Apples are not only delicious but also healthy. They contain lots of vitamins, minerals, fiber, and almost no fat. Since apples are 85 percent water, they are also low in calories. But: Around four million people in Germany are allergic to the fruit classic.
Many supermarket apples trigger allergies
What many people who are allergic to apples don’t know: the allergy is often dependent on the variety. For example, supermarket classics such as Jonagold, Golden Delicious, Gala, and Granny Smith often lead to unpleasant itching in allergy sufferers. Varieties such as Boskoop, Gravensteiner, and Finkenwerder Herbstprinz, on the other hand, can often be enjoyed without an allergic reaction. The Santana, a new Dutch breed, is also considered to be well tolerated.
BUND Lemgo: Allergy sufferers tolerate old apple varieties well
Apple-loving members of the BUND Lemgo started an initiative to find out which varieties are tolerable for allergy sufferers. They called on allergy sufferers to send them feedback on which apple varieties they can eat without problems. Conclusion of this survey: Old apple varieties, in particular, are classified as well tolerated. These varieties have a high polyphenol content.
Polyphenol in the apple makes the difference
It is assumed that the polyphenol renders the allergenic substances in the apple harmless. Polyphenols are aromatic compounds that belong to secondary plant substances. They cause the apple to be aromatic but less sweet. Apples with a high polyphenol content do not always have a perfect shape and the flesh discolors more quickly when cut, it tends to turn brown. Such flaws are not desirable in apples from the supermarket, and so many newly bred varieties contain fewer polyphenols than their predecessors.
Red apples are probably better tolerated than green ones
The main allergen of the apple is called “Mal d1”. The longer an apple is stored, the higher the allergen content. Allergy sufferers should therefore eat apples that are as fresh as possible. In addition, red apples seem to be better tolerated than green ones. If you know that you are suffering from an allergy, you should first approach it slowly and with small pieces.
The following applies to all apples: the important vitamins in pome fruit are located directly under the skin. It is, therefore, best to enjoy the fruit unpeeled. Cooking destroys or renders harmless the protein building blocks that cause allergies. That is why apple sauce, for example, is well tolerated by most allergy sufferers.