8 Stunning Benefits & Uses Of Peaches 2022

Ellie Busby

Updated on - Written by
Medically reviewed by Dr G. Michael DiLeo, MD

benefits of peaches

Peach is a stone fruit that’s been around long before humans[1], and they haven’t changed much in millions of years. But what are the benefits of peaches? 

In fact, there are many, and you’ll miss out on health benefits[2] if you don’t eat this ancient fruit. Keep reading to discover eight incredible health benefits of eating peaches, plus some unusual uses of peaches (besides eating them) that you may not have thought of.

8 Amazing Health Benefits of Peaches

The health benefits of peaches range from protecting against breast cancer to fighting free radicals. These are 8 stunning health benefits of eating peaches you may not know.

  1. High in antioxidants
  2. Anti-inflammatory
  3. Protect from certain cancers
  4. Protect against cardiovascular disease
  5. Good source of fiber
  6. Food source of potassium
  7. Protect against type 2 diabetes
  8. Good for skin

Health Benefits of Peaches

Peaches can boost your health in many ways – from protecting against breast cancer to balancing your blood sugar (helping you burn fat), to even mitigating type 2 diabetes. Read on to discover eight incredible health benefits of eating peaches. 

High In Antioxidants

Peaches are high in antioxidants, such as vitamin C and polyphenols, and the peel is especially high[3]

Antioxidants such as vitamin C protect us from oxidative stress, which is associated with damaging our DNA and cells and–ultimately–aging. This is why a diet high in antioxidants can protect us from a range of chronic diseases, from heart disease to metabolic syndrome.

But you don’t even have to eat fresh peaches to get the benefits of extra antioxidants. Studies show[4] that peach juice can reduce oxidation in the body as fast as 30 minutes after drinking – with the effects remaining for one and a half hours. 

To get the benefits of peach antioxidants, eat a fresh peach with the peel or drink 250 ml of peach juice.

Anti-Inflammatory

Studies show[5] that the more portions of fruit you eat, the lower your C-reactive protein (CRP) levels – a blood marker of chronic inflammation.

Pro-inflammatory substances in our bodies include histamine, TNF-alpha, and IL-6. One study[6] found that an extract of peach seed can inhibit histamine release, which has a knock-on effect of lowering TNF-alpha and IL-6 levels.

Animal studies[7] also show that eating peaches can protect against the pro-inflammatory action of nicotine in smokers. The nicotine-treated mice who had eaten peach had lower inflammation levels in the lung, liver, and kidneys.

If you’re a smoker, or you have symptoms associated with high levels of inflammation, such as joint pain, gut issues, or muscle pain, try adding peaches to your diet. (Or better yet, quit smoking! But keep eating peaches.)

Protect From Certain Cancers

Peaches contain the antioxidant carotenoids lutein and zeaxanthin. Carotenoids have been studied a lot for their cancer-protective properties[8] due to their antioxidant potential.

Prostate Cancer

Lutein has especially high antioxidant potential. Recent studies[9] suggest that eating more sources of lutein may be associated with reduced prostate cancer risk. 

However, this may not be true in all cases. A high beta-carotene or lutein intake may be associated higher risk of prostate cancer in African-Americans, or those taking multivitamins.

Breast Cancer

Peaches also contain polyphenols such as caffeic acid, which cell-based studies have linked to being able to slow the growth of cancer cells[10] and breast cancer cells[11].

In fact, association studies[12] found that eating two portions of peaches or nectarines per week, alongside berries, can significantly reduce the risk of breast cancer in postmenopausal women.

So, if you’re aged over 50, or you have breast or prostate cancer, try eating more peaches to slow cancer growth and improve your overall health.

More importantly, be proactive; if you have a family history of these familial-type cancers[13], do it for that reason.

Protect Against Cardiovascular Disease

Peaches are high in flavonoids, which can protect against high cholesterol levels and may reduce the risk of death from cardiovascular disease[14]

Studies show[15] that those who eat more fruits high in flavonoids (such as peaches) tend to have lower “bad” cholesterol (LDL-C) levels, while those with the highest intake of anthocyanidins tend to have higher “good” cholesterol (HDL-C) levels. However, this association is only among women.

Moreover, animal studies[16] suggest that eating more peaches can lower angiotensin II levels, which can reduce blood pressure[17] and improve cardiovascular health.

If you have high blood pressure or abnormal cholesterol levels, add peach to your diet alongside other fruits and vegetables high in flavonoids.

Good Source of Fiber

Peaches are a good source of fiber[18] – including soluble and insoluble fiber. 

Fiber is important to feed your gut microbiome[19] and keep you healthy. It’s crucial for healthy bowel movements, digestion and gut health, and nutrient absorption. In fact, eating more dietary fiber is one of the best ways to overcome constipation[20].

But the benefits don’t stop at gut health. Large studies show that eating more dietary fiber can lower blood sugar, reverse type 2 diabetes[21], and lower cholesterol levels[22].

So, to get more fiber in your diet, try eating more peaches.

Food Source of Potassium

Potassium is listed as one of America’s “nutrients of concern” because most people don’t get enough from their diet. A variety of fruits and vegetables provide potassium, and peaches are one of the best sources[18].

Sodium and potassium need to be in balance for optimal health, but most people eat too much salt and not enough fruit and vegetables. Studies suggest[23] that high sodium but low potassium intake is associated with obesity. 

