The apricot is a fruit that belongs to the family Rosaceae, which also includes peaches, plums, and cherries. Apricots are widely consumed around the world and are known for their sweet and juicy flavor. They are available in both fresh and dried forms and are used in a variety of dishes, including desserts, jams, and sauces.
Nutritional value of apricots
Apricots are a good source of several essential apricot nutrients, including vitamins, minerals, and fiber. A 100-gram serving of fresh apricots contains approximately :
Apricots also contain other nutrients, such as iron, zinc, and copper, in smaller amounts. Together all these nutrients in apricot offer one with optimum apricot nutrition.
The various nutritional and health-boosting properties of apricot are:
- Immunomodulatory properties
- Laxative properties
- Antioxidant properties
- Hepatoprotective properties
- Anticarcinogenic properties
- Cardioprotective properties
- Antimicrobial properties
- Anti-aging properties
- Anti-inflammatory properties
- Anti-dehydration properties
- Antitussive properties
- Antimutagenic properties
- Antispasmodic properties
- Sedative properties
Apricot health benefits
Apricots are delicious and nutritious fruits that offer a variety of apricot benefits for health. They are low in calories and high in fiber, making them an excellent snack choice for those looking to maintain a healthy weight. In addition to their low-calorie count, apricots are also packed with vitamins and minerals, including vitamins A and C, potassium, and fiber, which provide numerous apricot benefits.
Here are some of the primary and secondary apricot health benefits in more detail:
1. Offers nutritional support
Primary Benefit: Apricots are a great source of vitamins and minerals, including vitamins A, C, potassium, and fiber. The apricot’s nutritional value is mainly due to all these essential nutrients present in the fruit.  
Secondary Benefit: These nutrients can help boost the immune system, improve digestion, and support healthy skin. Vitamin A is essential for maintaining healthy skin, as it helps to repair damaged skin cells and prevent premature aging. Meanwhile, vitamin C is important for collagen production, which keeps the skin looking firm and youthful. 
2. Strengthens digestion power
Primary Benefit: Apricots are rich in fiber, which can promote regular bowel movements and prevent constipation. 
Secondary Benefit: The fiber in apricots can also help reduce inflammation in the gut and prevent the risk of colon cancer.  The fiber in apricots also helps to keep you feeling full, which can help prevent overeating and weight gain.
3. Improves eyesight
Primary Benefit: This benefit of apricots is due to the high levels of vitamin A in apricots. Vitamin A can help improve eye health and prevent age-related macular degeneration.
Secondary Benefit: Apricots also contain lutein and zeaxanthin, two antioxidants that can protect the eyes from damage caused by free radicals. These antioxidants help to prevent damage to the eyes caused by UV rays, which can lead to age-related vision loss .
4. Keeps your heart healthy
Primary Benefit: Apricots are a good source of potassium, which can help regulate blood pressure and prevent the risk of heart disease. 
Secondary Benefit: The fiber in apricots can also help lower cholesterol levels and reduce the risk of heart disease. Fiber helps to remove excess cholesterol from the body, which can lead to a lower risk of heart disease and stroke .
5. Improves skin health
Primary Benefit: Apricots contain antioxidants such as vitamin C, which can help protect the skin from damage caused by free radicals.
Secondary Benefit: The vitamin A in apricots can also promote healthy skin by preventing acne and reducing the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. Vitamin A helps to regulate skin cell growth, which can prevent the formation of acne and reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles .
6. Supports bone health
Primary Benefit: The calcium and phosphorus in apricots can help improve bone density and prevent the risk of osteoporosis. 
Secondary Benefit: The magnesium in apricots can also support healthy bone development and prevent bone loss. Magnesium is essential for healthy bones, as it helps to regulate calcium levels in the body .
7. Aids in weight management
Primary Benefit: Apricots are low in calories and high in fiber, making them a great snack for weight management. 
Secondary Benefit: The fiber in apricots can also help reduce appetite and promote feelings of fullness, leading to reduced calorie intake. Eating high-fiber foods like apricots can help you feel fuller for longer, which can help prevent overeating and weight gain.
