Apricot Health Benefits
Apricots are great tasting, seasonal fruit that have numerous health benefits and when available, especially fresh, home grown in the backyard, should be part of any healthy, well balanced diet.
100g of apricots contains around: 1.4g of protein, 11g of carbohydrates, 0.4 of fat and 2g of fibers - around 50 kcal per 100g of fruit.
Apricots are also contain number of vitamins and minerals - for example, around 1900 IU of vitamin A and 260mg of potassium per 100g of fruits.
But, apricots are rich in micronutrients that are usually not found in food charts like various antioxidants that promote immune system, help digestive system and promote overall health and wellbeing.
Health Benefits of Apricots
Apricots contain both insoluble and soluble dietary fibers, especially soluble fibers - they promote and help to maintain healthy blood glucose and HDL cholesterol levels. Although apricots have around 11g of carbs per 100g of fruits, these are moderately complex carbs and consuming apricots will not cause blood glucose levels go sky-high and will not cause issues with insulin level - on contrary ...
Vitamin A is a fat soluble vitamin, found in the form of provitamin A (provitamin A is found in fruits and vegetables, while preformed vitamin A is found in fish, meat and diary products). Although provitamin A absorption is not as good as preformed vitamin A absorption, single serving of 300g of apricots contains almost 6000 IU of vitamin A - practically daily dose of required vitamin A.
Vitamin A is important for proper immune system function, normal vision, maintaining healthy skin, teeth and bones, joints and soft tissue.
Best of all, vitamin A is just one of many antioxidants found in apricots. Other antioxidants found in apricots include: hydroxycinnamics, quercetin, epicatechins, proanthocyanidins, catechins, caffeic acid, gallic acid, ferulic acid, coumaric acid etc.
Potassium is one of the most important electrolytes that helps in maintaining proper cell balance, it aids in muscle function, helps regulate heartbeat and functions of neurons, promotes healthy digestion (especially in combination with insoluble fibers) and health of teeth and bones. During summer, when sweating is increased and loss of various minerals is increased, serving or two of apricots can significantly increase working capability and prolong feeling tired and fatigue.
Dried Apricots vs Fresh Apricots
Fresh fruits are always better than dried, apricots included. Dried apricots can be consumed out of season - they have great taste and many health benefits of fresh apricots. Just one has to chew little bit more :)
Also, fresh, home grown apricots simply melt in the mouth and have amazing taste.
Note that many dried apricots are treated with various chemicals (sulfites, for example) to extend their shelf life and to preserve their yellow color - these chemicals can cause health issues in people that are sensitive to such chemicals and have issues like asthma. Solution - consume untreated dried apricots that are somewhat brownish in color.
Apricots and Diets
Fruits intake is reduced during various diets, but it should be consumed, especially fruits like apricots. Of course, key of success is moderation.
Apricots on Keto Diet - during no carb days, when carbs intake is very low, usually less than 30g per day, there is very little room for fruits. But, if you have room in your daily carb intake, for example, 5g of additional carbs, take one smaller apricot (50g of fruit). It will help you endure your diet in many ways - it has great taste, very refreshing and have many beneficial nutrients that usually lack on no-carb days on Keto Diet.
During 're-feed' days on Keto Diet, be sure to include apricots in your diet - fibers, antioxidants, vitamins, minerals - everything what dieting body needs in order to stay healthy and lose fats, not muscles without adverse effects of calorie deficient diets.
Apricots on Carbohydrate Cycling Diet - on low carb days, include serving or two of apricots and/or similar fruits. On medium and high carbs days, be sure to increase fruits intake, just be sure to follow your planed macros.
Apricots on Mediterranean Diet - apricots are one of the preferred fruits on MD with many reasons. As long as it fits your daily macros, be sure to include apricots in your daily plan. After all, they are great as snack or as part of regular meals.
Long story short - enjoy fresh apricots and don't bother too much about calories and crunching numbers :)
If you are on a calorie deficient diet, be sure to follow your macros - eat apricots in moderation and enjoy this healthy and tasty fruit.