An apple a day might not only keep the doctor away, but it may also keep old age away. A new study says that the fruit—or rather, the peels of the apple—could slow down the muscle tissue breakdown associated with aging.
By feeding apple peels to mice, researchers advise they could directly examine its effect on the protein ATF4. Research has found this protein is largely responsible for the breakdown of muscle tissue; and researchers have also found that the compounds in the apple peel have the potential to significantly reduce levels of this protein in this body.
“Many of us know from our own experiences that muscle weakness and atrophy are big problems as we become older,” explains Christopher Adams, who is the professor of internal medicine at the University of Iowa Carver College of Medicine. The senior author of this study goes on to say, “These problems have a major impact on our quality of life and health.”
More accurately, scientists also found the compound increased muscle mass by at least ten percent and, more importantly, that the compound increased muscle quality by as much as 30 percent. Thus, the study says that these effects suggest the compound is significantly related both muscle mass and strength, restoring them to the same levels as a young adult.
Adams also says, “Based on these results, ursolic acid and tomatidine appear to have a lot of potential as tools for dealing with muscle weakness and atrophy during aging. We also thought we might be able to use ursolic acid and tomatidine as tools to find a root cause of muscle weakness and atrophy during aging.”