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Health Benefits of Peaches

If you’ve seen Ice Age 3, you know what “peaches” mean—something sweet, round, and fuzzy! And round is good—according to Manny, round is foxy.

Though eating peaches isn’t about to make you sweet, fuzzy, or round, it can give you a burst of sweet, juicy flavor in every bite. And seeing as it’s National Peach Month, and Manny and Ellie are apparently into the fruit, why not have yourself a peach? If not for the mammoths, then how about for the following health benefits:

Heart Protection: Because peaches are considered good sources of lutein and lycopene, powerful phytochemicals that have been linked to preventing certain health problems, they may help fight heart disease as well as cancer and macular degeneration.

Tummy Health: If you’ve got worms in your intestinal tract, you can go fishing—or you can eat a peach. Peaches are an anti-parasitic, and help rid the body of worm infestations.

Potassium Source: Peaches are good sources of potassium as well as flavonoids, carotenes and natural sugars.

Eye Helath: The caretenoids in peaches also help protect your eyes from the sun’s harmful rays, slowing down night blindness and cataract progression.

Low-Calorie Food: If you’re looking for a diet-friendly nibble, a peach is a good choice. With only 43 calories per 100 grams, it makes a filling, healthy snack. Mix it up with some yogurt and granola for a nutrient-packed breakfast.

Vitamin C Source: A peach will fulfill about 75% of your daily vitamin C needs. They are also good sources of iron.

Laxative: Instead of turning to drugs, try a peach if you’re having toilet troubles. With a high concentration of water and fiber, peaches can help you digest your food and, if eaten regularly, they can help prevent bowel problems in the future. They also work as a diuretic.

If you’ve got a craving for peaches, try to eat the fresh ones; canned peaches in syrup usually have much higher calorie counts as well as lower vitamin counts, and dried peaches have about six times the calories of fresh peaches.

Other great ways to eat peaches—besides raw—include in frozen yogurt, smoothies, curry dishes, sandwiches and just about anything that could use a dash of healthy sweetness. Peaches are also excellent roasted, mixed in with other fruits, or in healthier versions of your favorite desserts, such as crisps, fruit pizzas and pies, or ice cream.