The New Year always seems to be a time to reset, and that often includes a refocus towards healthy eating lifestyles. But for many out there with degenerative diseases, eating the right foods can be an important step in fighting the disease and its symptoms. As apple growers, we often field questions from people about apples. Some are basic, most have a quick answer, and then there are the few questions that really pique your curiosity. For me, one of those questions has come in often over the past year and always mentions the Gerson’s Therapy diet and the person’s need to find organic apples.
After brief research, I learned that organic apples are a key ingredient in Gerson’s Therapy, which was developed in the 1920s and focuses on an organic, vegetarian, and raw diet to help heal the body from degenerative diseases, including certain cancers, diabetes, heart disease, and more. The following information is going to focus on why and which organic apple varieties are recommended for the therapy. This post is not meant to encourage you to follow the therapy (always consult with your health professional first) as that’s not our role as apple experts. We simply want to share a new-to-us way that people are using organic apples, and how one would continue to follow this regime even if the recommended variety was not available for a certain period of the year.
Juicing is a big part of Gerson’s Therapy, and the two main juices recommended feature tart organic apples as an ingredient. Why tart? Compared to sweeter varieties like Fuji or Golden Delicious, tart apples have higher levels of malic acid which is thought to boost metabolism and aid in detoxification. The most tart apple variety we grow organically at Stemilt is Granny Smith, and we’ve grown it organically here in Washington State for nearly three decades! The famously green apple is available most months of the year organically, making it the go-to option for those on this therapy. Pink Lady® follows Granny Smith on the tartness scale and would be another great option to seek if Granny Smith is unavailable. The Pink Lady® is also available most months of the year. In the fall, organic McIntosh and organic Braeburn apples would be two additional alternatives. They both have shorter seasons and may be a bit difficult to find, but do lean to the tart side of the sweet-tart spectrum.
I hope you enjoyed learning a bit more about the seasonality of certain organic apples and how certain people utilize apples to aid in their health. We all know that ‘an apple a day keeps the doctor away’ and the many delicious varieties out there give us even more reason to crunch on apples often. I’d love to hear the unique ways that you use apples in your daily life. If you have something fun to share please write it in the comments below.