Almost everyone who goes grocery shopping has seen a slew of antioxidant products spring up on the shelves over the past few years. Ten years ago, most people had never even heard of an “antioxidant”, but according to a recent report, “29 percent of U.S. adults are seeking out high-antioxidant groceries”. What’s more, this number is expected to climb even higher over the next ten years, as consumers gain further knowledge of the numerous potential health benefits of antioxidants, such as anti-cancer and immunity-boosting properties.
While plenty of cereals, breads, nutritional supplements and even beauty care products now emphasize antioxidant content on their labels, many shoppers miss that fruits and vegetables naturally have some of the highest antioxidant levels of all foods. The top 20 list of the foods with the highest antioxidant capacity from the USDA is a must read. What’s more, three different apple varieties made the list!
Delicious and healthy – you couldn’t ask for much more in an apple, right? Well, there’s even more. If you’ve had a chance to read about the science behind our nonbrowning Arctic® apples, you know that we use gene silencing to turn down expression of the enzyme polyphenol oxidase (PPO), virtually eliminating Arctic® apples’ PPO production so the fruit doesn’t brown when bitten, cut or bruised. In a conventional apple, PPO mixes with polyphenols, burning them both up in the process. With Arctic® apples, this reaction is avoided, leaving intact the apple’s natural polyphenols, the most abundant antioxidants in the diet!
As we always say: Keep in mind that, as our doctors and dietitians will tell us, we should take any new health news with a grain of salt and an eye on the big picture. Research about antioxidants and their potential health benefits in an actual human body is still very young. Until a food’s health benefits are unequivocally proven in well-designed human feeding studies, we’re just guessing about what works. In the meantime, the prudent course is to eat a healthy, varied diet and exercise regularly. Of course, we hope you’ll include lots of apples in that diet!