An Apple a Day Can Keep Weakness Away, Study Says

Foods such as apples and blackberries may help prevent frailty in older adults, a new study suggests.

These fruits contain a flavonoid called quercetin, which may be the most important ingredient in fighting health conditions associated with the aging process.

This bitter compound is found in fruits, vegetables, leaves, seeds, red onions, grains, kale, and other food supplements.

Research has found that for every 10 mg of flavanols consumed per day, there is a 20% reduction in frailty.

“There may be some truth to the old adage, an apple a day keeps the doctor around.” [or frailty] leave,” the author said.

Figure: iStock

“Since a medium-sized apple contains about 10 mg of flavanols, you can easily get 10 mg of flavanols per person per day.”

However, the team also said there was “no significant” association between total flavonoid intake and frailty.

Co-author Shivani Sahni said: “Although total flavonoid intake was not significantly associated with frailty, higher intake of flavanols, a subclass of flavonoids, was associated with lower incidence of frailty .

“Specifically, higher intake of quercetin was the flavonoid most associated with protection from frailty.”

Ms Sahni said the data suggested there might be subclasses of flavonoids that were more likely to protect against frailty.

Future research should focus on dietary interventions with flavanols or quercetin for frailty, the researchers said.

Further studies involving people from different backgrounds are needed, they said.

The findings were published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition.

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What is Frailty Syndrome?

According to Age UK, frailty often manifests itself in issues such as decreased muscle strength and fatigue.

This means that people may have relatively “minor” health problems, such as urinary tract infections, that can have serious long-term effects on their health.

About 10 percent of people over the age of 65 have it, rising to 25 to 50 percent of people over the age of 85.

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