5 healthy reasons to eat stone fruit

Peaches, nectarines, apricots and plums are great for your health. Here's why a piece of stone fruit makes a healthy and delicious snack

5 healthy reasons to eat stone fruit

Source: Best Health Magazine, September 2009

Tasty stone fruit’so-called because of the stone-like seed inside’make perfect snacks, as they tuck easily into lunch bags or picnic baskets. Here’s what they can do for your health:

Create collagen

A cup (250 mL) of sliced apricots or plums has about one quarter of your daily vitamin C needs. Vitamin C helps the body form collagen’the main protein in connective tissue’in bones, cartilage, muscle and blood vessels. It also helps to increase iron absorption.

Care for your nerves and your muscles

Bored with bananas but want to get enough potassium (key for proper nerve and muscle function)? Two small peaches have slightly more of this essential mineral than a medium banana.

Sharpen eyesight

Apricots are delicious raw, but their carotenoids’antioxidants that give the flesh its vibrant orange colour’become more available to the body when cooked. Beta-carotene, for one, converts to vitamin A to help maintain eyesight, skin membranes and immune function.

Strengthen bones

Two plums contain about one tenth of your daily vitamin K, which helps maintain strong bones. Researchers have found that low levels of vitamin K are associated with an increased incidence of osteoarthritis in hands and knees.

Stay regular

Cut up a peach on your cereal and have a nectarine as a snack. But don’t peel them! The skin provides insoluble fibre that helps prevent constipation.

This article was originally titled “Fresh & Juicy,” in the Sepember 2009 issue of Best Health. Subscribe today to get the full Best Health experience’and never miss an issue!’and make sure to check out what’s new in the latest issue of Best Health.

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