These days, it seems there are new “superfoods” making headlines every week. With all this hype about superfoods, there is one tried and trusted food that may be getting overlooked. Apples are the original superfood. Nutritional powerhouses, apples are one of the most beneficial foods a person can consume. The health benefits of apples range from preventing cancer to oral hygeine. I’m sure you’ve heard the old adage “an apple a day keeps the doctor away”, but is this actually true? Let’s take a closer look at the impressive health benefits of this amazing fruit.
Apples are some of nature’s best cancer fighters. To take advantage of all this fruit has to offer, it is recommended to consume apples with their convenient edible packaging. An apple’s peel contains such things as triterpenoids, which help to fight numerous cancers, particularly breast and liver cancer. The peel of an apple has also been shown to turn on a cancer-suppressing protein in the human body called maspin. Apples are very high in fiber, a big weapon in preventing colon cancer. The middle, white-part of an apple contains a high amount of the fiber pectin. Pectin is used by the G.I. tract to produce cell protecting compounds. Numerous studies have found that consuming just one apple a day can greatly reduce the risk for colorectal cancer.
According to recent studies, apples contain certain compounds that help reduce the risk for Alzheimer’s disease. A study conducted by researchers at Cornell University concluded that a potent antioxidant contained in apples aids the brain in fighting off Alzheimer’s disease by protecting brain cells against oxidative stress. Out of all fruits and vegetables, apples have some of the highest concentrations of this powerful antioxidant known as quercetin. Turns out, quercetin helps with all things neurological, so eating at least one apple a day could support a lifetime of brain health.
As if cancer prevention and neurological health were not enough to convince you of the greatness of this amazing fruit, apples are jam-packed with a whole host of vitamins and minerals that are essential for a healthy life. Apples contain good amounts of potassium, vitamin K and vitamin C, making them excellent for immune support. Regular consumption of apples has also been linked to a lower risk of heart disease. Antioxidants and phytonutrients in apples protect against LDL (low-density lipoproteins), the damaging portion of cholesterol in the bloodstream. Powerful antioxidants known as polyphenols are found in abundance in apples. Polyphenols can slow the aging process, making skin appear younger and healthier. Wouldn’t ya know it, apples act as natural toothbrushes, cleaning teeth and eliminating harmful bacteria.
So yeah, you get the idea. Apples are one of the most nutritious foods on the planet. As a converted apple advocate, I am a firm believer in this amazing fruit. When I was a child, I couldn’t stand apples. I also had a tremendous fear of doctors. After hearing that eating apples could possibly help me avoid the borderline traumatic experiences of doctor visits, I forced myself to eat at least one apple a day. My disdain for apples quickly faded. These days, apples are my favorite and I try to eat at least one a day.
Does an apple a day keep the doctor away? Yes and no. Eating one apple a day doesn’t mean you’ll never get sick or totally avoid the need to see a physician. However, eating one apple a day can have an incredible impact on your physical and mental health. I have yet to find a downside to eating apples. If you’re wanting to clean up your diet and become a healthier version of yourself, incorporating this delicious superfood into your daily diet could be a game changer.