Health Benefits Apples - Nutrition Facts Apple Juice, Raw Fruit

There are many aspects to the health benefits of apples.

For example, apples are an excellent source of vitamins, minerals and dietary fiber and an excellent snack food for suppressing hunger pangs between meals.

A medium size apple (about 100 g) contains about 65 calories and has a moderately low calorie density, that is the number of calories per volume.

A medium apple supplies about 10% of your recommended daily requirements of vitamin C and about 1% of the requirements for Vitamin A, Calcium and Iron.

One raw apple with skin also provides about 12% of recommended daily allowance for Dietary Fiber.

This article compares the nutrition of apples with other fruits and compare the nutrients in fresh fruit with that of commercially available fruit juices.

The humble apple has a wonderful array of health benefits that many people don't know about. An 'Apple a Day' is a good motto.
The humble apple has a wonderful array of health benefits that many people don't know about. An 'Apple a Day' is a good motto. | Source

Interesting Facts about Apples

Apples are produced from a medium sized tree of Rosaceae family, sub-family pomoideae (Pome fruits).

The scientific name for apple species is Malus domestica.

Other Pome fruits related to apples are pears, nashi fruit and quince.

These fruits that have a "core" with several small seeds, surrounded by an edible layer of flesh protected by a tough outer membrane.

Apple trees are deciduous and have a dormant winter period that requires cold temperatures for the tree to properly break dormancy in spring.

The apple tree originated in the mountainous areas of Kazakhstan in Central Asia, and is now being grown in many parts of the world with a huge variety of types available.

The apple fruit is generally oval, round or pear-shaped and the outer skin has different colors ranging from green to yellow, pink to red depending on the type of cultivar.

Internally, the flesh of apples is generally cream, white or slightly off-white to cream in color and has mixture of mildly sweet and tart taste depending on the variety and ripeness.

The seeds are inedible because of their bitter taste and the core is also not eaten.

The skin has much of the dietary fiber that lost when apples are peeled or prepared for juice.

Several hundred varieties of apples grown worldwide either for eating raw, for juice, as a dessert fruit and or cooking a large variety of main dishes and for baking cakes and pies.

You can grow your own apples even if you do not have the room for and orchard using espalier method to train an apple tree to grow up a wall, planted in the ground of in a pot.

Nutrient Comparisons - Apples, Oranges and Pineapple

 
Apple
Orange
Pineapple
NUTRIENT
100g
100g
100g
Calories
52
47
50
Total Fat
0.17g
0.12g
0.12g
Saturated Fat
0.03g
0.01g
0.01g
Sodium
1 mg
0 mg
1 mg
Carbohydrate
13.8g
11.8g
13.1g
Dietary Fiber
2.4g
2.4g
1.4g
Sugar
10.4g
9.4g
9.9g
Protein
0.3g
0.9g
0.5g
 
Daily
Allowance
Percent
Vitamin A
1%
5%
1%
Calcium
1%
4%
1%
Vitamin C
8%
89%
80%
Iron
1%
1%
2%

Apple Nutrition Summary

NUTRIENT
Value for 100g raw apple
% Recom. Daily Allowance
Energy
50 Cal
2.50%
Carbohydrates
13.8 g
11%
Protein
0.26 g
0.50%
Total Fat
0.17 g
0.50%
Cholesterol
0 mg
0%
Dietary Fiber
2.40 g
6%
Vitamins
 
 
Folates
3 ug
1%
Niacin
0.09 mg
1%
Pantothenic acid
0.06 mg
1%
Pyridoxine
0.04 mg
3%
Riboflavin
0.03 mg
2%
Thiamin
0.02 mg
1%
Vitamin A
54 IU
2%
Vitamin C
4.6 mg
8%
Vitamin E
0.18 mg
1%
Vitamin K
2.2 ug
2%
Electrolytes
 
 
Sodium
1 mg
0%
Potassium
107 mg
2%
Minerals
 
 
Calcium
6 mg
0.60%
Iron
0.12 mg
1%
Magnesium
5 mg
1%
Phosphorus
11 mg
2%
Zinc
0.04 mg
0%
Phyto-nutrients
 
 
Carotene
27 ug
--
Crypto-xanthin
11 ug
--
Lutein-zeaxanthin
29 ug
--

Nutrient Comparisons

Apples have about the same number of calories as the same weight of oranges and pineapple (see the table opposite).

