Peaches originated in China and were mentioned as far back as the 10th century BC in Chinese writings. In the 16th century, Spanish explorers brought the peach to America. American Indians are credited for spreading the seeds across the United States.
In China, peaches symbolize “long life”. They are highly nutritious and offer many health benefits. One large peach (about 175 grams) has 68 calories and only 4 of those calories are from fats (healthy fats). It is high in fiber, vitamin A, vitamin C, and potassium.
Health Benefits of Peaches
Eating fresh peaches (including the outer skin) can help:
- boost the immune system
- remove toxins from the body
- promote weight loss
- regulate bowels (prevent constipation and hemorrhoids)
- maintain healthy skin
- ease dry coughs
- protect the eyes (particularly from age-related disorders such as macular degeneration and cataracts)
- lower ones risk of developing cancer, heart disease, and arthritis.
Peach seeds should not be ingested because they contain a toxic substance.
Buying and Storing Fresh Peaches
Choose peaches with a red and yellow color. Avoid peaches with a green hue because they are not ripe. Once picked from the tree, they will not ripen. Fresh peaches should be slightly soft, have velvety skin without bruises, and a nice aroma.
Do not store peaches in the refrigerator because this can lessen its taste. It is best to store them at room temperature and should be eaten within 3-4 days.
Do not wash peaches until they are ready to be used.
To benefit dry skin, add 3 tablespoons of freshly squeezed peach juice to 3 tablespoons of sour cream and 1/2 teaspoon of lemon juice. Apply the cream on your face and wash off after 5 minutes.
Mix peach pulp with enough sweet almond oil to form a paste. Apply the mixture on your face and wash off after 20 minutes. This will also help treat dry skin.
To enjoy the health benefits of peaches, try one of these delicious smoothies:
• Blend 1 large peach (sliced), 1/2 cup of milk, and 6 ice cubes until slushy. Add 1/2 cup of peach yogurt and blend at a low setting until smooth.
• Blend 1 large peach (sliced), 1/2 banana, and 1 cup of milk until smooth. Add 1/2 cup of vanilla or peach ice cream and blend for 30 seconds on low speed.
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This post is part of the series: Other Healthy Fruits
Health benefits of fruits.