Apples are the new super fruit!

Articles
October 20, 2008

Apples are the new super fruit!

Retailers are always asking me what's the NEXT big trend, and in the produce department it is all about apples! Get ready as blueberries and pomegranates are challenged by what many consider the "old school fruit"; new research reports are pointing to the old standby to help ward off cancers, high blood pressure, heart disease...and even lose weight. And the reason that this fruit will be the next super fruit, is that is it inexpensive and is readily available. There are about 2,500 varieties of apples grown here in the United States, but most shoppers are familiar with just a few - and that opens up a huge opportunity for our supermarkets to expand their selections and sample, sample, sample. (My favorite by the way is the Fuji apple which I get whenever available at our local Sunday Farmers Market). Remember, that conventionally grown apples, according to the Environmental Working Group are the second only to peaches when it comes to pesticide residue - so be sure to wash them, my recommendation for consumers is to use an all natural pesticide wash like FIT, or purchase organic apples. All apples are rich in fiber and potassium, but the new research is showing a lot more benefits. The skin, or peel of the apple contains polyphenols which are cancer-fighting antioxidants which can help fight off colon cancer. Apples also contain quercetin, also found in onions, which is a flavonoid which has been proven to lower the risk of pancreatic cancer. And in April, scientists in France published findings that showed that consuming apples helped to prevent buildup of plaque in the arteries of animals.

Retailers are always asking me what's the NEXT big trend, and in the produce department it is all about apples! Get ready as blueberries and pomegranates are challenged by what many consider the "old school fruit"; new research reports are pointing to the old standby to help ward off cancers, high blood pressure, heart disease...and even lose weight. And the reason that this fruit will be the next super fruit, is that is it inexpensive and is readily available.

There are about 2,500 varieties of apples grown here in the United States, but most shoppers are familiar with just a few - and that opens up a huge opportunity for our supermarkets to expand their selections and sample, sample, sample. (My favorite by the way is the Fuji apple which I get whenever available at our local Sunday Farmers Market). Remember, that conventionally grown apples, according to the Environmental Working Group are the second only to peaches when it comes to pesticide residue - so be sure to wash them, my recommendation for consumers is to use an all natural pesticide wash like FIT, or purchase organic apples.

All apples are rich in fiber and potassium, but the new research is showing a lot more benefits. The skin, or peel of the apple contains polyphenols which are cancer-fighting antioxidants which can help fight off colon cancer. Apples also contain quercetin, also found in onions, which is a flavonoid which has been proven to lower the risk of pancreatic cancer. And in April, scientists in France published findings that showed that consuming apples helped to prevent buildup of plaque in the arteries of animals.

Quite possibly the one piece of research that may have the biggest impact on apple consumption is all about our waistlines. A nationwide research study found that those who ate apples on a regular basis were 21 percent less likely to have a large waist. The study also found that these apple lovers were 27 percent less likely to be diagnosed with metabolic syndrome; which consists of high blood pressure, high blood sugar, high triglycerides, low HDL cholesterol levels and excess belly fat.

So get out those bushel baskets and start enjoying! The fall season produces some of the best tasting apples you can bite into. Remember apple juice is not a replacement for the whole fruit, it typically contains less fiber and in many cases has added sweeteners; and if you do your research carefully you'll find that much of the apple juice concentrate that is used in packaged juices is actually produced in China. Think local and think whole fruit.