They are richer in dietary fiber but contain less protein and virtually no fat or cholesterol. Apples are rich in Vitamin C, but much less so than for oranges and pineapple.

They contain a similar amount of sugar to the other fruit.

Health Benefits of Raw Apples

  • Apple fruit contains substantial amounts of beta-carotene and Vitamin C which are powerful natural antioxidants. Consumption of vitamin C helps the body fight infections, maintains the immune system and helps reduce the level of harmful free radicals in the body.
  • Apples are rich in phyto-nutrients polyphenols and flavonoids, which have antioxidant properties. The total anti-oxidant strength (ORAC value) for about 100 g of raw apple is about 5900 Trolex Equivalents. The key flavonoids in apples are epicatechin, quercetin and procyanidin B2. Apples are also good source of natural tartaric acid that gives apples their tart flavor and has antioxidant benefits.
  • Apples eaten raw satisfy hunger for a relatively small number of calories and they are popular as a between meal snack for weight loss programs. Dried apples have also been shown to be beneficial for weight loss.
  • Eating an apple before an exercise session may boost your endurance. The antioxidant quercetin is thought to boost endurance by making oxygen more available to the lungs.

Raw Fruit and Juice Nutrient Comparisons

It is interesting to compare the nutrient in fresh fruit with that of an equivalent amount of fruit juice (see the Table below). The key points are:

  • The Calorie content is about the same, but the juices shown have no added sugar (check the nutrition labels)
  • Almost all of the dietary benefits of the fiber in fresh fruit is lost as the fiber is removed in the processing ( check the nutrition facts label on the juice container.
  • Most of the Beta Carotene is removed during processing
  • Vitamin C levels are higher in Apple, Orange and Grape juice because supplements are added.
  • There is some loss of potassium during processing

Friuit Juice Comparisons with Fresh Fruit

100 g fruit/juice
Apple
Apple Juice
Orange
Orange Juice
Pineapple
Pineapple Juice
Grape
Grape Juice
Energy (Cal)
56
40
44
35
43
44
68
53
Avail Carb (g)
12.8
10.1
9
8.2
8.2
10.3
15.5
13.4
Sugars (g)
12.4
10.1
9
7.9
8.2
10.3
15.5
13.4
Fibre (g)
2.2
-
2.1
0.1
1.8
-
2.4
-
Beta Carotene Eq (ug)
14
4
75
93
21
11
108
-
Vitamin C (mg)
6
45
50
49
17
12
5
24
Folate (ug)
-
4
n/a
40
n/a
8
-
2
Calcium (mg)
5
4
29
8
20
6
14
8
Potassium (mg)
106
84
170
156
151
143
221
85
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Uses of Apples

Apart from being one of the most convenient and very tasty fruits available, apples can be prepared in so many different ways and used in a variety of recipes. Apple crisp is an easy to prepare snack. Slice and apple with the skin left on, sprinkle with a little brown sugar and butter. Add some oats, raisins and nuts or some healthy musesli and bake at about 350 degrees F for about 20 minutes. This is a simple quick and nutritious snack. Apples are also a favorite for apple pie and many other desserts. Apple goes very well with pork and other meats, either as a sauce or a flavor enhancing ingredient. Babies love cooked apples and applesauce.

© 2012 Dr. John Anderson

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Comments 1 comment

carol7777 profile image

carol7777 4 years ago from Arizona

Always like the health benefits of good food. It kind makes you feel self righteous when you eat them. Thanks for sharing this hub.

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