Apricots have the scientific name Prunus armeniaca because it is widely believed that the fruit originated in Armenia. There was even an archeological study that dug up apricot seeds dating back to the Copper Age in that country.
Today apricots are grown in various parts of Europe, North Africa, Japan and Australia. In 2009, around 3,800,000 tons of the fruit were produced, with Turkey being the number one producer.
It’s just as well that there are a lot of apricots to go around as this fruit has a lot to offer for your quest to Become Superhuman. Specifically, it can help you keep good eyesight and improve recovery.
Read on to find out the health benefits of apricots and why the Superhuman Food Pyramid strongly recommends you add this fruit in your diet.
The most abundant nutrient found in apricots is beta-carotene. While this is popularly thought of as a type of Vitamin A, it is more accurately defined as a Provitamin A substance. That means it is a precursor from which the body can derive the said vitamin. This substance also bestows the orange pigment of the fruits and vegetables that contain it.
Retinal is the specific metabolized form of Vitamin A that makes low-light and color vision possible. It is a light-absorbing molecule that is an important component of the retina. This is the reason why the most common early manifestation of Vitamin A deficiency is abnormally poor vision in reduced light or night blindness. Fortunately humans (unlike pure carnivores) possess the specific intestinal enzyme that can break down beta-carotene into retinal.
Thus apricots are one of the fruits that can help you maintain normal eyesight and reduce the risk of disorders like age-related macular degeneration. There was one study that showed how high intake of Vitamin A can lower the chances of developing cataracts by around 40%.
Next to beta-carotene, apricots are also a good source of Vitamin C and dietary fiber. As you may know, ascorbic acid is one of the main water-soluble vitamins that play a lot of important roles in the body from healing wounds to preventing cellular damage due to free radicals. Dietary fiber meanwhile is a frequently recommended nutrient for regulating cholesterol levels.
Apricot Practical Uses:
As with any other fruit, it’s better to purchase apricots when they’re in peak season. In northern hemisphere regions that would be somewhere between the middle of May and August. Here are a few tips for selecting and storing these fruits.
- To make sure you get good and ripe ones check that they’re firm, have a deep yellow-orange color, and that there are little or no bruises.
- If you happen to buy some that aren’t fully ripe yet, you can temporarily store them in a paper bag in a room temperature location that is not reached by direct light. They’ll be ripe after 2 days.
- Ripe apricots can be kept in a sealed glass food container and refrigerated up to about a week.
The best way to maximize the nutrients in apricots is enjoy them as fresh fruit desserts. You can:
- Dice and mix the pieces with just 2-3 ounces of cream cheese and then sprinkle the whole thing with nuts.
- You can also turn apricots into a topping for baked goodies or frozen yoghurt. Dice or slice the fruit and mix them in just a tablespoon or two of dessert wine. Chill the mixture and serve as a topping later with the dessert.
In the next post, I’ll tell you the benefits of bananas that will help you in your quest to Become Superhuman.
In the meantime, if you care to jump ahead, here is a complete listing of the fruits on Superhuman Food Pyramid:
If you have questions, comments or feedback about the benefits of apricots, the Superhuman Food Pyramid, this website, or other aspects of Becoming Superhuman, then leave your thoughts below, as well as any tips you have on the benefits of apricots.