An apple is the fruit of the Apple tree, which has its origins in Asia and is included in the species Malus domestica and Rosaceae family. Because of its nutritional benefits, the apple tree is one of the most cultivated tree fruits in the world.
Varieties of Apples
There are many kinds of apples. Some of the common varieties include the Baldwin, crabapple, Gala, Graventstein, Lady apple, McIntosh, Pippin, Stayman and Winesap apple. The Baldwin apple has red skin with streaks of yellow. It has a mildly sweet and tart flavor and is mildly crisp in nature. The crabapple is small and has a rosy-red flesh. This apple variety has a strong sour taste and is great as a jelly ingredient. The Gala apple also has a rosy red skin. This apple variety is good for making pies and is just as good when eaten raw.
Nutrition in Apples
For a medium-sized apple, here are the approximate values of its nutrients: 10 mg of calcium, 81 calories, 22 g of carbohydrates, 5 g of dietary fiber, 4 mcg of folate, 0.25 mg of iron, 10 mg of phosphorus, 159 mg of potassium, 73 IU of vitamin A, 8 mg of vitamin C and fiber (soluble and insoluble).
The Benefits of Apples
The popular adage ‘an apple a day keeps the doctor away’ talks about how having a constant supply of the nutrients from apples in the body prevents us from getting sick and visiting the doctor. Apples are very good sources of the flavonoid Quercetin, which helps in stopping the growth of certain cancer cells. This fruit is said to help slow down the skin’s ageing process and prevents the appearance of wrinkles and promote hair growth. Apples have also been found to contribute to the healing of those people suffering from stroke or have asthma and type II diabetes.
It has been said that consistently eating apples improves the function of the lungs. Research has also suggested that apples could possibly protect women from osteoporosis. COPD, or ‘chronic obstructive pulmonary disease’ are said to be prevented by the flavonoids and antioxidants present in apples. Bowel function is improved by the phytonutrients and fiber that is found in apples. Apple juice has also been found to prevent the oxidation of LDL cholesterol. Colon cancer cells are inhibited from growing by the phytonutrients that are found in apple skins. The fiber that is present in apples help improve the body’s digestion and thus promote weight loss.