Health Benefits of Apples
Apples are among the most widely cultivated fruits in the world. It is also the same fruit that is mentioned in one of the world’s most famous phrases, ‘An apple a day keeps the doctor away.’
The reason this statement is repeated so often is because it is true. Below are some of the benefits that you can get from eating an apple a day.
Promotes Better Satiety
Eating apples demands a lot of chewing and when you spend time chewing you are sending signals to your brain telling you that you have had enough to eat. The result of this impulse is to reduce the likelihood of bingeing on other foods, which could end up being less healthy calorie-rich foods.
Apples contain natural sugar that gradually enters the bloodstream, which helps keep blood sugar and insulin levels stable. This is the same reason why eating apples instead of sugar-laden processed foods will help you avoid experiencing the nasty effects of a sugar rush and subsequent sugar crash that can then cause further food cravings.
Reduces Blood Fats
Eating apples has been shown to help reduce blood fats. Studies conducted on the effects of eating apples showed that pectin is helpful for its fat lowering effects. Also, the combination of fiber and phytonutrients helps reduce the risk of cardiovascular diseases, as this combination helps prevent the oxidation of LDL cholesterol in the blood.
Improves Gut Health
A study conducted at the New Zealand Institute for Plant and Food Research Limited showed that the polyphenol-content of apples can help influence the bacterial population in the gut, resulting in reduced levels of inflammation and improved gastrointestinal health.
Improves Brain Health
Apple and its natural juice are known to help protect the brain’s nerve cells against inflammation as well as oxidative stress. These factors contribute to deteriorating cognitive performance and as such is commonly associated with aging.
Another reason why apples help improve brain health is that they contain antioxidants that reduce the number of free radicals in the body, some of which can cause damage to the central nervous system.
A study conducted on people with Alzheimer’s showed that consuming 8 ounces of apple juice for one month helped improve the participants’ psychotic and behavioral symptoms.
Another factor that contributes to the improvement and prevention of Alzheimer’s disease is the ability of apples to increase the levels of neurotransmitter acetylcholine which is known to be responsible for improving memory.
Numerous studies have shown that high levels of acetylcholine in the brain can help prevent the onset of mental decline. Additionally, the antioxidant quercetin works well in protecting the brain against the adverse effects of neurotoxicity.
Lowers Cancer Risk
Another study revealed that a high consumption of apples can help prevent cancer. The study followed almost 10,000 cancer-free people for several decades and their findings indicated that those who had the highest consumption of apples and other flavonoid-rich foods, were able to reduce their risks of cancer by up to 20%.
However, flavonoids are not the only cancer-fighting compounds that apples have. They also contain a specific form of complex carbohydrate known as oligosaccharides which are known to help induce cancer cell death.
As you can see, eating an apple a day may be just what the doctor ordered!