Apples, be it red, green, yellow, or rose, are packed with countless vitamins, antioxidants, fiber, and other nutrients. Along with being excellent sources of energy, these oval shaped fruits are good for your skin, hair, and overall health. It is rightly said – ‘An apple a day keeps the doctor away’. The Red Delicious ones are the richest antioxidant sources, while Golden Delicious and Jonagolds varieties are packed with quercetin in admirable amounts. Read on further to know about the health, hair and skin benefits of apples.
Apple Benefits for Health:
1. Safeguards your heart:
Pectin, the soluble fiber in apples, prevents the accumulation of cholesterol along blood vessel wall lining, thus reducing the risk of atherosclerosis. The soluble fiber binds with fats in the intestine, preventing cholesterol rise in the body. Studies suggest that people who consumed 170 grams of apple a day are 50% less prone to stroke than those who did not. It contains potassium, a mineral that controls the blood pressure, reducing the risk heart attack.
2. Shields women against osteoporosis:
Apples are rich in the flavanoid phloridzin that safeguards women from osteoporosis during their menopausal stage. It also helps in rendering better bone density to women. Boron, found in apples, helps to strengthen the bones.
3. Good for your teeth:
Malic acid, present in apples, helps in cleaning the stains affecting the teeth, thus rendering whiter teeth. That is why it is one of the most prevalent ingredients in the commercial whitening toothpastes. Biting and chewing apple stimulates the production of saliva in the mouth, thwarting off the risk associated with tooth decay.
4. Keeps your gut clean and healthy:
Fiber rich apples are beneficial for intestinal disorders, including hemorrhoids, diverticulitis, and stomach cancer. Studies also indicate the use of apples to ease diarrhea and constipation. The high levels of fiber in apple pull water from the colon in case of constipation and absorb excess water in case of diarrhea. It cleanses and detoxifies the body, eliminating toxic metals such as lead and mercury. Regular intake of apple is known to reduce Clostridiales and bacteriodes in the large intestine.
5. Good for diabetics:
People with type 2 diabetes can snack on apples. A recent study suggests that people who consume at least one apple daily are 29% less likely to develop type 2 diabetes. Eat the fruit as a whole, and not in the form of apple juice. Certain compounds present in this fiber-rich fruit have the potential to prevent the enzymes from breaking down starch into simple sugars. Regular consumption of apples helps to control insulin levels by releasing sugar slowly into the blood stream. Being a natural source of soluble fibers, apples could also prevent drastic variations of blood sugar levels in diabetics.
6. For better lungs:
Apples are known to improve the health of the lungs. Regular inclusion of this fruit in your diet lowers the risk of respiratory diseases, including asthma, bronchitis, and emphysema.
7. Rich source of antioxidants:
The antioxidants present in apples improve the functioning of the immune system, thus protecting you from several diseases. It also minimizes the effects of free radicals in the body, thwarting off mental and physical degeneration.
8. Natural antidote for constipation:
Apple acts as a natural cleanser for the bowels, maintaining the proper functions of the digestive system. Fiber rich fruits like apple bind together the bits of food in the small intestine while drawing water to make the stool easier and softer to pass. Thus, it works as a natural antidote for constipation.
9. For a better immune system:
Apples contain the flavonoid quercetin, which is proven to improve the immunity levels. It also contains high levels of interleukin 4, a compound that induces the creation of infection fighting cells.
10. Improves neurological health:
Quercetin, the antioxidant present in apples, lowers the chances of cellular death triggered by oxidation of neurons. This, in turn, reduces the risk of dementia. The high levels of fiber and antioxidants in apples also protect from Parkinson’s disease. Regular consumption of apple juice can actually augment the production of the neurotransmitter acetylcholine in the grain. This, actually, results in improving the memory power and lowering the risk of age-related memory decline.
11. Natural anti-cancerous agent:
Apples are rich in anti-mutagenic, anti-proliferative, and anti-inflammatory properties. The high levels of flavonoids in apples help to reduce the risk of pancreatic cancer by up to 23%. Extracts from whole apple also reduce the risk of mammary tumors in the body. Oligosaccharides in apples kill up to 46% of cancer cells in colon. Regular consumption of apples also detoxifies the liver, preventing liver cancer.
12. For better energy levels:
Give yourself a dose of voluminous energy by munching an apple just before your endurance workout. Quercetin, the antioxidant, boosts the transportation of oxygen to the lungs. This, in turn, helps you exercise better and reap better benefits.
Apple Fruit Benefits for Skin:
Granny Smith and Red Delicious are known to be the best for the skin. Here are some of the benefits apples have in store for your skin:
13. Prevents premature ageing:
Apples are rich sources of Vitamin C, the vitamin that prevents premature ageing by boosting collagen synthesis. Along with Vitamin A, it scavenges the free radicals triggering the early onset of wrinkles, brown spots, and fine lines, the major signs of ageing. Hence include apples, along with its skin, at least thrice a week in your diet for a healthier and youthful skin.
14. Maintains your skin color:
Apple contains copper, a mineral required to produce melanin. Melanin is a pigment that provides color to the skin. It forms an essential part of other tissues as well, including the eyes and hair.
15. For a smooth, healthier skin:
Apple contains 0.40 milligrams of Vitamin E. Vitamin E helps the body to fight free radicals, protecting the skin from damage. This vitamin also helps in keeping the skin condition. This, in turn, ensures that the skin is healthy, smooth and young.
16. Skin regeneration:
Apple promotes the shedding of the old dead derma cells, thus paving way for the old skin cells skin regeneration and rejuvenation. Along with keeping the skin smooth, it keeps the skin free from irritations, inflammations, and redness.
