Fall is here!! Take advantage of apple picking season and pick up some fresh apples for a nutritious and delicious treat! We all know that an apple a day keeps the doctor away! Here are some health benefits of apples!!
1. High in Fiber: Apples are filled with soluble fiber (a medium apple has ~4-5 grams). This fiber has been shown to reduce intestinal disorders, including diverticulitis, and possibly some types of cancer.
2. Controls Blood sugar: Due to their fiber content, apples help control insulin levels by releasing sugar slowly into the bloodstream. Controlled insulin is the key to preventing fat storage.
3. Lower cholesterol: Pectin is a complex carbohydrate and soluble fiber found in apples. Pectin helps reduce cholesterol levels by binding with cholesterol in the gut, preventing its absorption in the blood stream.
4. Weight loss – an apple can have anywhere from 50-100 calories (depending on the size), and has no fat or sodium. The high fiber content in apples will help you stay full by slowing the passage of food from the stomach into the small intestines, increasing the feeling of satiety of fullness from such a small amount of calories.
5. Nutrient packed- Apples are full of healthy antioxidants, vitamins and minerals. Apples are a great source of Vitamin C, which is a powerful natural antioxidant. Consumption of foods rich in vitamin C helps the body develop resistance against infectious agents and scavenge harmful, pro-inflammatory free radicals from the body.
6. B vitamins- Apples are a good source of B-complex vitamins such as riboflavin, thiamin, and pyridoxine (vitamin B-6). Together these vitamins help as co-factors for enzymes in metabolism as well as in various synthetic functions inside the body.
7. Heart health- Apple also contains a small amount of minerals like potassium, phosphorus, and calcium. Potassium is an important component of cell and body fluids helps controlling heart rate and blood pressure.
8. Anti-Carcinogenic Properties- Studies suggest apples might even work to fight cancer. In fact, the average medium sized apple contains more cancer fighting antioxidants than a large dose of vitamin C. In addition, apples contain other cancer fighting agents, including phytochemicals and phytonutrients. Antioxidants fight cancer causing free radicals that damage healthy cells and promote the growth of cancerous cells.
Want an apple power snack recipe!? Let us know in the comments below!
Janaelle Humberd, Registered Dietitian, LDN
Certified Lifestyle and Weight Management Consultant / Health Coach