Are apples citrus (+3 apple facts)?

Does eating an apple every day really keep the doctor away? Apples are certainly popular—ranking among the top three fruits produced around the world. They are easy to store and transport, and as a result, are typically available year-round in the U.S.

In this brief guide, we are going to answer “are apples citrus?” and discuss what are citrus fruits, do apples have citric acid, is apple juice a citrus juice, do apple seeds contain cyanide, and why should we eat apples.

Apples and Health

Apples are rich in quercetin and pectin, both of which are credited for supplying apples with their health benefits. Quercetin is a flavonoid, a type of naturally occurring plant chemical that has antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effects. Pectin is a type of soluble fiber that may help prevent constipation and have a modest effect on lowering LDL, the “bad” cholesterol. Pectin is also fermented by beneficial bacteria in the colon, which produces short chain fatty acids that may play a role in the prevention of chronic diseases, including certain cancers and bowel disorders. 

Fresh, whole apples offer the most nutrients. Discarding the skin removes much of the fiber and the majority of flavonoids. Dehydrating or drying the apples removes vitamin C, which is predominantly in the flesh. In addition, sugar (along with extra calories) is often added to dried apples. Clear apple juice undergoes filtering and pasteurization, which removes most of the flavonoids and fibers. 

Overall research shows a benefit when adding apples to the diet. The studies below looked at the health effects of apples in the diet over time, or examined the effects of specific phytochemicals in apples.

Animal studies have shown that plant chemicals, particularly in the apple peel, combined with pectin fiber can help to protect against free radical damage in the heart and blood vessels and have cholesterol-lowering effects. Human intervention studies using fresh apples, apple cider, or apple supplements show mixed results, showing no effect or other times lowering cholesterol. A review of five clinical trials noted the effects of fruits on cardiovascular diseases, and found an improvement in cardiovascular parameters (decreased triglycerides and LDL cholesterol) with intakes of whole fresh apples or dried apples, though not with apple juice.

Population studies on coronary heart disease and flavonoid intake, including quercetin from apples, also show mixed results:

A study of more than 66,000 women from the Nurses’ Health Study found that, when comparing the highest and lowest intakes of flavonoids, there was no difference in rates of heart attack or deaths from heart disease.A cohort study following almost 75,000 Swedish men and women for 10 years found a significant association: lower risk of stroke was seen in the group with the highest intakes of apples compared with the lowest intakes. 

The antioxidant effect of flavonoids in apples may protect cells from damage in the pancreas, an organ responsible for secreting insulin in response to extra sugar in the blood. An epidemiological study of more than 38,000 women in the Women’s Health Study followed for almost nine years supported a beneficial relation between apple intake and risk of type 2 diabetes. Those who ate one or more apples a day had a 28% lower risk of type 2 diabetes compared with those who ate none. Although the study established a link with apples in the diet, it did not show an association when examining specific flavonoids like quercetin.

Are apples citrus?

No, apples are fruits but not citrus. Apples belong to the Malus genus while citrus fruits are fruits coming from the Citrus genus of flowering trees and shrubs.

Apples have a sweet edible skin, a solid flesh without pulp and the core contains seeds. While citrus fruits have a juicy pulp and a leathery peel which is bitter in taste and no one likes to eat it.

Apples are members of the rose family and they are pomaceous fruits, meaning that they are accessory fruits (some part of the fruit is derived from the flower’s ovary and some part from the adjacent tissues exterior to the carpel).

The word “pome” is usually referred to an apple or apple- shaped object. Pome fruits have several small seeds in their core which is surrounded by an edible layer of flesh enclosed by a tough and edible skin.

What are citrus fruits?

Citrus fruits are easy to peel and consume the pulp along with white color part called pith, so they are considered as the fleshy fruits. Some common citrus fruits are oranges, lemons, limes, grapefruits, mandarins and pomelos and they come from the

Citrus fruits have a strong aroma and a pungent flavor because they are full of citric acid and high in Vit C (ascorbic acid).

Do apples have citric acid?

Apples have citric acid but only in small amounts. They are considered sub- acidic or low- acidic fruits. Some other low acidic fruits are mangoes, peaches, apricots, grapes, raisins and pears etc.

Is apple juice a citrus juice?

No, apple juice is not a citrus juice because apples are not citrus.

Do apple seeds contain cyanide?

No, and also yes, there is a chemical called amygdalin that is present in the apple seeds in a very minimum amount, and this chemical is converted into hydrogen cyanide inside our body. So, consuming a very large amount of apple seeds can be fatal.

Why should we eat apples?

Well, you have heard the proverb “an apple a day keeps the doctor away”. Apples give you about 52 kcal of energy and various nutrients such as:

  • Carbohydrates (sugars + dietary fibers), fats, proteins
  • Vitamins- including Vit A, C, E, K, B1, B2, B3, B5, B6, and Vit B9
  • Minerals- including calcium, magnesium, manganese, phosphorus, zinc, iron, sodium and potassium
  • Phytochemicals such as polyphenols
  • Apples help in preventing various diseases like Alzheimers, Parkinson’s disease, Asthma, type 2 diabetes, hemorrhoids, gallstones etc.

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