How Do You Like Them Apples?

It’s that time of year again. No, I’m not talking about pumpkin spice lattes. I am reminding you that this is the season when apples are back in best form. Apples are a great high-fiber food and since being recommended eating daily have stood the test of time to lower inflammation, aid in weight management and improve heart health. But that’s not all they are good for.

Apples are a major source of Vitamin C, K, B6, and riboflavin, and minerals like potassium, copper, manganese, and magnesium. Apples are great at combating anemia since they are a great source of iron. They have beneficial antioxidants like quercetin, catechin, phloridzin and chlorogenic acid. They combat free radicals with phenols, flavonoids and carotenoids. The phytonutrients contained in apple pulp and skin have a high level of healthy fatty acids. A single apple is only about 90 calories and contains 4 grams fiber, about one sixth of the daily recommendation. I know these may be just a lot of words, but they are very good words.

There is a specific type of fiber found in apples called pectin, and it helps lower cholesterol levels naturally. Pectin is a regulator of sugar and helps to clean the blood and digestive tract.

The soluble fiber in apples binds to fatty substances in the digestive tract and helps to eliminate waste and is a natural diuretic with a laxative effect, helping combat bloating and water retention.

The flavonoids in apples improve insulin sensitivity, which can help prevent diabetes and also prevents weight gain. Apples help prevent strokes, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, diverticulosis and hypertension. They are natural sources of boron, a mineral that is important for building strong bones and helping to prevent osteoporosis.

The antioxidant phytonutrients reduce the impact of free radicals in the eyes and helps to prevent macular degeneration, cataracts, and glaucoma. Apples also help with dental issues because they stimulate the secretion of saliva that reduces the ability of bacteria to multiply and grow in your mouth. The fiber also helps clean the teeth and gums, so, bonus.

Apples can be a great way to boost your energy level both before and after working out because of their quick-releasing natural sugars. Apples also increase the levels of acetylcholine in the brain, which helps with concentration and memory. They also help to stop the gradual breakdown of dopamine-producing nerve cells, which can be an underlying cause of Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s disease.

Apples are a high alkaline fruit that has the ability to quench your thirst and hydrate cells. They are a major detoxifier and contain malic and tartaric acids that removes impurities from the liver and gallbladder. They are also the base for fermented health-promoting apple cider vinegar that improves immunity.

Because of fungi that are prevalent in apple trees, you should stick to the organic apples. Some brands have so much pesticide residue that apples are often listed on the “Dirty Dozen” list of most chemically sprayed fruits.  If you are on the FODMAP diet or strictly watching your sugar, you should limit the apples you consume. Otherwise, go at it. There is hardly a food out there with more benefits. And you thought it was just a fruit.

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