagan Specialty Fruits , the apple  ‘s greatest feature  is the fact that it doesn’t darken after being cut. This is possible due to the removal of the gene that produces the polyphenol oxidase enzyme, responsible for the oxidation of the fruit. This means that you can cut an  apple , eat one piece and save the other to eat later without the slice going bad.

Now that you know all the benefits of the apple, check out two delicious recipes to ensure your daily consumption of this fruit:

APPLE RECIPES

Apple crumble

  1. Peel 1 kg of apple and cut into cubes. Distribute the pieces on a baking sheet and sprinkle with cinnamon and a little sugar.
  2. In a refractory, place 200g of wheat flour, 100g of sugar and 150g of butter. Mix ingredients with your fingertips
  3. Cover the chopped apple with the mixture made previously.
  4. Bake the crumble for 20 minutes.

blender apple cake

  1. First, peel two apples, reserve the skin and chop the fruit pulp into cubes.
  2. Drizzle the chopped apple with lemon juice and sugar and set aside.
  3. Add the skin of the two apples, chop one more with the skin and beat in a blender with 3 eggs, 2 cups of sugar and ¾ cup of oil.
  4. Sift 2 ½ cups of all-purpose flour and 1 tablespoon of yeast.
  5. Add the dry ingredients to the whipped mixture, mix well and add the apple cubes.
  6. Bake in a greased tin in a preheated oven for approximately 35 to 40 minutes.

Related Matters:

Benefits and Properties of Green Apple

Benefits and Properties of Fuji Apple

Benefits and Properties of Gala Apple

Benefits and Properties of Apple Argentina

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Pineapple Benefits and Properties

Benefits and Properties of Carrot

Benefits and Properties of Quiuí

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Benefits and Properties of Banana

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Robert Asprin, APD is a non-dieting Accredited Practicing Dietitian passionate about inspiring positive changes in eating and lifestyle behaviors to help improve health while nurturing relationships with food and body.

Robert Asprin

Robert Asprin, APD is a non-dieting Accredited Practicing Dietitian passionate about inspiring positive changes in eating and lifestyle behaviors to help improve health while nurturing relationships with food and body.

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