Food & Nutrition

Apricot: Facts on Health Benefits and Nutritional Value

Apricot is a summer fruit par excellence; it is known for its benefits to the skin. Good for athletes and pregnant women, it has a variety of unsuspected virtues!

Apricot Benefits: A security contribution of provitamin A

Apricot represents a remarkable source of provitamin A (or carotene), which transformed the body into vitamin A. The vitamin needed for growth, the good condition of the skin and mucous membranes, and the vision twilight. It has detoxifying properties and antioxidants recognized and play an effective role in protecting against cancer and cellular aging. It also increases the resistance to infections. Its action is so valuable and diverse. The apricot is a fruit quite interesting for the cover of this vitamin need: 100 g (2 small apricots) provide 1.5 to 3 mg of provitamin A, which practically corresponds to 50% of the recommended intake for an adult. Note that pregnancy, taking birth control pills, smoking increases the need for vitamin A and provitamin A. In all these cases, the apricot consumption is particularly useful.

Apricot benefits

Several prospective epidemiological studies have shown that high consumption of fruit and vegetables decreased the risk of cardiovascular disease, certain cancers, and other chronic diseases. The presence of antioxidants in fruits and vegetables may play a role in these protective effects. The apricot is a source of fiber. In addition, to prevent constipation and reduce the risk of colon cancer, a diet high in fiber may help prevent cardiovascular disease, as well as control of type 2 diabetes and appetite.

Very few studies have examined the specific effects of apricot on health. According to a study, daily consumption of 3 Japanese apricots dried or pickled (like umeboshi) could reduce the severity of chronic gastritis. Chronic gastritis is an inflammation of the stomach wall, caused by the presence of infection by the bacterium Helicobacter pylori. The Japanese apricot decreases the inflammatory effects of the H. pylori bacteria in the stomach. Chronic inflammation of the stomach may, in some people, generate stomach cancer. However, other studies needed to confirm whether the consumption of Japanese apricot may decrease this risk.

Apricot main ingredients

Antioxidants: Apricots contain different antioxidants, especially phenolic compounds from the family of flavonoids. These compounds help to neutralize free radicals from the body and thus prevent the onset of cardiovascular disease, certain cancers, and various chronic diseases. The antioxidant content of dried apricots would be higher than the fresh apricots. Purees, jams, and juice (nectar) apricots contain substantially the same antioxidant compounds, but in smaller quantities than in fresh apricots.

Apricot and fat, a winning combination

Carotenoids, including beta-carotene, are better absorbed when a small amount of the body fat is consumed even moment. It is, therefore, appropriate to use, for example, dried apricots with a few nuts or apricot juice with a piece of cheese. Apricots also contain carotenoids mainly beta-carotene, a carotenoid contributing largely to its orange color, and a small amount of lycopene. In the body, beta-carotene has the ability to transformed into vitamin A. Generally, the total carotenoid content of the peel apricots is 2 to 3 times higher than that of the reversed. Even if, for an equivalent portion, fresh apricot contains 2 times less beta carotene than carrots (one of the best sources), it remains a very interesting source. Dried apricots contain it a little less.

Fibers. Apricots, fresh and dried, are a source of dietary fiber. A serving of ½ cup (125 mL) fresh apricots fill respectively 5% and 8% of the recommended daily fiber intake of men and women aged 19 to 50 years. As for the dried apricots, a portion of ¼ cup (60 ml) packed 8% and 12% of these contributions.

Apricot Benefits


Apricot Benefits: Vitamins and key minerals

  • Vitamin A

The apricot fresh and dried apricots are good sources of vitamin A.

  • Iron

The dried apricot is a good source of iron for humans and a source for women. The apricot is a fresh source of iron for humans.

  • Copper

The dried apricot is a good source of copper. The apricot is a fresh source of copper.

  • Vitamin B3 (niacin)

The dried apricot is a source of vitamin B3.

  • Vitamin B5 (pantothenic acid)

The dried apricot is a source of vitamin B5.