8. Reduces inflammation in the body
Primary Benefit: The antioxidants in apricots can help reduce inflammation in the body, preventing the risk of chronic diseases such as arthritis. 
Secondary Benefit: Apricots also contain beta-carotene, which can help reduce inflammation in the body and improve immune function. Beta-carotene is converted to vitamin A in the body, which helps to regulate immune function and prevent inflammation.
Uses of apricots
The uses of apricot may be divided into three broad categories: therapeutic uses, cosmetic uses, and users in the food industry.
- The therapeutic uses of apricots include their use for treating a wide range of human ailments such as inflammation, cancer, bacterial, viral, or parasitic infections, high blood pressure, weakened immune functions, asthma, constipation, infertility, poor gut health, weakened vision, skin issues, neurodegenerative diseases, arteriosclerosis and many more.   
- Apricots have a rich antioxidant profile. The fruit is also rich in essential fatty acids. The extracts of the fruit are often used in the beauty industry to make several skin care products such as creams, face packs, and exfoliating scrubs. Apricot oil, specifically, is a skin-nourishing agent and can give you smooth and soft skin. That makes apricot oil one of the most coveted ingredients in the cosmetic industry.
- In the food industry, apricot is often used to make jams and jellies, preservatives and sauces, juices and beverages, etc 
How to consume apricots? 
It is best to consume fresh apricots when they are ripe. Fresh, ripe apricots are heavenly in taste. You may also consume apricot as a dry, dehydrated fruit.  This versatile fruit, whether fresh or dry, may be consumed in various ways as listed below:
- As a frozen treat
- As a dry fruit topping for your desserts and puddings
- As a stir-fried sweet treat
- In milkshakes
- In fruit salads
- As a dry fruit in breakfast cereals
- As a trail mix
- In pureed form ice creams or chilled yogurt
- In cakes and muffins
- In scones, jams, and jellies
- In refreshing smoothies
Side effects of apricots
- Possibility of blood sugar spikes: Besides fresh fruit, dried apricots are also highly popular. But dried apricots have a higher concentration of carbohydrates in a small package. Therefore, overconsumption of dried apricots will lead to sudden blood sugar spikes and may prove harmful for diabetic patients.
Possibility of cyanide toxicity: Amygdalin, a compound present in the kernels of the apricot fruit gets converted to cyanide post-consumption. The β-glucosidase enzyme in the kernels catalyzes the process of amygdalin hydrolysis. Apricot kernels may not release a huge amount of cyanide when swallowed as a whole fruit, but grinding it or chewing increases toxicity by releasing the emulsion from lysosomes. 
1. What is the best trick for consuming apricots for diabetic patients?
Diabetic patients must consume apricots in combination with other healthy fat and protein sources such as cheese, seeds, and nuts. This will prevent sudden blood sugar spikes.
2. In what forms can you consume apricot?
Apricots may be eaten fresh, dried, canned, or as preserves.
3. How much apricot can I consume per day?
You may consume 30 grams of apricot per day.
4. Is apricot a hot or cold fruit?
Apricot is a cold fruit. It comes with cooling properties and that makes it an ideal fruit for the summer season.
5. Can I soak the apricot fruit overnight?
If it is raw apricot, you need not soak the fruit overnight. But in the case of dry apricots, it is best to soak the dry fruits overnight to make them softer and more digestible.
In conclusion, apricots are a nutritious and delicious fruit that offer a range of health benefits. They are a rich source of vitamins, minerals, fiber, and antioxidants that can improve various aspects of health, including digestion, eye health, heart health, skin health, bone health, weight management, and brain function. Incorporating apricots into a balanced diet can be a simple and enjoyable way to support overall health and well-being. However, it’s important to keep in mind that apricots are a high-sugar fruit and should be consumed in moderation as part of a healthy diet.
This article has been written from a health and wellness perspective and is not a substitute for medical advice.
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