by Elizabeth Renter
June 7th, 2013
Including more fruit and vegetables in your diet is often one of the first steps towards lasting weight loss and disease prevention. But, this isn’t only because these lower-calorie, natural foods are often taking the place of unhealthy, processed ones. It’s because they contain a wealth of antioxidants and beneficial compounds that have numerous health benefits. One particular fruit – apples – can be especially helpful in losing weight and even preventing diabetes.
Researchers with the University of Iowa recently conducted a study on apples, fully expecting to find they had beneficial effects on obesity risk. But, they found other benefits as well.
Apples have a substance known as ursolic acid within their peels. Researchers know that ursolic acid had positive effects on increasing muscle mass and strength in mice. But, they hadn’t realized just how far-reaching these benefits were.
The results of their study were published last year in the journal PLoS ONE. They believed the substance would be useful in treating muscle wasting diseases, but they found it may have even more beneficial uses.
The researchers found that not only did ursolic acid convert calories into muscle but also into brown fat. Contrary to popular opinion, not all fat is bad—brown fat is actually a valuable asset in the battle against obesity and has been shown to both absorb and burn glucose (sugar) in the blood—important to diabetics whose bodies have difficulty regulating blood sugar.
Continue reading at Eat Apples to Reduce Obesity and Diabetes Risk, Studies Say.