Apple Peels and Green Tomatoes Prevent Muscle Loss


green tomatoes recipe

As you get older, your body starts to rebel. This isn’t a revelation for anyone.

But did you know that your muscles could start to lose mass and function as early as the age of 30?

It’s a completely natural process, but those who do not exercise regularly could start to experience early muscle atrophy. Even if you are physically active, an injury or disease that prevents you from using your muscles could end up contributing to muscle loss.

Of course, the simplest solution would appear to be a call to be more active, but a new study has found that eating the peels of apples and consuming green tomatoes could actually help prevent muscle loss and weakness as you get older.

There’s a protein – ATF4 – that causes the muscle loss during aging. It was discovered by researchers at the University of Iowa and was found to cause a reduction in muscle protein synthesis.

The researchers theorized that the ursolic acid found in apple peels and the tomatidine found in green tomatoes would decrease the activity of this protein. Researchers tested their theory by using two groups of older mice.

Mice were given tomatidine or ursolic acid as part of their diets for a two month period. Both groups of mice had a 30% boost in muscle strength and a 10% enhancement in muscle mass when compared to the control group.

The scientists also discovered that the mice had increased muscle quality as well, which meant that the two compounds they tested restored muscle mass to the levels they would have been in young adult mice.

In the abstract of the study, published in The Journal of Biological Chemistry, the researchers stated, “we identified two small molecules that significantly reduce age-related deficits in skeletal muscle strength, quality and mass: ursolic acid (a pentacyclic triterpenoid found in apples) and tomatidine (a steroidal alkaloid derived from green tomatoes) … We found that a targeted reduction in skeletal muscle ATF4 expression reduces age-related deficits in skeletal muscle strength, quality and mass, similar to ursolic acid and tomatidine.

These results elucidate ATF4 as a critical mediator of age-related muscle weakness and atrophy.” Basically, this find could lead to many improvements in muscles therapies, especially those aimed towards muscle regeneration in older adults. The results of this study could help keep adults physically fit and active for much longer, and all because of apples and green tomatoes.

How Do You Integrate Apple Peels & Green Tomatoes?

Now that you know about the amazing benefits, it is time to start thinking about how you can incorporate apples and green tomatoes into your daily diet. Of course, many of you may already eat apples fairly regularly. After all, aside from the recent revelation concerning their ability to help stop the effects of muscle loss, it’s a well known saying that an apple a day keeps the doctor away, right? With that in mind, apples may sound like they’d be easy to include in your diet, but what do you do with green tomatoes?

There are plenty of ways to prepare green tomatoes other than the classic fried green tomatoes.

Green tomatoes can be a little trickier to pick out, especially if you are growing them yourself in your own garden. Unripe green tomatoes have the same hue as unripe red tomatoes. Once they start to ripen, however, they will go through a subtle color change from top to bottom and become much brighter.

You can also tell by feel if the tomato is ripe: It should be firm when pressure is applied, but not hard as a rock. They taste very similar to red tomatoes, but with slight variation in the sweetness or the tanginess of the flavor. Remember, there is a difference between a green tomato and an unripe tomato. While still similar in nutrients, unripe tomatoes will not have the same amount of those nutrients because it is not fully ripe.

green tomatoes

Three Green Tomato Recipes You Should Definitely Try

Tomato Relish

TOTAL TIME: Prep: 1 hour. Process: 15 minutes per batch
MAKES: 6 servings
·    1 pound of green tomatoes

  •    1/2 large onion
    ·    1/2 large red onion
    ·    1 large green pepper
    ·    1/2 teaspoon sea salt
    ·    1/4 cup cider vinegar
    ·    1/4 cup stevia
    ·    1/2 tablespoon celery seed
    ·    1/2 teaspoon mustard seed

1.    Purée tomatoes, onions and peppers in a food processor. Stir in salt. Run the mixture through two strainers for a duration of about an hour and a half.
2.    After getting rid of the liquid that you have strained out, put the veggie mixture into a pot and stir in remaining ingredients. Bring the mix to a boil and reduce for half an hour.
3.    If you choose to can the mixture for a longer period of time, ladle it into a hot pint jar without any air bubbles. Clean the jar rims and affix the lids as tightly as you can.
4.   From there, put the jar in a pot of boiling water and boil for 15 minutes. Let stand and remove from the pot. Let the jar air cool in room temperature.