  • Vitamin C

The apricot is a fresh source of vitamin C.

  • Vitamin K

The dried apricot is a source of vitamin K for women.

  • Magnesium

The dried apricot is a source of magnesium for women.

  • Phosphorus

The dried apricot is a source of phosphorus.

  • Potassium

The fresh apricot and dried apricot are sources of potassium.

Apricot Benefits


More sweet, dried apricots?

The amount of sugar contained in a dried apricot is the same as in a fresh apricot. But as with any dried fruit, sugar is more concentrated. Fruit dehydration process reduces their moisture content, thus focusing their sugar content, but also in various nutrients, including vitamins and minerals. This makes apricots and other dried fruits interesting foods nutritionally.

Apricot fake products

Several products based on apricot, such as jam and juice (nectar), are popular with consumers. To reduce the generation costs of these products, some food companies sometimes substitute mashed apple gold citrus with an amount of apricot. Although they are banned, the practice Often goes unnoticed because of the taste, texture, or color of the final product that’s not modified.

Apricot Benefits: sulfites

Sulfites are one of the nine most common food allergens. Their use can cause serious reactions in people who are allergic. Sulfites are naturally occurring compounds in foods and in the body, but they are also found in the form of food additives. used as preservatives.

Dried apricots and products containing apricot-like jam –  a source of sulfites. It is therefore important for people allergic to sulfites to read labels to avoid eating foods that contain them. While regulation is strict about it, occasionally found undeclared sulfites in certain products – among others based apricot.

It is therefore important to doubly vigilant when consuming such products. Dried apricots without sulfites are now available on the market. They are a good alternative for people who should avoid the consumption of this food additive.

Apricot Benefits: A very good mineral recharging

With apricot, it has a very important contribution of potassium 315 mg per 100 g (the minimum requirement estimated at 500mg/100g, and the average normal consumption to 2 or 3 mg). Also significant, the supply of iron (0.4 mg/100g; RDA * 10-18mg), copper (0.12 mg/100g; RDA * 2.5 mg), magnesium (11mg / 100g * RDA 330-420mg). All these minerals preferred among those with high muscle activity, especially sports. The apricot (fresh or dried, for that matter) is a fruit for them very well suited to their needs. It contributes to the mineral recharge before the competition (charging all the more necessary that the effort is intense, prolonged, and it’s hot); it fits usefully recovery ration (that’s rich in potassium, for proper elimination of toxins fatigue).

Apricot Benefits: Excellent digestibility

When consumed “ready to eat”, the apricot is a delicious and perfectly digestible fruit. Assimilation favored by his tender and soft consistency, and it’s a slightly tart flavor that stimulates gastric secretions. Its fibers, very well tolerated, are beneficial to intestinal function (pectins, abundant, have regulatory virtues of transit: they help to fight against intestinal laziness and are well supported even sensitive intestines). The apricot is also part of the first fruits that can be used for babies: first poached and finely happened and then simply crushed (and optionally mixed with a Swiss breakfast or cottage cheese).

Choice and conservation

To choose

Apricots should be yellow or orange, soft to the touch, fragrant and smooth skin, signs of maturity. If necessary, you can ripen apricots by putting them in a paper bag at room temperature for 1 day or 2. Avoid green fruit because they will not ripen. The fruits of the best varieties of apricots are rarely found fresh outside their area of production. Indeed, they hold out against numerous manipulations required during storage and transport distance. Canned fruits or dried thus are often more flavorful because they are harvested at full maturity, and they come from more tasty varieties. There is also virgin apricot oil, which is used mostly for facials, in food stores.

Conservation

If they are willing to eat at the time of purchase, apricots and do not keep more than 2 or 3 days at room temperature.

  • Fridge: The refrigerator can keep one week in a perforated plastic bag, but it changes its texture and flavor. Get them some time before serving.
  • Freezer: Cut them in half along the groove, remove the core and place the halves on a baking sheet, and freeze. Put them in plastic bags and put them in the freezer.

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