3 Superpowers of Apples Protect Vessels, Tame Appetite, Banish Constipation
3 Superpowers of Apples Protect Vessels, Tame Appetite, Banish Constipation

By Naiwen Hu

“An apple a day keeps the doctor away” has some truth to it. Studies have proved that apples can help prevent cancer, protect blood vessels, control appetite, and relieve constipation. Learn what apples do for you, how to prepare them, and what to be wary of.

According to a JAMA survey report with 8,728 adults, a small percentage of U.S. adults who ate an apple a day used fewer prescription drugs. The benefits of eating apples are attributed to their fiber, essential vitamins and minerals, and flavonoids (particularly quercetin), a group of molecular compounds thought to help prevent cancer and other health conditions.

Based on a Food Science & Nutrition review published in June 2023, apples and apple products protect against cardiovascular disease, cancer, and mild cognitive impairment. They can also help promote hair growth, heal burn wounds, improve the oral environment, prevent niacin-induced skin flushing, reduce UV-induced skin hyperpigmentation, and improve symptoms of atopic dermatitis and cedar hay fever.

These benefits are related to various mechanisms, such as protection of the vascular endothelium, hypolipidemic, anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, anti-apoptotic, anti-invasive, and anti-metastatic effects.

3 Benefits of Apples

Apples have many benefits, the most prominent of which are the following three:

  1. Protect blood vessels and prevent cancer: In traditional Chinese medicine (TCM), apples are the fruit of the heart. The quercetin in apples can lower bad cholesterol and keep blood vessels flexible. Quercetin can also enhance the body’s immunity against cancer and cardiovascular diseases.
  2. Suppress appetite and promote weight loss: Apples are rich in dietary fiber and polyphenols. These ingredients, which cannot be digested in the mouth or stomach, will go to the colon before they begin to ferment and be digested. The number of probiotics in the intestines will increase, adjusting the balance of intestinal flora and reducing appetite. Apples are a good choice if you are trying to control your weight.
  3. Relieve constipation and maintain complexion: Apples are rich in water-soluble dietary fiber, which can absorb water. The water-soluble dietary fiber in the apple peel is more than double that of the pulp, which can promote gastrointestinal peristalsis, relieve constipation, and give you a rosier complexion.

Apple Recipes

Whether it is a cold winter or a hot summer, apple soup or apple tea are great additions to your diet. Below are two simple apple soups:

Apple Red Date Soup

Ingredients: 1 apple, 20 grams of wolfberries, 3 red dates, 1,200 milliliters of water.


  1. Wash and slice the apple. Remove the core of the red dates.
  2. Pour water into a pot and bring to a boil. Then, add red dates and simmer on low heat for 5 minutes.
  3. Pour in the apple slices and wolfberries. Cook for another 3 minutes. Those who like it sweet can add a little bit of rock sugar.

Apple red date soup regulates the stomach and intestines and lowers cholesterol. Red dates tonify blood and qi, while wolfberries tonify the liver and kidney and protect the eyes. Adding a few slices of ginger will help keep you warm in winter.

Apple Black Tea Drink

Ingredients: 1 large apple, 2 black tea bags, 1,000 milliliters of water.


  1. Cut the apple into small pieces.
  2. Pour water into a pot and bring it to a boil. Add the apple pieces to the water and boil them together.
  3. Reduce the heat and cook slowly for 20 minutes.
  4. Turn off the heat. Put in the tea bag and let it stand for 2 minutes. Take the tea bag out, and it’s ready to drink.

Should I Peel the Apple?

It’s a pity to throw away the skin when eating apples since it’s more nutritious to eat apples with the skin on. The skin contains more vitamin C than the flesh, which can help prevent skin aging. The polyphenol content in the peel is six times that of the flesh. For those with dry eyes, eating apples can help improve eye fatigue.

If you are worried about pesticide residues and fruit wax on the skin, choose certified organic apples and scrub them under warm water or brush them with a soft brush. In addition, pesticide residue can be found on the stems and eyes (where the blossom was) of apples, so it’s better to cut them off. If older people or others cannot easily bite into an apple, cut it into slices.

Medicinal Uses of Apples

Other than being delicious, apples also have an anti-diarrhea function.

According to the TCM reference “Dietetic Materia Medica,” apples can cure diarrhea due to their pectin content. For those with diarrhea, eating apples can protect their intestinal walls and absorb excess water in the intestines, which helps to shape the stools and reduce diarrhea.

One practical recipe for diarrhea:

  1. Wash the apple.
  2. Cut it into small slices, leaving the skin on.
  3. Put it in a bowl of water and steam it for 5 minutes.
  4. Take it out of the pot and wait for the temperature to drop to lukewarm before serving. When feeding infants, using only the concentrated juice will suffice.

2 Things to Note When Eating Apples

Although apples are tasty, they are not suitable for everyone. In addition, overeating will bring side effects. Below are two points to note:

  • Two groups should avoid drinking juice: Those with kidney disease and diabetes should eat the fruit instead of drinking the juice since juice may contain too much sugar, which is bad for blood sugar and kidneys.
  • Don’t eat too many: Eating too many can make people drowsy and block the meridians, the energy channels running throughout the body. However, people having trouble falling asleep may want to eat some to help them doze off. Stick to eating one apple a day.

How to Choose Apples

The following are three steps for choosing fresh and sweet apples:

  1. Smell it: Ripe apples will emit a fragrance. Apples with a heavier aroma should be eaten as soon as possible after purchase. Apples with a too-strong or fermented smell are overripe and should be avoided.
  2. Check the color: It’s not that the redder the apples are, the better. For example, for Fuji apples and Red Delicious apples, we need to check whether there are small dots on their skin and whether they are red or yellow. Apples with obvious specks are usually sweeter and taste better, while those with dark red spots are usually not fresh enough.
  3. Check the eye: When choosing apples, we should also look at the eye, at the bottom of the apple where the blossom used to be. The larger and deeper the bottom depression, the riper and sweeter the apple is. Apples with deeper bottoms usually have smaller cores and more flesh.

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