An apple a day keeps the doctor away, right? Have you ever wondered where this old saying comes from, or if it is actually true? Depending on its freshness and variety, an apple is a good source of vitamin C, which plays a role as an antioxidant in the body and helps to keep your immune system strong and able to fight off infections. Apples have been recommended as an age-old remedy to combat constipation, thanks to their soluble and insoluble dietary fibre content. Numerous studies have been done on apples and have associated them with reducing the risk of insulin resistance and type 2 diabetes, weight management, preventing the development of heart disease, promoting gut health, and managing cholesterol levels.
An apple is one of the best healthy snacks. Although experts agree that excessive consumption of sugar is a major contributor to obesity, whole, fresh, unprocessed fruits should not be placed in the same category as sweets, fruit juice, and sugar-sweetened beverages. Fruits contain a bounty of beneficial antioxidants and healthful nutrients, and their cellular structure, which is largely composed of what we know as dietary fibre, makes us feel full, helps to maintain healthy bowel function, and provides numerous metabolic benefits. The fibre that makes up the bulk of a fresh apple helps to slow down the absorption of sugars contained in the fruit, which gives the body more time to metabolise them.
Apples are one of the most abundant fruits and can pretty much be found on supermarket shelves and at farmer’s markets at any time of the year. Apples are convenient, flavoursome, versatile, and affordable, making them one of the most commonly appreciated fruits. Apples can be eaten raw or used in a variety of different cooked and baked dishes. It’s a good idea to wash apples just before consumption or use to remove any pesticide residues that may be present on their skin, but don’t peel them because their peels contain a lot of beneficial dietary fibre.
Take note that the nutrient composition of most fruits will vary with variety, environmental factors, freshness, and a number of other factors.
- The effect of fruit in different forms on energy intake and satiety at a meal
- Associations of dietary flavonoids with risk of type 2 diabetes, and markers of insulin resistance and systemic inflammation in women
- Dietary fibre intake and reduced risk of coronary heart disease in US men and women
- Apples and Cardiovascular Health – Is the Gut Microbiota a Core Consideration?
- Apples Good for Your Heart
- Making the Case for Eating Fruit