Health Tips: A Daily Apple Lowers Chemical Linked to Hardening of the Arteries

Eating an apple a day might in fact help keep the cardiologist away, new research suggests. In a study of healthy, middle-aged adults, consumption of one apple a day for four weeks lowered blood levels of a substance linked to hardening of the arteries by 40 percent. Taking capsules containing polyphenols—of the type found in apples—had a similar but less potent effect.

The study, funded by an apple industry group, found that the apples lowered blood levels of oxidized LDL or damaged low-density lipoprotein, the “bad” cholesterol. When LDL cholesterol interacts with free radicals to become oxidized, the cholesterol is more likely to promote inflammation and initiate hardening of the arteries.