Tomato Pie

TOTAL TIME: Prep: 15 minutes. Bake: 65 minutes
MAKES: 6 to 8 servings
·    1-1/2 cups sugar
·    5 tablespoons of flour
·    Pinch of salt
·    4 cups sliced green tomatoes
·    1 tablespoon vanilla extract
·    Store made pastry for crust pie
·    1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
1.    Combine the sugar, flour and salt into a bowl with the tomatoes and vanilla, making sure to stir until all pieces are coated.
2.    Line an oven-safe dish with pie crust and add filling, making sure to lightly brush the top with oil. Add pie crust to the top, locking the edges. Bake at 325° for 65 minutes and let cook for at least 20 minutes.

Tomato Salsa

TOTAL TIME: Prep: 1-1/2 hours. Process: 20 minutes.
MAKES: 4 servings
·    2 large tomatoes, cleaned and halved
·    2 large green peppers, cleaned and sliced
·    2 large onions, diced

  •    1 small jalepeno, diced
    ·    2 ounces tomato paste
    ·    2 ounces puréed tomatoes
    ·    1/2 red pepper, diced
    ·    1 garlic clove, minced
    ·    1/4 tablespoon sea salt
    ·    1/4 teaspoon hot sauce

1.    In a large open pot, cook tomatoes and onions at medium heat for no more than 20 minutes. Drain excess liquid and reduce the mixture.
2.    Add jalapeno, green peppers, tomato purée, tomato paste, red pepper, garlic, sea salt and hot sauce and boil mixture for 10 minutes. From there, leave uncovered on low heat for 20 minutes, stirring frequently until cool.
3.    Pour room temperature mixture into a hot 1-pint jar and remove any air bubbles. Wipe jar clean and place lid on top, screwing it on as tightly as you can.
4.    Place jar into a pot with boiling water, making sure it is totally covered with water. Let stand for 20 minutes. From there, remove the jar and allow it to cool in room temperature.

As you can see, green tomatoes can be very versatile. Here are a few more ideas on how you can work with apples in your kitchen, especially the peels.

green tomatoes benefits

These ideas are only helpful if you leave the peels on the apples!

More Tomato Recipes…

Apple Flatbread

Make homemade pizza dough – or use store-bought pizza dough if you are short on time – and top with apples along with other sweet pizza toppings for a quick and fun meal.

Apple Jelly

You can make your own apple jelly or jam using the peels of apples and the apple cores. Any color peel will work, but your jelly will take on the color you choose.

Apple Oatmeal

Frozen apple peels make a great addition to hot oatmeal. You may want to put them through a food processor first, before garnishing the oatmeal for a finer and more edible texture.

Apple Peel Smoothies

Apple peels go well in smoothies. They have fiber and flavor, even in this liquefied state. If you make smoothies often, keep a bag of apple peels in your freezer so you always have some on hand to toss into your blender.

More Apple Peel & Green Tomatoes Ideas…

Apple Peel Snacks

Coat fresh apple peels with cinnamon, or any other spice that you enjoy. Once dry, these will make delicious, healthy and portable snacks for kids and adults.

Apple Tea

You can make apple tea by boiling water, apple peels, and cinnamon. Strain this mixture into a tea pot or separate tea cups for a healthy, apple peel tea.

What Else?

Apple-Cabbage Slaw

Add thin slices of apples and apple skins to your favorite coleslaw recipe for a sweet boost in flavor.

Caramelized Apple Skin Chips

These go great as dessert garnishes or as a sweet treat on their own. They are quick and easy to make, too. Simply heat butter in a skillet and sauté apple skins or thin slices of apples with sugar until they start to brown.

Stuffed Apple Skins

If raw apple skins don’t appeal to you, then simply stuff the skins. After stuffing them with your choice of salty or sweet foods, bake them. Then, remove the flesh of the apple instead of peeling the skin off and hold the stuffed skin together with string while baking.

Grilled Cheese and Apple Sandwiches

Just add apple slices to a cheese sandwich and grill. A Panini press is a great way to make these sandwiches as you won’t have to worry about the apples falling out. If you don’t have a press, cooking the sandwiches in a skillet for a couple of minutes on each side will work just as well.

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These are all only a few ideas of how to incorporate green tomatoes and apple peels into your meals, but, as you can see, they are both very versatile fruits. The important thing to remember is the health benefits that frequent inclusions in your diet of these two foods will produce.

The best way to prevent muscle loss is to keep up regular exercise and physical activity, as well as ensuring your diet includes foods like green tomatoes and apple peels to help boost muscle tone.

-Sara Campanelli

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Gym Junkies Founder & Editor in Chief at Gym Junkies LLC
I’m Terry and I’m here to help you achieve your fitness goals. I truly believe anyone can achieve the figure they want with the proper guidance. Through my extensive fitness blog, top fitness videos, leading workout supplements, and top selling eBooks, I have been able to help thousands of people online lose weight, tone up and get in shape. My passion is helping people all around the world change their lives for the better.
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