An apple a day…

You can be a physicist, historian, doctor, sportsman, religious follower, chef, story-loving child or a health-freak, APPLE is the fruit that must be close to your heart.

The contribution of this ‘forbidden fruit’ goes from inspiring Isaac Newton about gravitational force, to providing a sodium- & cholesterol-free source of antioxidants exhibiting anti-cancer properties. Though an old English adage says, ” To eat an apple before going to bed, will make the doctor beg his bread.”, a doctor also bonds with it through ‘Adam’s Apple’ in the early Anatomy classes

 ORIGIN

Apple (Malus domestica) is a pomaceous fruit from the family of Rosaceae (rose) and ranks as one of the most widely cultivated tree fruits. Finding its origins in the wild mountains of Central Asia, today there are more than 7500 known varieties of apples that are cultivated across the world. Most of these varieties are eaten fresh, though some are specially used for cooking or making cider.

Apple trees are deciduous, which means their leaves fall off at the end of the growing season.

NUTRITION

Apples are bulky for their caloric content (like most fruits and vegetables) and thus ranks amongst the negative-calorie fruits. A medium-sized apple provides only 80 calories. Water and air constitute almost 80% of Apple’s volume [that is why it floats].

HEALTH BENEFITS

Apples not only are cholesterol free but also help to reduce existing cholesterol by preventing re-absorption, thus helping people with heart disease, obesity and high lipids.

Research suggests that apples may reduce the risk of colonic cancer, prostate cancer and lung cancer, possibly due to the phenolic compounds (quercetin, epicatechin and procyanidin B2) they possess, that have anti-oxidant properties. According to the USDA, apples and apple juice are among the top 20 foods with the highest antioxidant content per serving.

The fiber content, though less than in most other fruits, helps to regulate bowel movements.

Apple juice concentrate has been found to increase the production of the neurotransmitter acetylcholine in mice, providing a potential for protecting the brain from the effects of oxidative stress.

APPLE FACTS

  • Apples ripen almost ten times faster at room temperature, thus keep them stored in the refrigerator.
  • Store apples away from strong-smelling foods to prevent them from absorbing unpleasant odors.
  • Coat sliced and diced apples with a mixture of one part lemon juice to three parts water, to prevent browning.
  • Don’t peel your apple. Two-thirds of the fiber and lots of antioxidants are found in the peel.
  • Apple day is celebrated on 21st October.