Healthy fruits and vegetables have long been encouraged as staples in a healthy diet, but what if there were something you could eat that may protect you from breast cancer?

There is a fruit that may actually do this.High in antioxidants and rich in phytochemicals, this fruit that is also good tasting has perks that are long lasting. It’s easily found and you can get them at generally any supermarket or even farmers market. It’s inexpensive and appeals to adults and children alike.  What is this fruit that has so many potential benefits? It is the apple!

fruitsvegetables Researchers have found that not only area apples good for the diet and for fueling the body, but "phytochemicals inhibit a key inflammation pathway (NFkB) in human breast cancer cells," according to Ruihai Liu, PhD, MD, MS, and associate professor of food science at New York’s Cornell University.  also has many more benefits because it contains over 80% water, which helps dieters feel full and satisfied, thus reducing the amounts of other foods they eat. It’s important to consume the whole fruit including the peel because many nutrients are located in the peel.  So many benefits in fact, that Olympic athletes snack on the peels, and may also eat them in the form of dried powder prior to their Olympic competitions.

Nutritionists and physicians have always encouraged lots of fresh fruits and vegetables in  one’s diet, but it is the unique ability of apples to inhibit the inflammation pathway in breast cancer cells that makes apples particularly beneficial. Studies in rats showed that increases in apple extracts fed to rats provided rapid decreases in breast cancer tumor growth.

Apples, because of their low glycemic index of around 40, can be important components of a healthy fuel for exercise, because they contain both fiber and the carbohydrates in apples are slowly absorbed.  Vitamin C along with antioxidants poly phenols, flavenoids, are also found in apples and can help boost immune system function. One other particularly interesting antioxidant called quercetin, is contained in apples and is another substance that researchers find beneficial for it’s anti-inflammatory properties. Since many diseases including cancer may have inflammatory components, reducing inflammation can be beneficial to all of us.

Because apples and their peels are so beneficial, it may be a good idea for you to purchase organic apples rather than non-organic ones because apples are one of the fruits that could contain the highest levels of pesticides when conventionally grown. But add apples into your diet and encourage your children to snack on this amazing fruit that packs a powerful health  punch.