Tallahassee, Apples became a favorite food for people who are running the program because the content of water and dietary fiber in apples can suppress appetite. Not only that, eating an apple every day can also keep you from heart disease.
Recent research conducted in Tallahassee Florida State University found that eating an apple every day good for blood vessels or cardiovascular health.
Researchers noted that women who eat apples every day for a year can reduce total cholesterol by 14 percent and levels of bad cholesterol (LDL or Low Density Lipoprotein) by 23 percent.
“I never expected that consumption of apples can reduce bad cholesterol while increasing good cholesterol HDL (High Density Lipoprotein) is about 4 percent,” said Bahram Arjmandi, Chairman, Department of Nutrition, Food and Exercise Sciences at Florida State University in Tallahassee, as reported by HealthDay, Wednesday (13/04/2011).
In this latest study, researchers wanted to assess the long-term effects of apple consumption on heart health.
Researchers recruited 160 women between the ages of 45 to 65 years. The women were randomized into one of two dietary intervention groups. One group was given 75 grams of dried apple every day for a year, while the other group were given dried plums each day for a year.
According to this study, daily dry apple contains about 240 calories and an apple contains about 5 grams of fiber, according to U.S. Department of Agriculture.
Researchers found that women who ate dried apples can lower total cholesterol by 14 percent. LDL cholesterol fell 23 percent. Daily apple consumption were also significantly lower levels of C-reactive protein and lipid hydroperoxide, two ingredients that may indicate an increased risk of heart disease. However, whether plum effect on cholesterol levels is not mentioned in the study abstract.
“Apple really is a remarkable fruit for various reasons. The biggest reason is the fiber apple, apples have soluble and insoluble fiber. Insoluble fibers found in skin, while the fruit flesh contains soluble fiber,” said Jessica Shapiro, a clinical nutritionist at Montefiore Medical Center in New York City.
According to Shapiro, the apple flesh-like substance would be highly viscous gel that can take cholesterol and pull it out of the body.
“One good thing is the pectin in apples. This is a material used to make jelly or jam, and pectin contributes to the viscosity of what happened through the body, and help remove it. Apples also have a lot of antioxidants and other natural components,” he said.
Shapiro said he would recommend a fresh apple ketimbang dried apples, because some nutrients may be lost in the drying process.
According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, food can have an effect on cholesterol levels. Foods that contain saturated fat, trans fat and cholesterol can raise levels of cholesterol, while foods with healthy fats like olive oil can lower your cholesterol.
Foods with fiber, like fruits, vegetables and grains, can lower cholesterol levels, while low-fiber carbohydrates tend to raise levels of triglycerides and lower HDL cholesterol as good cholesterol.
The results of this study was presented at the Experimental Biology meeting in Washington DC on Tuesday.