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Ask Tufts Experts April 2007 Issue

Q: I have heard that the greatest nutritional value of the apple is in the skin. In making applesauce by cooking the apples with their skins on, do the vitamins and other nutrients remain in the sauce?

Answer :  Jeffrey B. Blumberg, PhD, director of the Antioxidants Research Laboratory at Tufts’ Jean Mayer USDA Human Nutrition Research Center on Aging, replies, “There is certainly nutritional value in apple skin, as it contains a variety of phytochemicals (‘phytonutrients’), particularly flavonoids. This is the case for the skin of most fruits and vegetables, as these compounds are phytoalexins (compounds protecting the plant from environmental stresses, like UV light, molds and insects) and so need to…

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