An Apple a Day
Apples provide many health benefits, especially during the fall season when they are picked fresh and local.
Apples are one of the best sources of flavonoids and phytochemicals (compounds in plants, fruits, and vegetables) that are potent antioxidants and help protect our body from a host of degenerative illnesses, including cancer. Studies have shown that quercetin, a flavonoid found in apples, has been a key component to preventing the growth of prostate cancer cells. The skin of the apple has been shown to inhibit the growth of colon cancer cells by as much as 43%. Lung and bladder cancers have been slowed as well.
Apples contain high water content at approximately 80%, and living enzymes that help to improve digestion throughout the system. They contain a great source of fiber—pectin—which also helps to improve colon function, along with improving blood cholesterol levels.
Fructose, a simple sugar, is responsible for giving apples their sweetness. Unlike many other forms of sugar, the sugar found in an apple breaks down slowly. This, when combined with the fiber in apples, helps prevent spikes in blood sugar and will more likely be converted to natural energy for the body.
The apple contains over 200 nutrients, and potassium is found in large amounts. Apples are also a good source of many vitamins, especially vitamin C. Actually, eating 100 grams of apple will give you the equivalent of 1,500 milligrams worth of this potent antioxidant. Apples may also help those with anemia, as they contain iron.
Raw organic apple cider vinegar has been widely and successfully used for a long list of ailments. Among other things, cider vinegar is very effective in detoxifying various organs of the body. It helps to break down mucous and fatty deposits and helps the body achieve a healthy state of alkalinity. I recommend it often in those having trouble digesting their food.
The Apple Diet Cleanse was frequently recommended by health guru and “sleeping prophet” Edgar Cayce (1877-1945). The diet is simple. Three days of organic apples, plenty of water, and, on the night of the third day, two to three tablespoons of cold pressed olive oil. You are to take it easy while on this cleaning protocol and get plenty of rest. I have seen people drop a few pounds and clear up the whites of eyes as part of the detoxifying effect it has. My only caution would be to make sure you are drinking plenty of water. Remember, apples contain fiber, which may constipate you if you do not follow through with adequate amounts of water.
One of the most fascinating qualities of the apple is that they help to balance the body. In constipation, the apple can help “move things along” while those suffering from diarrhea will get relief by “slowing things down.” For those needing to lose weight, the apple provides fiber, which helps to keep the body feeling full and prevents food cravings. If weight gain is needed, the apple provides assistance as well.
There are many other benefits from eating apples. “An apple a day keeps the doctor away” has an increasing number of supportive scientific evidences for its claim.
Catherine Stack (RN, ND) is the author of the “Natural Health” column for the Niagara Gazette. She is also a practicing Doctor of Naturopathy, Certified Nurse Midwife, and the founder and CEO of Journey II Health Center for Rejuvenation. Her book, Free Yourself from a CONSTIPATED Life, is available on Amazon. Visit her website at journeyiihealth.com or email email@example.com.