A delicious juicy peach has an abundance of health benefits and is low in calories!

“Life is better than death, I believe, if only because it is less boring, and because it has fresh peaches in it.” ― Alice Walker

16 Reasons Peaches Are Peachy Keen for Your Body

  1. Peaches keep the skin healthy.  The Vitamin A and C in peaches make them is a great moisturizer and are often used in cosmetics. It also helps in regenerating skin tissue.
  2. A peach is a great snack food for losing weight.  It can give you the feeling of being full, so you will eat less.   One peach contains about 35-50 calories and no fat!
  3. Peach flowers have sedative properties.  A remedy for restlessness includes boiling peach flowers in water along with some honey.
  4. Peaches nourish the scalp which helps reduce hair loss.
  5. In China Peach tea is used as a kidney cleanser.
  6. A stress reliever!  Peaches help reduce anxiety.  Peaches are often referred to as the ‘Fruit of Calmness’ in Hungary.
  7. Peaches have a positive effect in preventing cancer (due to its high selenium content).
  8. Peaches are known to be helpful in removing worms from the intestines.
  9. Peaches have a diuretic effect – to cleanse your kidneys and bladder.
  10. Peaches fight obesity-related diabetes and cardiovascular disease with its spectrum of antioxidants.   Texas AgriLife Research.
  11. Compounds in stone fruits can help with “metabolic syndrome,” according to Dr. Luis Cisneros-Zevallos, AgriLife Research food scientist. Study at the American Chemical Society in Philadelphia.
  12. Cisneros-Zevallos  says: “Our work indicates that phenolic compounds present in these fruits have anti-obesity, anti-inflammatory and anti-diabetic properties in different cell lines and may also reduce the oxidation of bad cholesterol LDL which is associated with cardiovascular disease.”

  13. Those suffering from gout and rheumatism are recommended by dieticians to eat peaches because peaches tend to have a diuretic and a light laxative effect.
  14. Can calm a stomach.
  15. Peaches are thought to be an aphrodisiac as well.
  16. Peaches Inhibit tumour growth activity.  Peaches have excellent antimicrobial and antioxidant activity according to research.
  17. Chronic bronchitis coughs and gastritis is helped with the medicinal tea of the leaves and bark of peach trees.
peaches

Sweet peaches on a peach tree branch in an orchard

History of Peaches

Peaches have been grown since the prehistoric ages and were first cultivated in China. They are considered a Chinese symbol of immortality and friendship.  The Romans thought the peach originated in Persia; its Latin name reflects this: ‘Prunus persica’ meaning ‘Persian Apples ’.

  • Peach trees first came to America by Columbus on his second and third voyages.
  • The first peach orchard in the USA was established in Florida in 1565.
  • In 1779, peaches were harvested at the mouth of the Niagara River in Canada for local consumption.
  • By 1875, there were 375,000 peach trees in Ontario, Canada (not one of those varieties remains today).

Peach Trivia

  • Renoir encouraged students to improve their painting skills by reproducing the textures and colours of peaches.
  • Georgia is the home of “The world’s largest peach cobbler” which is 11 feet by 5 feet and made yearly.
  • Since 1982, August is National Peach Month in the USA.
  • China is the largest producer of peaches in the world and Italy is the second.
  • The peach tree is often considered to be the tree of life.
  • Georgia is the Peach State, although California produces about 50% of the USA peaches.
  • Close relatives of almonds, peach seeds are used as an almond oil substitute in cosmetic preparations.
  • This fruit is a member of the Rosaceae family and is a close relative of almonds.
  • The peach fruit is a symbol of good luck, protection, and longevity in China.
  • Peaches have a long history of being used around the world.

There are only 70 calories in a large peach, but more important for weight management and health are its many other powerful nutritional benefits.

Nutrition:

  • One large peach has less than 70 calories and contains 3 grams of fiber.
  • It is a good source of vitamins A and C.
  • There is 1.5 grams of protein and 0.4 grams of fat in one large peach.
  • A large peach provides 332 mg potassium, nearly 10 percent of the daily recommended amount
  • Contain high quantity of antioxidants, especially chlorogenic acid which reduces inflammation and controls the body’s aging process.

Caution:  The peach pit contains hydrocyanic acid which is a poisonous substance. Since it does not taste good, most people are unlikely to eat it.

Don’t Miss Out!

Peaches are so tasty and nutritious you will want to get the most from your peaches.

How to Buy Peaches

To make sure you have a good for you juicy, sweet peach here is what to look for:

  • Always buy organic Peaches are always on the Dirty Dozen list. 12 Foods You MUST Eat Organic
  • Peaches bruise easily so don’t use your fingertips to check for firmness. Hold the peach in your whole hand.
  • There should be a slight give to the flesh; not rock-hard or mushy.
  • Make sure there is not green around the stem meaning they aren’t fully ripe)
  • Avoid ones that have shriveled skin as that means they’re old.
  • A well-defined crease.
  • Ripe fruits yield to gentle pressure and feature sweet aroma.

How to Store Peaches

  • To ripen peaches keep them on the counter at room temperature until they are ripe.
  • Once they are ripe, store peaches in the crisper bin of your refrigerator (they will keep for up to five days).
  • Tip: To quicken the ripening process, place peaches in a paper bag.
  • Slightly hard but mature fruits can be kept at room temperature until they ripen.

child eating peach

Tips for Eating and Cooking

Ripe peaches that have been stored in the refrigerator should be brought to the room temperature before being eaten to enjoy their full flavour.

Wash them in cold running water rubbing them gently to remove the peach fuzz just before eating.  Eat fresh ripe peaches whole along with skin as this is where many of the nutrients are.

To prepare for baking, cut the peach lengthwise deeply until the hard seed felt and then remove the seed.

Sliced peaches will turn brown with the exposure to air due to conversion in iron form from ferrous oxide to ferric oxide. If you are serving them sliced, it is best to rinse slices in water added with few drops of fresh lemon.

Find you have more peaches on hand than you can eat or make into something right away? Try freezing them, slice them, lay them on a baking tray and put in the freezer for a few hours until they’re frozen through. Then put the peaches into a re-sealable plastic bag and freeze until ready to use. They’ll keep at least 6 months (longer in a free-standing freezer) and are perfect to use in baking. It is much the same as Freezing Berries

Peach Recipes

 

Sweet Peaches and Cream Popsicles

Cool Sweet Peaches and Cream Popsicles (Dairy-free)

Creamy Peach Vegan Ice Cream

Strawberry Peach Ice Cream – this sugar-free ice cream is easy to make and you don’t need an ice cream maker.

Strawberry Peach Green Smoothie

Peach Berry Crumble:  This recipe is wheat free, sugar-free and delicious.

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Copyright © Diana Herrington http://www.realfoodforlife.com