What exactly do they mean when they say, “An apple a day, keeps the doctor away.”?
This phrase is not so much new to your ears but if it is then you will probably hear it again and even more than once. “An apple a day keeps the doctor away”, this has been the song among nutritionists and well informed fellows and colleagues of us.
Often we get confused on the nutritional value of this fruit (apple) and doubt if it is even worth it to replace our well educated physicians. In fact, how is it even possible to compare a fruit and a person, leave alone even comparing an apple and a physician or rather a doctor.
First of all this fruit (apple) has a very rare texture and they come with their own packaging and this is to mean that you can eat the them with their skin and trust me you will never get disappointed since it is full of healthy nutrients.
In our bid in finding out the nutritional value of apple fruit, it should be known that apples are extremely rich and I insist extremely rich in very important antioxidants, flavonoids, and dietary fiber. Here are some quick benefits of apple and its constituents which we will discuss them more deeply later in our article; the many nutrients and antioxidants in the apple fruit or any product that comes as a result of the apple fruit may help in reducing the high risk of developing cancer, hypertension, diabetes as well as heart disease.
There are two types (main tough) types of apples:
- The red delicious. According to USDA scientists (they carried out a research to find in over 100 foods the measure of their antioxidant concentration per serving size) they ranked this type to be 12th
- The granny smith. According to USDA scientists they ranked this type of apple fruit to be 13th This shows how important these fruits are in our lives.
Let us start off by explaining the term antioxidants, antioxidants are disease fighting compounds. Going by what the scientists believe, these disease fighting compounds (antioxidants) help prevent and also repair oxidation damage that happens during normal cell activity.
It does not end there; the apple fruits are also rich in fibers called pectin. According to research carried out by scientists it is said that an apple of medium size has around 400 grams of fibers. Pectin is classed as a soluble, fermentable (it can ferment) and viscous fiber, this combination alone should start sinking in some meaningful explanation as to why apples have a much greater health benefits compared to other fruits. We have gone a step further and try in explaining some the health benefits that apple fruit offers. Here are some of them:
- Eating apples whiten and maintains healthier teeth; I should not be misquoted that I said an apple should be used instead of your toothbrush, never and never I repeat will at any time apple replace your toothbrush but rather by biting and chewing an apple, it will stimulate the production of saliva in the mouth thus reducing tooth decay by lowering the levels of bacteria. When there is a lot of saliva produced in your mouth then it will wash away any food debris that is left in your mouth making it even cleaner. The food debris if left there for a long time the will develop in to bacteria and later cause tooth decay or dental caries.
It prevents or avoids Alzheimer’s; scientists carried out research and found out that one of the benefits of apples is that when you drink apple juice you could be keeping Alzheimer’s away and also you are surely fighting the effects of aging on the brain. It is reported that the mice involved in the study, were fed with an apple- enhanced meal showed higher levels of the neurotransmitter acetylcholine and did better in maze tests than those other mice that were only on a regular diet taking just the usual meals lacking apples.
- It also offers protection against Parkinson’s; people who eat fruits and other foods that are high in fibre especially apples may have protection against Parkinson’s disease, the Parkinson’s disease is a condition commonly characterized by a breakdown of the brain’s dopamine- producing nerve cells. It has however been linked to the free radical- fighting power of the antioxidants contained in them.
- Eating apples helps you, as it prevents all sorts of cancers; the consumption of flavonol- rich apples might help in reducing your risk of developing pancreatic cancer by up to 23 per cent. Some researchers from Cornell University have identified some compounds, ‘triterpenoids’ that are in apple peel that have potent antigrowth activities against cancer cells in the liver, in the colon and also in the breast.
- Eating apples helps in reducing the risk of diabetes; know by just observation you will notice that women who eat an apple at least every day are more less likely to develop type 2 diabetes as compared to those who do not eat apples. This is because apple is loaded with soluble fibre which is the key to blunting blood swings.
- It helps in reducing cholesterol levels; as discussed earlier we have all seen that apples are very rich in soluble fibres, the soluble fibres found in the apples usually binds with fats in the intestine, which in turn it translates into lower cholesterol levels and thus leaving you with an even healthier body.
- It helps in preventing diarrhea and constipation; if you have ever been caught up in a situation where you have to spend a few days making sure that you are always close to the washrooms, then you understand the level of embarrassment that this fruit will save you from. Fibre that is found in apples can either pull water out of your colon to keep things moving along your back or it can even slow your bowel down by absorbing excess water from your stool.
- It controls your weight; I know it for a fact that maintaining or bringing up a healthier body one must also control their weights, this has however been the greatest challenge to many but when you take an apple every day you will have a great weight to start with.
- It detoxifies your liver; your liver is very important, it is the organ responsible for clearing toxins out of your body and thus your liver’s health should be a priority.
- It boosts your immune system; the red apples (types of apple that have more nutritional values than any other) contains antioxidant that is called quercetin. Quercetin can also help boost and fortify your immune system this is mostly when you have a lot of stress.