Eating an apple a day without removing the peel definitely keeps disease at bay. Canadian scientists have found that the fruit is more effective than other "superfoods" including green tea and blueberries as a source of antioxidants and chemical compounds called flavonoids that combat potentially life-threatening conditions.
Previous research has found that ursolic acid from apple peels can help to fight growing waistlines by increasing calories burned. The natural substance found in apple peel can partially protect mice from obesity and some of its harmful effects.
Scientists also found that apples significantly lowered blood fat levelsin postmenopausal women, the group most at risk of heart attacks and strokes.
In the latest study, researchers from Nova Scotia Agricultural College tested the peel and the fleshy fruit of apples separately.
The peel was found to be up to six times more effective in inhibiting an enzyme called ACE, which is known to cause hypertension and high blood pressure, according to the team's results in the journal Food Chemistry.
"Apples are one of the most popular and frequently consumed fruits in the world," the Daily Express quoted the researchers as stating.
"Apple peel is a rich source of flavonoids which provide numerous health benefits - apple peel flavonoids inhibited the enzyme ACE," they added.
One word of caution is to always try to eat apples from organic sources. Since the pesticide load is high for conventionally grown apples, this may reduce overall flavonoid content in the peel.
Marco Torres is a research specialist, writer and consumer advocate for healthy lifestyles. He holds degrees in Public Health and Environmental Science and is a professional speaker on topics such as disease prevention, environmental toxins and health policy.
This first appeared in Prevent Disease