Brianna Elliott, MS, RD, LD – OAM Nutrition Services Coordinator
Hannah Johnson – 2018 Dietetic Intern (Iowa State)
Whether you eat them fresh, blended in a fruit smoothie, warm them on the grill or add them to your favorite peach cobbler recipe, peaches are loved year round. Peaches are generally harvested late June through August, making them a summer favorite! Known for their fuzzy texture and juicy flesh, peaches are nutrient-packed, giving you even more reasons to love them.
August is National Peach Month, and to celebrate we are sharing what we love most about this delicious fruit, including its health benefits and a refreshing recipe to inspire you to use them.
Health Benefits of Peaches
Peaches are high in a variety of vitamins, minerals and antioxidants:
- Vitamin C helps keep our immune system functioning properly and is also involved in collagen formation. Collagen is needed to build healthy skin, muscles and bones. Vitamin C also helps our body absorb iron from foods.
- Vitamin A helps to reduce the risk of age-related macular degeneration, which is a leading cause of blindness.
- Beta-Carotene is an antioxidant that boosts immune system health and reduces the risk of cancer and other chronic illnesses.
- Potassium is an electrolyte that helps keep our blood pressure under control and also helps coordinate movement of our muscles and nerves.
- Fiber keeps our digestive system running smoothly and promotes fullness (make sure to eat the skin of your peaches to reap this benefit!).
Tips for the Most Flavorful Peach
- Choose peaches with firm, fuzzy skins that yield to gentle pressure (this means they are ripe!). Also, peaches with vibrant colors and tones have the best flavors.
- Smell is the best indicator of how flavorful your peach will be. If it is fragrant with a “peachy” smell, that’s a good sign.
- Keeping peaches in a brown bag speeds their ripening process.
Looking for some recipe inspiration? Why not try this yummy peach salsa?