Apple is one of the most nutritious fruits and is considered as a powerhouse of vitamins and antioxidants. The beverages made from apples like apple juice and apple cider are considered nutritious and good for health. However, the question people generally ask is since both the beverages – juice and cider is made from fresh apples what is the difference between the two and how are they made? Which one is healthier? Here, we have brought answers of all your queries regarding apple juice and apple cider.
In order to understand the difference between the two, it is important to understand their manufacturing process.
Making of Apple cider
In the US, apple cider is referred to the apple juice which is not filtered to remove the pulp. For making apple cider, fresh fruits are picked and cut into pieces. These pieces are then blended in a blender. The consistency of the blend is like that of applesauce.
This blend is then covered with a muslin cloth and is kept in wooden racks. Here, in the wooden racks, hydraulic pressure is given to the blend. Now what oozes out from this process is fresh apple cider. This cider is then stored in clean glass bottles. If it needs to be stored than it must be refrigerated. Cider does not contain any artificial sugar or flavors. At the time of storage, Potassium Sorbet is added in commercially available cider. It helps in preventing it from fermenting.
Making of Apple juice
Apple juice is simply made by pressing the apples in a juicer and storing the juice in tins and cans. However, the commercially available juice available in market contains sugar and flavors. Apple juice comes in two variants – cloud and clear.
Clear apple juice is liked more by people because of its sweet taste and clear, see through appearance. But the fact is that cloudy juice is more nutritious as it contains starch and pectin along with other nutrients. However, both the variants contain flavanoids and antioxidants like phytonutrients.
What is Apple cider vinegar?
While discussing the benefits of apple juice and apple cider, it would not be out of place to put a few words about the benefits of apple cider vinegar as well. It is different from apple cider and apple juice as it is prepared by the fermentation of fresh crushed apples by adding bacteria and yeast.
A small amount of this liquid if had daily can do wonders to our health. Moreover, you can also apply the liquid of the skin to see its effects. Therapists or physicians always advise to consume the liquid regularly. However, the amount should be in moderation, since it is acidic in nature. The right amount to be consumed is a few teaspoons daily. Moreover, having it raw can also be harmful. Always dilute it in water or any juice.
- The high amount of potassium and malic acid in ACV can help in reducing the cholesterol and blood pressure level
- It helps enhance the digestion levels
- Reduces the problem of heartburn
- Helps in weight loss since it breaks down the extra fats in the body
- Good for diabetic patients as it reduces the blood sugar level
- Helps cure sinus problems and sore throats
Which is healthier- cider or juice?
Now comes the question of which one is better than the other? Apple cider is more nutritious or apple juice? If somebody asks me to choose a glass of apple juice then I would surely pick one, which would be carrying pulpy, non-clarified juice, as I know it is healthier than processed apple juice.
Actually, a glass of pulpy and non-clarified apple juice contains more anti-oxidants than clear juice, which are essential to neutralize free radicals, molecules, which are highly responsible for damaging body cells and contributing to several diseases. The same study further states that cloudy apple juice carries two times higher anti-oxidants, which help fighting heart disease and even deadly cancer.
This is really a significant study as it impels us to change our habit to look out for clean and processed apple juice, which costs much and contains fewer advantages. Interestingly, apple contains many other health benefits as well, which we cannot ignore.
Benefits of fresh apple cider:
Well the fact is that though both the beverages are nutritious but fresh apple cider is more nutritious than commercially available juice as it contains starch and pectin and does not contain artificial sugar or flavors.
Apple cider contains more of polyphenol compounds of apple than the commercially available clear apple juice. Fresh cider may contain 2 or 4 times the amount of polyphenols than the clear juice. Research is on to understand the role of polyphenols in reducing cancer risk.
While cider may be a healthier choice, it can pose a safety concern especially the one extracted from cider mill. This often remains unpasteurized and may contain bacteria. For those with strong immune system, this may not be a problem but those with compromised body immunity like patients of cancer, diabetes and AIDS, it may pose certain health risks.
It may not be suitable for people with vulnerable immune system like infants, children, elderly people and pregnant women. FDA recommends boiling the fresh apple cider to kill bacteria before consumption. It would be safe for everybody.
While apple cider certainly has more benefits, this does not mean that juice is not a healthy option. When eating out, apple juice is a sensible choice if you really want to balance your meal. It has very few calories and is high on nutrients. A glass of six ounce of juice only contains 87 calories and hence is quite healthy. Apple cider does not contain any kind of cholesterol and the pectin found in cider has been shown as a chief ingredient in keeping the serum cholesterol levels of blood low.
So, the next time when you have to make a choice between cider and juice, you can go for cider for more health benefits.