By Katey Davidson, MScFN
Apricots (Prunus armeniaca) are stone fruits also called Armenian plums.
Round and yellow, they appear to be a smaller model of a peach however share the tartness of purple plums.
They’re extraordinarily nutritious and have many health advantages, reminiscent of improved digestion and eye health.
Here are 9 health and nutrition advantages of apricots.
1. Very Nutritious and Low in Calories
Apricots are very nutritious and include many important nutritional vitamins and minerals.
Just 2 recent apricots (70 grams) present (1):
- Calories: 34
- Carbs: eight grams
- Protein: 1 gram
- Fat: zero.27 grams
- Fiber: 1.5 grams
- Vitamin A: eight% of the Daily Value (DV)
- Vitamin C: eight% of the DV
- Vitamin E: four% of the DV
- Potassium: four% of the DV
Furthermore, this fruit is an honest supply of beta carotene, lutein, and zeaxanthin, all of that are potent antioxidants that assist battle free radicals in your physique (2Trusted Source, 3Trusted Source, 4Trusted Source).
It’s greatest to take pleasure in apricots entire and unpeeled, because the pores and skin boasts giant quantities of fiber and vitamins. Be positive to discard the stone, because it’s inedible.
Apricots are low in energy and fats whereas additionally a superb supply of nutritional vitamins A and C.
2. High in Antioxidants
Apricots are an incredible supply of many antioxidants, together with beta carotene and nutritional vitamins A, C, and E.
What’s extra, they’re excessive in a gaggle of polyphenol antioxidants referred to as flavonoids, which have been proven to guard towards sicknesses, together with diabetes and coronary heart illness (5, 6Trusted Source, 7Trusted Source).
The important flavonoids in apricots are chlorogenic acids, catechins, and quercetin (5).
These compounds work to neutralize free radicals, that are dangerous compounds that injury your cells and trigger oxidative stress. Oxidative stress is linked to weight problems and many continual illnesses, akin to coronary heart illness (8Trusted Source, 9Trusted Source, 10Trusted Source).
In one research in 2,375 individuals, researchers developed a scoring system to measure modifications in ranges of inflammatory markers.
They discovered that prime flavonoid and anthocyanin intakes have been related to a 42% and 73% lower inflammation score, respectively. High flavonoid consumption was additionally tied to a 56% decrease oxidative stress rating (11Trusted Source).
Apricots include quite a few antioxidants, most notably flavonoids. They assist shield your physique from oxidative stress, which is linked to many persistent illnesses.
three. May Promote Eye Health
Vitamin A performs an important position in stopping night time blindness, a dysfunction brought on by lack of mild pigments in your eyes, whereas vitamin E is a fat-soluble antioxidant that enters your eyes instantly to guard them from free radical injury (12Trusted Source, 13Trusted Source).
Meanwhile, beta carotene — which provides apricots their yellow-orange shade — serves as a precursor to vitamin A, which means that your physique can convert it into this vitamin (14Trusted Source).
Apricots are a superb supply of beta carotene, lutein, zeaxanthin, and nutritional vitamins C and E. These vitamins shield your eyes towards injury.
four. May Boost Skin Health
Eating apricots might benefit your skin.
What’s extra, analysis signifies a direct link between ultraviolet (UV) mild publicity, sunburns, and your danger of melanoma, a lethal type of pores and skin cancer (17Trusted Source, 18Trusted Source).
Notably, you’ll be able to struggle some of this pores and skin injury by way of a healthy food plan full of antioxidants, which apricots present.
Vitamins C and E, each discovered on this fruit, might assist your pores and skin. In specific, vitamin C protects towards UV injury and environmental pollution by neutralizing free radicals (19Trusted Source).
Furthermore, this vitamin helps construct collagen, which provides your pores and skin power and elasticity. Eating a food plan excessive in vitamin C will help your pores and skin heal from UV injury and forestall wrinkles (19Trusted Source).
Beta carotene, one other apricot nutrient, might shield towards sunburns. In a 10-week research, supplementing with beta carotene lowered sunburn danger by 20% (20Trusted Source).