We know that too much salt contributes to high blood pressure, but studies even show[24] that increasing potassium intake (without changing sodium intake) lowers blood pressure. In fact, we have good evidence that increasing your potassium intake can lower your risk of stroke by up to 24%.

However, if you’re considering supplementing, getting potassium from natural sources is best because taking too much potassium via supplements[25] can increase your risk of arrhythmia or a heart attack.

So, if you have high blood pressure, consider eating more peaches alongside other fruits and vegetables.

Protect Against Type 2 Diabetes

Eating whole fruits, such as peaches, can even reduce your risk of type 2 diabetes[26].

Studies in rats show[16] that peach and plum juice can protect against a range of symptoms of metabolic syndrome, including high blood sugar, insulin resistance, leptin resistance, and high cholesterol levels. Human studies[27] corroborate this.

So, if you’re overweight, have diabetes, or your blood sugar tends to be too high, eating more peaches and other fruits could help reduce your risk of, or help manage, type 2 diabetes.

Good for Skin

Peaches even have benefits aside from eating them. We know that peaches contain substances that, when applied topically, can promote healthy skin.

For instance, studies show[28] that applying peach extract directly to the skin can improve skin function and moisture retention by increasing something called ceramides[29] on the skin surface. Moreover, the extract of peach flowers applied topically to the skin can also protect against sunburn and UVB damage[30].

But what about eating peaches? We don’t have any direct evidence, but we know that peaches are rich in carotenoids[31], and other fruits rich in carotenoids can protect your skin from damaging UV rays.

For example, studies show[32] that eating mango for up to 16 weeks significantly reduces the depth of wrinkles caused by UV damage. This may also explain the benefits of peaches for hair, too.

So, if you tend to have dry skin or are exposed to the sun a lot, try eating more fruits high in carotenoids such as peaches, or use a skin cream with peach extract.

Nutrition Facts

Peaches are a delicious summer fruit packed with nutrients and are an especially good source of vitamins C, A, and fiber. Plus, they’re low in anti-nutrients

One small peach[33] (approx. 2.5 inches in diameter, or weighing 130 g) provides

  • Calories: 51
  • Fat: 0.3 g
  • Sodium: 0 mg
  • Carbohydrates: 12.4 g
  • Fiber: 1.9 g
  • Sugars: 10.9 g
  • Protein: 1.2 g
  • Vitamin A: 20.8 mcg
  • Potassium: 247 mg
  • Vitamin C: 6.5 mg

Peaches also provide smaller amounts of other nutrients, including magnesium, B vitamins, and iron.

Are Peaches Good For You?

As you’ve already seen, this juicy fruit can have lots of health benefits when added to a healthy diet. But which type of peach is best for you?

Canned, Fresh, Or Frozen Peaches? You may think that fresh peaches are better for you, but that’s not always the case. 

Canned peaches have the same level of nutrients[34] as fresh. In fact, canned peaches have even more vitamin C and antioxidants than fresh peaches. However, if you choose canned peaches, make sure to go for one without added sugar.

Frozen fruits usually retain most of their nutrients. So, you can also buy frozen peaches if you don’t have access to fresh peaches. Or, freeze fresh peaches yourself.

How To Eat Peach?

You can eat peaches raw or cook them. Try adding them to

  • Muesli
  • Porridge
  • Salads
  • Desserts

Don’t Peel!

We recommend eating peaches with the peel wherever possible. Studies show that peach peel might be highest in antioxidants and best at reducing inflammation. 

One animal study[35] showed that consuming peaches with the peel had the best antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effects, preventing oxidative damage more than preserved (i.e., canned) peaches.

Actual measurements[36] have demonstrated the peel has 2-3 times the antioxidant potential as the “flesh” of the fruit.

Benefits Of Peach Juice

If you don’t have access to whole peaches fruits, go for peach juice to get the benefits of the nutrients and antioxidants – but you’ll miss out on the fiber.

As a last resort, there may also be some benefits of peach herbal tea or peach extract supplements.

Potential Side Effects 

A certain protein[37] in peaches is one of the main causes of food allergic reactions[38] alongside apples and hazelnuts, seen primarily in the Mediterranean. 

Symptoms of a peach allergy include a reaction in the mouth, skin symptoms (such as a rash), and rhinoconjunctivitis. If you get any of these symptoms shortly after eating a peach, you might be allergic and should avoid eating them.

Final Thought

Peaches are a great source of several essential nutrients and antioxidants, including vitamins C and E, carotenoids, potassium, and more. 

There are several health benefits of peaches. Eating more peaches, alongside other fruits and vegetables, can protect you from several age-related diseases, improve gut function, and may even reduce your risk of certain types of cancer.

Aim to eat a minimum of two peaches – either fresh or canned – per week to get the benefits. And don’t skip the peel!


+ 38 sources

Health Canal avoids using tertiary references. We have strict sourcing guidelines and rely on peer-reviewed studies, academic researches from medical associations and institutions. To ensure the accuracy of articles in Health Canal, you can read more about the editorial process here

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Ellie Busby

Written by:

Ellie Busby, MS, RDN

Medically reviewed by:

Michael DiLeo

Ellie Busby is a Registered Nutritionist (MSc, mBANT) and nutrition writer. She holds a bachelor's in Chemistry and a Masters in Nutrition. Ellie specializes in plant-based nutrition for health and fitness. She is also the Founder of Vojo Health, a personalized nutrition service based on genetic testing.

Medically reviewed by:

Michael DiLeo

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