A Cornell University study suggests that consuming apples may reduce the incidence and number of breast cancer tumours.

Researchers fed rats with a known mammary carcinogen either whole apple extract or a control extract and mammary tumours were reduced by 17-44% in the rats fed the human equivalent of one to six apples a day. Researchers credit the additive and synergistic effects of phytochemicals in apples for inhibiting cancer cell growth.

Consumers may gain more significant health benefits, they say, by eating more fruits and vegetables and whole grain foods rather than taking costly dietary supplements, which do not contain the same array of balanced, complex components.