Depicted in most religious art and writing as the forbidden fruit in the Garden of Eden, apples – as far as nutritious is concerned – are of a much better reputation today, at least a healthier one.
Although consumed less frequently than bananas, apples are still an America-favorite, the population consuming an average of 44 pounds of apples every year (last count in 2012), and that is per capita.
Some lesser known facts about apples
Apples are versatile fruits that people as far back as the Stone Age consumed, or so historical evidence suggests.
- Cave drawings dating from the prehistoric period indicate that apples were even dry-stored for winter more than 10,000 years ago. Of course, the fruit from then was different to our apple today, but it is nevertheless an extraordinary thing that the apple draws heritage from such distant times.
Apples were popular with the Greek and with the Romans.
- In fact, apples were apparently the favorite fruit of the Greeks and the Romans and thanks to the Romans and their conquering abilities, the apple tree spread in various parts of Europe, and it was also the Romans who brought it to England.
The Romans taught the French how to grow apples.
- About two dozen varieties of apples are known to have existed during the Romans who perfected growing and introduced their knowledge to the French who, in turn, developed cider-making and apple desserts.
The oldest variety still grown today is the Lady apple.
- Back in the day, new apple varieties were named after the finder, the place of origin or a benefactor. Among the oldest varieties that have made it to our times and is still cultivated today is the Lady apple that originates in Bretagne, France. According to ancient documents, this variety was consumed as early as the first century A.D.
China grows the largest amount of apples, but Washington State produces about 70% of the U.S. apples
- Although the U.S. does produce a lot of apples with Washington state producing the majority of them, it’s China that grows more apples than America and than any other country in the world.
Why an apple a day really keeps the doctor away
Rich in antioxidants, and not just any type of antioxidants but the most important and relevant for health, also rich in flavonoids and phytonutrients, apples provide more than just a handful of benefits.
- Reduce the cholesterol level: they contain soluble fiber, which studies have shown to lower the level of bad cholesterol in the body.
- Support weight loss: apple peel contains ursolic acid, a compound that bodybuilders consume to lose body fat and gain strength.
- Benefit for neurological health: rich in quercetin, which is a powerful antioxidant, apples can improve neurological health when consumed regularly and prevent neurodegenerative diseases such as dementia and Alzheimer’s disease.
- Lowers the risk of developing breast cancer: containing a variety of phenolic compounds and representing one of the greatest sources of phenols, apples ward off breast cancer and type 2 diabetes.
- Promote bone health: with antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties, apples help maintain strong bones, promoting bone health and preserving bone mass with aging.
- Detoxify the body: containing soluble fiber, apples encourage the body to eliminate heavy metals.
- Apples may help with skin diseases: daily consumption of at least one fruit can help with preventing various skin diseases and reduce skin diseases were already installed.
- Apples reduce tooth decay: eating apples helps produce more saliva, which subsequently lowers bacteria in the mouth and prevents tooth decay.
- Fight constipation: fiber in apples can help with bowel movement by promoting proper digestion and relieves diarrhea by absorbing excess water in stool.
- Apples promote eye health: rich in antioxidants, lowers the risk of developing various eye diseases including cataracts.