EU-funded ISAFRUIT research suggests consuming apples reduces cholesterol

Eating two apples a day can help reduce cholesterol by as much as 10 per cent according to the EU-funded, £11.7m ISAFRUIT project, which began in January 2006 to find ways of improving the profit margins and nutritional values of fruit.

Some 200 researchers from 61 institutions were involved in the project, which is one of eight EU-funded schemes on food quality and safety presented at a conference at the European Parliament last month.

The project also developed more efficient ways of breeding new fruit varieties and ways to reduce allergic components in fruits.

Scientists also looked into new sustainable and safer technologies to fight against fruit pests and diseases through the diminished or non-use of pesticides.

For example, they found that dipping apples and peaches in hot water at precise temperatures (20 seconds at 60 degsC for peaches, 40 seconds at 50-52 degsC for apples) can reduce brown rot by 80 per cent and remove E. coli and salmonella bacteria.

The treatment shows its efficiency for removing rot agents, human pathogens such as E. coli, salmonella and listeria and allowing energy saving by heating water with hot gas from cooling plants.


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