Apples really keep doc away

Published 10:29am Friday, March 1, 2013

We’ve all heard the saying, “an apple a day keeps the doctor away,” but did you know there’s more truth to that old adage than most people realize?

That’s right, apples are really delicious, low in calories and still very inexpensive. The two most popular varieties are Red Delicious and Granny Smith, but there are literally hundreds of apple varieties to choose from.

Just why are apples so good for us anyway? Well, first, apples are a great source of both soluble and insoluble fiber.

The soluble fiber from apples comes in the form of pectin. Pectin helps prevent the build up of cholesterol in the lining of blood vessels, thereby helping reduce risk of heart disease. Insoluble fiber from apples provides bulk needed by the intestinal tract to help keep food moving through the body.

Pectin in apples also helps bring blood pressure to normal levels, and regulates the body’s blood sugar levels. Apples contain an exclusive flavanoid called phloridzin, which may protect post-menopausal women from osteoporosis by increasing bone density. Apples also contain boron, which strengthens bone.

Researchers believe that apples may reduce the risk of lung, breast, liver, prostate and colon cancers.

One Cornell University study showed children who drank apple juice on a daily basis, had fewer asthma symptoms than children who didn’t, and another Cornell study found that quercetin, found in apples,  protects brain cells from free radical damage, which may lead to Alzheimer’s disease. 

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