Apple is a fleshy fruit of the apple tree called malus domestica. It can be domesticated where it is grown in orchards or grows in the wild as mostly seen in Central Asia where it has its origin. The tree grows up to 3 to 12 metres with long leaves.
China, United States of America, Iran, Turkey, Russia and Italy are the greatest producers of apples.
Apples contain water about 85 percent, carbohydrates ( fibre and sugar), potassium and vitamin C. Apples have no cholesterol but little quantity of calcium is present. The health benefits of apples are therefore due to the presence of water, fibre, vitamin C and potassium.
Below are the benefits of daily apple consumption.
Apple contains a lot of Vitamin C which is required for the promotion of cell integrity in our body. Vitamin C is also an antioxidant which fights against free radicals that damage our cells. It is therefore said to increase our resistance to diseases.
2.Promote the health of the heart
Apple contains plenty of soluble fibre; high intake of soluble fibre reduces absorption of cholesterol and bile acid (which are also rich in cholesterol) from the small intestines, thereby reducing blood cholesterol level. When soluble fibres are broken down by bacteria in the intestines, some fatty acids released are said to reduce the production of cholesterol by the liver. By lowering blood cholesterol, fibres help to reduce the risk of heart disease.
Apple also contains plenty of potassium which helps to prevent irregular heart beat and to reduce risk of stroke.
3.Fight against cancer
Apple is rich in fibres; many studies in the last three decades have shown a link between increased fibre in-take and a decrease in colon cancer. This could be due to the fibre itself or the nutrients that are usually in fibre-rich foods such as vitamins, minerals, phytochemicals and essential fatty acid. Daily consumption of 2/3 apples is highly recommended.
4.Improves Management of diabetes
Apples contain a form of soluble fibre called pectin which helps in the lowering of blood sugar by discouraging absorption of glucose from the gut. The fibre in apples also gives the feeling of satiety thereby reducing the total food consumption of the individual
Apples are therefore helpful in the treatment of diabetes.
Apple as said earlier is rich in fibre which adds bulk to stool, making bowel movement easier. Insoluble fibre does this better. When plenty of fibre is consumed, the stool is large and soft, this stimulates the muscles of the intestines to contract, pushing out the stool (faeces) without the individual straining himself.
With little fibre in the food, the stool is usually small and hard and therefore requires force to come out. Regular straining during the passage of faeces can lead to piles (haemorrhoids) and other conditions such as pouches (diverticulosis) in the large intestines. Piles can lead to anaemia due to bleeding.
6.Promotes Weight loss
Studies have shown that women who ate about two to three apples a day lost more weight than those who did not. This may be due to the fibre contained in apple giving the individual a feeling of a full stomach.
7.Maintains a Health skin
Apple is high in vitamin C , an antioxidant. This vitamin works to fend off cell damage from free radicals. Consequently, it helps to improve the texture of our skin, makes it smoother and reduces wrinkles.
Eat two to three apples daily if you can afford to do that.