Two Apples Per Day May Help Improve Cholesterol Levels
Hypercholesterolemia, also called high cholesterol, is the presence of high levels of cholesterol in the blood. It is a major risk factor for cardiovascular disease. A new study suggests that consuming two apples per day may help improve cholesterol levels, possibly due to their high polyphenol levels.
Forty mildly hypercholesterolemic adults with an average age of 51 participated in the study. They consumed 2 Renetta Canada apples or an apple control beverage for 8 weeks. After a 4-week washout period, they switched interventions.
Fasting blood samples were taken at baseline and following each intervention. The researchers used the blood samples to measure serum lipids, glucose, insulin, endothelial, and inflammation markers. They also measured microvascular reactivity and arterial stiffness.
Apple consumption resulted in a decrease in total cholesterol, LDL cholesterol, and triacylglycerol levels, compared to the control beverage. In addition, microvascular dilation was increased as a result of apple consumption compared to the control beverage. Vasodilation is the widening of the blood vessels, which increases blood flow through the blood vessels and lowers blood pressure.
Apple consumption did not affect HDL cholesterol, glucose, insulin, or blood pressure
The study was conducted by researchers from the University of Reading. It was published on December 16, 2019 in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition.