The apple is a fleshy fruit, with tough skin, ranging in color from greenish yellow to red. A sub-acid fruit, it is one of the most valuable fruit of all the fruits. The apple is considered to be “protective” and most wholesome of fruits. It plays an important role in the normal development of metabolic function i.e. the chemical and physical changes that take place within the body and enable its continued growth and functioning.
The apple is a highly nutritive food. It contains minerals and vitamins in abundance. The food value of the apple is chiefly constituted by its contents of sugar which ranges from 9 to 51 percent. Of this, fruit sugar constitutes 60 percent and glucose 25 percent and cane sugar only 15 percent.
Raw apples generally contain a small quantity of starch which gets wholly converted into sugar during the process of ripening. The acid content of the apple is also increased together with tire sugar. The acid is constituted mostly by malice acid which is completely utilized by the body. The vitamin content decreases gradually towards the center of the fruit. The skin also contains five times more vitamin A than the flesh.
The old saying “An apple a day keeps the doctor away“ has come to stay because of its rich medicinal content. The active medicinal principle of apple is pectin, natural therapeutic ingredient found in the inner portion of the rind and the pulp Pectin aids in detoxification by supplying the galacturonic acid needed for the elimination to prevent decomposition in the alimentary canal. The malice acid contained in the apple is beneficial to the bowels, liver and brain.
Apples, being rich in iron, arsenic and phosphorus, are highly beneficial in the treatment of anemia. It will be particularly useful in the form of freshly prepared apple juice.
Apples are beneficial in the treatment of both constipation and diarrhea. Raw apples are good for constipation and diarrhea. The cooking process softens the cellulose and provides bulk to the faces. Apples have been found useful in acute and chronic dysentery among children.
The all-natural medicinal substance, pectin, in the mashed apple works to create a protective coating action by virtue of its qualities as an absorbent and demulcent i.e. the soothing agent.
Apples are considered invaluable in the cases of high blood pressure. The apple diet has a rapid and considerable diuretic effect causing increased secretion of urine and thus bringing down blood pressure to normal. It also relieves the kidneys by reducing the supply of sodium chloride to a minimum. In addition, it lowers the sodium level in the tissues because of the high level of potassium in apples.
Apples are regarded as an excellent food medicine for gout, arthritis and rheumatism, especially when these diseases are caused by uric acid poisoning.
Apples are useful in kidneys stones. In countries where the natural unsweetened cider is the common beverage, cases of stone or calculus are practically absent. The ripe fresh fruit will be more valuable. The acid of the apple also exerts an antiseptic influence upon the germs present in the mouth and teeth when it is thoroughly chewed. Apples are thus regarded as a natural preserver of the teeth and should be taken in any tooth troubles.
The apple is the best fruit to tone up a weak and run-down condition. It removes all deficiencies of vital organs and makes the body stout and strong. It tones up the body and the brain as it contains more phosphorus and iron than any other fruit or vegetable. Its regular consumption with milk promotes health and youthfulness and helps build healthy and bright skin. It has a calming and relaxing effect and is good especially for sedentary workers.
Use Apples in Home Remedies
• Apples make extremely good home remedies.
• Apples juice taken half an hour before meals and just before retiring to bed is good for anemia.
• Ripe and sweet apples crushed into pulp and given to the child several times a day, cures acute and chronic dysentery.
• Shredded apple, mixed with a tablespoonful of honey and sprinkled with sesame seeds, constitute an excellent stomach tonic and an appetizer.
• A ripe skinned apple taken with a little salt every morning on empty stomach relieves chronic headache.
• Apples, boiled to a jelly, make a very good liniment for rheumatic pains.
• About 250 grams of sweet apples taken daily for about a week gives relief from dry hacking cough.
• The apple peel water is an excellent medicine for the inflamed eyes both as a beverage and as an eye wash.
• The over-ripe apples are useful as a poultice for sore eyes.
*Values per 100 gms edible portion
Minerals and Vitamins
Small amounts of Vitamins E, H and B Complex
Calorific value - 59
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