17. Guards and heals your skin from sun:
Braeburn apple contains UVB defending particles, which protects the skin from sun damage. Apple should not be considered as a sunscreen substitute. It can only give you additional protection from the sunrays. To treat sunburn, add 1 teaspoon of glycerin to apple pulp. Mix it well and apply it on the affected areas. Wash it off with cold water to prevent blistering and skin peeling triggered by sunburns.
18. Skin disease:
Studies have indicated that eating an apple can reduce skin diseases. Regular consumption of apples provides the body with high levels of antioxidants, preventing cells and tissue damage.
How to use apples at home for better skin?
- Application of apple pulp on the skin maintains the pH value of the skin, preventing skin infections. Take mashed apple and mix 1-teaspoon honey to it. Apply it on the face for and leave it for 20 minutes. Wash it off and pat dry.
- Apple seeds are a rich source of Vitamin E. Mix ground seeds with honey to make a scrub. Use this scrub thrice a week to get rid of acne.
- Application of mashed apple on the face can also help to eliminate wrinkles and blemishes.
- Boil the apple slices in water and make a pulp out of it. Leave it aside to cool and apply it on the skin. This mask will make your skin bright and light.
- Mix the wheat germ oil with apple puree to make a fine paste. Apply it on the face and leave it for a while to dry. The wheat germ oil will exfoliate the skin to remove dirt and impurities, while apple puree will provide a glow to the skin.
- Green Apple juice is an excellent ingredient to tone tired and stressed out skin. Cut the green apple in small cubes and boil it in 300 ml water. Strain the infusion through a sieve and add 1/4th cup of witch hazel to it. Use this toner every night to get a smooth and glowing skin.
Apple Benefits for Hair:
19. Promotes overall hair health:
Apple contains several vitamins that promote the overall health of the hair. Vitamin E promotes blood circulation in the scalp, accelerating hair growth. Vitamin B-6 in apple produces melanin for healthy hair color, preventing premature ageing.
20. Controls hair loss:
Apples contain minerals like magnesium, potassium, copper, and calcium. All these minerals help in lowering hair loss and maintaining a healthy scalp. It contains procyanidin, a natural compound that encourages the protein to promote hair growth. Thus, eat an apple daily to get long and lustrous hair.
21. Apple seeds for a longer, smoother hair:
Many hair care companies use apple to develop solutions for hair growth. Apple seed contains Vitamin E, which stimulates the growth of the hair. It is also used as a conditioning agent in hair products.
22. Natural hair rinse:
Rinsing hair with apple cider vinegar or apple juice helps to balance the pH Levels of the hair, removing build up on your hair shaft. This makes the hair shiny, smooth and easy to manage.
How to make homemade apple juice?
Instead of shelling out huge bucks from your pocket to purchase your favorite brand of apple juice, you can prepare a glassful at home now.
- Red apples – 3, along with skin
- Sugar – according to taste
- Water – 5 cups
- Core apples and add it to a heavy bottom pan along with the peel and water.
- Allow the mixture to come boiling point, lower the heat, and simmer for about 30 to 40 minutes or until water absorbs the flavor and color of the apples. Keep stirring intermittently.
- Drain, discard the slices, and add sugar for extra sweetness.
- Allow to cool completely.
Delicious apple juice is ready to be served.
Benefits of Apple Juice
You can reap the following benefits by regular inclusion of apple juice in your diet:
- Drinking 12 oz. of apple juice daily reduces oxidation of low-density lipoprotein by 20%.
- Regular consumption of apple juice lowers the risk of coronary diseases. It also reduces the risk of metabolic syndrome.
- Apple juice lowers the levels of C-reactive protein, whose presence suggests an increased risk of diabetes.
- It is believed that drinking apple juice can slow the mental decline in people with Alzheimer’s disease.
Why should you eat apple peels?
- Eat apples with their skin to improve the levels of nutrients in the body. It provides two to six times more antioxidants than the fruit.
- The skin of apples is an excellent beauty-enhancing agent. Grind the skin of the apple into a fine paste and add two teaspoons of honey to it. Apply this paste regularly to get a beautiful skin.
- The phenolic compounds present in apple skins prevent the cholesterol from getting deposited on the arterial walls, reducing the risk of coronary artery disease.
- Apple seeds are toxic when eaten in high doses. It should be completely avoided by pregnant and lactating women.
- According to a research, non- organic apple juice may contain arsenic. So consume only organic apple juice.
- Apple has been found to be the most heavily pesticide contaminated fruit. The most common pesticides found are Permethrin and DDT. Try to purchase organic apples and wash them thoroughly before consuming.
Apple Nutritional Value:
Nutritive value per 100 g of fresh apple [Source: USDA]
|Total Fat||0.17 g||0.5%|
|Dietary Fiber||2.40 g||6%|
|Pantothenic acid||0.061 mg||1%|
|Vitamin A||54 IU||2%|
|Vitamin C||4.6 mg||8%|
|Vitamin E||0.18 mg||1%|
|Vitamin K||2.2 µg||2%|
Apples for weight loss
Munch an apple just before you indulge in your meal to shed those excess pounds. An apple contains just 60 calories, making it a perfect food for weight loss. A study has concluded that women who ate an apple before their meals lost almost 33% more weight that those who did not eat. Fiber in pectin keeps one full for longer time, acting as a natural hunger suppressant.
Do you eat apples? If not, then these benefits will surely tempt you to include apples in your diet.