An apple a day doesn't necessarily keep the doctor away. That's according to proverb-busting research that found daily apple eaters had just as many doctor visits as those who ate fewer or no apples.

The findings don't mean apples aren't good for you, but they do underscore that it takes more than just one kind of food to avoid illness. About one-third of the adults studied said they had no more than one doctor visit in the previous year; the remainder reported at least two visits. An analysis found apple eaters had slightly fewer visits than apple avoiders. But that difference disappeared when researchers considered weight, race, education and health insurance.

The proverb is thought to have originated in Wales in the 1800s. Apples were likely one of the few fruits that were available throughout the year, said Alice Lichtenstein, a Tufts University professor of nutrition science and policy.

Associated Press