Easy on the digestion, apples contain malic and tartaric acids that inhibit fermentation in the intestines. Their high fiber content adds bulk that aids the digestive process, making elimination natural and comfortable. New Hampshire apples contain pectin, a soluble fiber that encourages the growth of beneficial bacteria in the digestive tract.
Apples contain flavonoids, antioxidants that improve immune function and prevent heart disease and some cancers.
Green apples act as a liver and gall bladder cleanser and may aid in softening gallstones.
Because of their high water content, apples are cooling and moistening and aid in reducing fever. Simply grate them and serve them to feverish patients. Steamed apples sweetened with honey are beneficial for a dry cough and may help to remove mucous from the lungs.
Hippocrates (circa 400 BCE), the Greek physician considered the father of medicine, was a proponent of nutritional healing. His favorite remedies were apples, dates, and barley mush.
Today medical practitioners are beginning to recognize that the apple’s abundant quantity of pectin is an aid in reducing high cholesterol as well as blood sugar, a wonder food for people with coronary artery disease and diabetes.
If these aren’t enough reasons to “eat an apple a day,” there’s more. Eating raw apples gives the gums a healthy massage and cleans the teeth. This popular fruit is said to have properties that are a muscle tonic, diuretic, laxative, antidiarrheal, antirheumatic, and stomachic.
Unpeeled apples provide their most plentiful nutrients just under the skin. Apples are a good source of potassium, folic acid, and vitamin C.
A medium apple, approximately 5 ounces, has only 81 calories and a whopping 3.7 grams of fiber from pectin, a soluble fiber. A medium apple supplies 159 mg of potassium, 3.9 meg of folic acid, 7.9 mg of vitamin C, and 9.6 mg of calcium.
Additionally, there are trace amounts of B vitamins, iron, magnesium, and zinc.
Apple Nutrition Facts
*The nutritional value of apples will vary slightly depending on the variety and size.
Source: USDA Nutrient Data Laboratory -- Apple
By Joel Gebet
Gatineau, QB — It is said that you are what you eat, but according to Richard Beliveau, everyone knows this except for North Americans.
Dr. Beliveau, director of the molecular medicine laboratory at the Charles Bruneau Cancer Center at the Ste. Justine Hospital in Montreal, spoke at a seminar, here, at the Quebec Produce Marketing Association’s 59th annual convention titled “The Foods That Fight Cancer,” which is also the title of a book that he has co-authored on the same subject.
Dr. Beliveau told the audience about the astounding risks of cancer. “The real plague is cancer,” he said, “Europe, North America and Australia are the world champions with four times the cancer rate than those in Africa, India and Southeast Asia. Ten million people in North America have cancer and there is a death every five seconds. It would be like four 7475 crashing a day.
He said that people carry “microtumors” and that their lifestyles cause these tumors to regress or to evolve to a clinical stage.
“We are the only species to eat so badly,” he said. “Industrialization has destroyed 15 million years of evolution.”
Dr. Beliveau said that plants have approximately 8,000 molecules that have an effect on human health, such as the fungicides and insecticides that they create to ensure their own survival.
It is these molecules, known as phytochemicals, that Dr. Beliveau and his team of 35 researchers are trying to identify and utilize using “nutratherapy” to prevent microtumors from developing and attacking them when they are most vulnerable.
“A single portion of fruits and vegetables can contain anywhere from 10 to 100 phytochemicals, which have no side effects, only good effects,” he said. “In contrast, 98 percent of the molecules we create in the lab have side effects. When you consume fruits and vegetables, you are giving yourself a daily dose of chemotherapy,” he said.
Dr. Beliveau’s team of researchers has launched a “mega project” to study all fruits and vegetables that have anti-cancer properties, and the results so far have been astonishing. Among its early findings in the laboratory are a 90 percent inhibition of breast cancer by mushroom extracts, a nearly 100 percent inhibition of prostate cancer by raspberries and a nearly 100 percent inhibition of stomach cancer, for which there is no treatment, from the extract of a potato peel.
“We need to look at the major gastronomical traditions,” he said. “Fruits and vegetables have been associated with penance. We need to reintegrate them now with taste. Our message is quite simple: We are telling people to change their eating habits and discover fruits and vegetables. Eat them and eat a lot of them.”
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NH Fruit Grower's Association. All rights reserved.