The apple is among the healthiest and most affordable fruits. Extremely rich in antioxidants, Vitamin C, and fiber, it makes for a great and healthy snack. Apples have numerous health benefits, and we give you 11 more reasons why you should eat an apple every day (besides to keep the doctor away).
1 Aids Weight Loss
With more than one-third of the adult population considered to be obese, the apple’s ability to promote weight loss is indeed welcoming news.
Two properties of this fruit that make it a good weight loss food are its high fiber content and its low energy density. Several studies have linked both of these properties to a reduction in calorie intake and considerable weight loss in the long term.
According to a study, participants who ate 1.5 large apples (approximate 300 grams) every day lost 2.9 pounds over a period of 12 weeks.
Another study has also shown that eating apples, especially half an hour or an hour before meals, helps in reducing calorie intake and thereby helps in weight loss.
For this reason, including apples into your weight loss diet is highly recommended. For the best weight loss effect, eat an apple half an hour before meals.
2 Lower Blood Sugar Levels & Protects Against Diabetes
Studies indicate that apples can help reduce the level of sugar in the blood and protect against Diabetes Type 2. In one study, participants who ate one or more apples every day were reported to have almost 30% lower risk of developing Diabetes Type 2.
This is because apples are extremely rich in fiber which when eaten in large amounts improve blood glucose control. They also contain antioxidants that slow down the digestion of sugars. Thanks to these two nutrients mainly, apples are a good choice for someone who is diabetic or prediabetic.
3 Prevents Cardiovascular Disease
Numerous studies have been done to investigate the relation between apples and risk factors for heart disease.
In one animal study, eating apples reduced total cholesterol levels and plaque buildup inside the arteries. Both cholesterol levels and plaque buildup are risk factors for heart disease. If the results of this animal study were true for humans as well, it would mean that eating apples can help protect against heart disease.
In one study done on humans by researchers from Finland, the risk of death because of cardiovascular disease was 43% less in women and 19% less in men who ate more than 1.9 ounces (54 grams) of apples every day.
4 Protects Against Cancer
In a study aptly named “Does an apple a day keeps an oncologist away?”, participants who ate an apple a day or more were found to have a lower risk of cancer.
Scientists from the American Association for Cancer Research also recommend the consumption of apples, which they believe can lower the risk of getting pancreatic cancer by as much as 23%.
Other researchers too have purported that apples can protect against cancers. For instance, researchers at Cornell University have managed to identify many compounds in the apple peel which help fight off cancer cells in the breast, liver, and colon.
5 Prevents Gallstones
People with high cholesterol level in the blood are at a greater risk of developing gallstones. Doctors frequently recommend gallstones patients and people with a greater risk of gallstones to eat fiber-rich foods like apples. Another alternative is to drink apple and grapefruit juice mixed with olive oil and Epsom salt to detoxify the liver.
6 Helps Avoid Alzheimer’s
One study has linked the consumption of apple juice in mice with a reduced risk of Alzheimer’s. While this has yet to be medically proven in humans, it is an encouraging sign as Alzheimer’s has no known cure.
7 Protect Against Parkinson’s
People who consume a lot of fiber-rich fruits like apples and other foods have a lower risk of developing Parkinson’s. Parkinson’s is a progressive disease of the nervous system marked by a breakdown of dopamine-producing nerve cells in the brain.
8 Prevents Asthma
Eating apple is good for asthma prevention and management. According to a British study, people who ate 2 to 5 apples every week were about 30% less likely to suffer asthma than those who didn’t.
This is because apples are a good source of flavonoids, which can help reduce inflammation in the airways. Another reason why they are good for asthmatics is because of phenolic acids present in them. These acids help asthma patients to breathe more freely, reducing the need for medications.
Moreover, eating apples is a good way to get your daily Vitamin C requirement. Vitamin C not only helps relieve inflammation in the airways but also keeps the lungs healthy and strong. It also strengthens the immune system. A stronger immune system, in turn, helps relieve asthma symptoms.
9 Strengthens Bones
As apples are a great source of calcium, they help to strengthen our bones and are overall good for bone health.
In addition to being rich in calcium, apples also contain certain antioxidants which help improve bone density, as well as a compound called boron which prevents bone fractures and strengthens them.
Apples also contain phloridzin, a polyphenol which plays a vital role in lowering the risk of osteoporosis.
10 Brightens Teeth
It seems eating an apple also keeps a dentist away. Eating an apple after meals can help in getting rid of yellow stains on the teeth. Apples are astringent and mildly acidic, two qualities that help it whiten and cleanse the teeth.
When chewed, apples work like a toothbrush and can help deal with obstinate stains. Eat crunchy apples for a few days (remember to chew them thoroughly), and you’ll surely find your teeth much brighter than before!
However, do keep in mind that like most fruits, apples contain acid and sugar. If they are left on your teeth, you might experience dental problems. Therefore, rinse your mouth thoroughly after eating apples and brush properly before sleep.
11 Detoxifies The Liver
Apple contains pectin, an antioxidant compound that has strong detoxification qualities. It helps remove excess cholesterol, unwanted metals, and other toxins from the body. A 2-day apple fast (that is, apples and/or apple juice being the only food you eat for 2 days) is a great way to detoxify the liver and improve digestion, among other things.