While you must nonetheless use sunscreen, munching on apricots might supply further safety.
Apricots are naturally excessive in antioxidants, which guard towards environmental injury from daylight, air pollution, and cigarette smoke. These compounds might profit your pores and skin by decreasing your danger of wrinkles and sunburn.
5. May Promote Gut Health
Apricots might promote intestine health.
One cup (165 grams) of sliced apricots supplies three.three grams of fiber, which is eight.6% and 13.2% of the DV for males and ladies, respectively (1).
Apricots include each soluble and insoluble fiber. The soluble sort dissolves in water and consists of pectin, gums, and lengthy chains of sugar referred to as polysaccharides, whereas the insoluble sort does not dissolve in water and consists of cellulose, hemicellulose, and lignin (21Trusted Source).
Furthermore, fiber delays the motion of food by way of your digestive tract and feeds your beneficial gut bacteria. A more healthy intestine microbiome is linked to a decrease danger of weight problems (23Trusted Source).
While a single apricot (35 grams) holds solely zero.7 grams of fiber, it is easy to eat a couple of in a single sitting (1).
Apricots are an excellent supply of soluble fiber, which feeds your healthy intestine micro organism and might increase digestive health.
6. High in Potassium
Apricots are high in potassium, a mineral that additionally serves as an electrolyte. In your physique, it is chargeable for sending nerve alerts and regulating muscle contractions and fluid stability (24, 25Trusted Source).
Two apricots (70 grams) present 181 mg of this mineral, which is four% of the DV.
One evaluation of 33 research discovered that a weight-reduction plan wealthy in potassium considerably lowered blood strain and resulted in a 24% decrease danger of stroke (26Trusted Source).
Potassium aids nerve signaling, muscle contractions, and fluid stability. Eating potassium-rich meals, resembling apricots, might assist forestall hypertension and scale back your danger of stroke.
7. Very Hydrating
One cup (165 grams) of sliced, recent apricots offers virtually 2/three cup (142 ml) of water (1).
As most individuals do not drink sufficient water, consuming recent fruit may help you attain your every day wants.
If you are dehydrated, your blood quantity drops, forcing your coronary heart to work more durable to pump blood. Furthermore, staying hydrated permits your blood to flow into waste merchandise and vitamins all through your physique (27, 30Trusted Source).
What’s extra, consuming apricots could be a simple strategy to replenish each water and electrolyte loss after exercise, as this fruit provides good quantities of water and potassium (1, 27, 30Trusted Source).
Apricots are naturally excessive in water, which is essential for staying hydrated. Proper hydration is significant for a number of points of health, together with blood strain and coronary heart price.
eight. May Protect Your Liver
This analysis means that apricots might assist forestall liver injury as a result of of their naturally excessive antioxidant content material.
That stated, it is onerous to know whether or not this fruit offers the identical profit in people. More analysis is important.
In two rat research, apricots have been discovered to guard the liver from oxidative stress brought on by the ingestion of alcohol. Yet, human research are wanted.
9. Easy to Add to Your Diet
Both recent and dried apricots make for a fast, scrumptious snack or a simple addition to your favourite meal. You can add them to your weight-reduction plan in a spread of methods, together with:
- stirred into path combine or granola
- eaten recent as a snack
- sliced and added to yogurt or salad
- utilized in jams, preserves, and salsas
- stewed in a slow-cooker with meat, comparable to hen or beef
- added to desserts like pies, desserts, and pastries
As they’re candy and tart, apricots can be utilized as a alternative for peaches or plums in most recipes.
Both recent and dried apricots are extensively out there. You can eat them on their very own or add them to your favourite dishes, sides, or desserts.
The Bottom Line
Apricots are a scrumptious fruit full of nutritional vitamins, fiber, and antioxidants. They have a number of advantages, together with improved eye, pores and skin, and intestine health.
Fresh or dried, apricots are straightforward so as to add to yogurt, salads, and most important meals.
If you are used to consuming peaches and plums, apricots might be a good way to vary up your routine.
Reposted with permission from our media affiliate Healthline.
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