An apple a day is reportedly meant to keep the doctor away, but new research from Washington State University shows the humble apple may hold the key to combating obesity. Granny Smith apples specifically were shown to have more of the non-digestible compounds that could help keep guys lean.
We have always known that a diet rich in fresh fruits and vegetables is good for us. Not only do they provide essential vitamins and minerals, they also help assist men in getting their necessary 38g of fiber per day. The study included many variety of apple, including Braeburn, Fuji, Golden Delicious, Red Delicious, McIntosh, Gala and Granny Smith. It appears that the non-digestible fiber and polyphenols in the apple don’t get broken down during chewing and digestion, but instead travel intact straight to the gut, where they help promote friendly bacteria. This change in the balance of bacteria can actually help those with bowel and related disorders due to the anti-inflammatory effects of the polyphenols. This could be great news for men with colitis, Crohns disease and other inflammatory diseases of the colon.
How does this help combat obesity? What researchers observed is that the apples actually changed the proportions of bacteria in the fecal matter, in obese mice post apple consumption the fecal matter resembled that of lean mice. This difference was more so in those mice fed Granny Smiths over the other varieties of apple. The balance of colon bacteria has long had an association of being able to disrupt metabolism, and an upset in the bacteria can make people not feel full and lead to obesity. So apples work against obesity on multiple levels, by providing fiber and healthy gut bacteria and making us feel fuller for longer.
Another benefit of apples, beside the taste, is research done in 2012 by the Orchanomizu University that shows a marked improvement in visceral fat in study participants that took polyphenols from apples. The same study also showed improvements in cholesterol, with decrease total and LDL cholesterol levels. So even if you were happy with your weight, for those with high cholesterol a natural alternative to statins might be to increase apple consumption. Unlike medications apples have no adverse side effects.
At around 75 calories and 4 grams of fiber, apples are definitely worth a place on every guy’s diet plan. Not just to help combat obesity, but also help keep the colon bacteria happy. While an apple a day cannot be guaranteed to keep the doctor away, it will certainly help not only metabolism but cholesterol and fat levels.