A friend of mine from China once told me quite proudly that he ate not one, but TWO apples everyday. He’d heard this American adage — an apple a day keeps the doctor away — and decided to take it up a notch. I was impressed. If the health benefits of apples truly existed, he had his bases covered.
The saying does lack accuracy. You could, for instance, slice your hand while cutting an apple and wind up in the doctor’s office. But eating apples actually can help your health.
Four Health Benefits of Apples
#1: Apples and Your Heart
The water-soluble fiber in apples helps lower blood cholesterol levels. The antioxidant compounds in the fruit inhibit inflammation and prevent plaque from forming on your artery walls. One study linked apples to a lower risk of death from heart disease.
#2: Apples and Cancer
Research suggests that apples may help reduce the risk of various cancers, including breast and colon cancer. Apples have a proven effect of lowering a person’s risk of lung cancer. Research continues into the power the apple’s antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties.
#3: Apples and Diabetes
Apples have soluble fiber and polyphenols, which can help control blood sugar levels. One study showed that women who ate at least one apple a day were 28 percent less likely to develop diabetes. Another study found that people who ate 3 servings of fruit a week had a 7 percent lower risk of developing type 2 diabetes.
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#4: Apples and Your Weight
At less than 100 calories and containing loads of fiber, apples keep you feeling full without packing on the calories. One study found that people who ate apple slices at the beginning of a meal consumed an average of 200 calories less than people who didn’t eat apple slices. Maintaining a healthy weight has been shown to offer many health benefits.
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