An Apple A Day
Written by: Kathy Best, July 14, 2018
We all know that old saying, “An apple a day keeps the doctor away.” While that might not be completely true, as there are many factors that determine our level of health, eating an apple a day can have tremendous benefits. Apples contain quercetin, a plant chemical, or phytochemical, which has anti-inflammatory and anti-cancer properties. The pectin in their skin is a soluble fiber that can reduce bad cholesterol levels and help prevent colon cancer. According to research, adults who eat apples regularly have less abdominal fat, smaller waste lines and lower blood pressure. Pectin fiber also promotes good digestive bacteria that can help slow weight gain, reduce blood-sugar swings and keep you feeling full longer. The apple peel contains phytochemicals that fight disease, reduce oxidative stress, help repair genetic mutations, stimulate the pancreas to discharge more insulin and the insulin receptors to absorb more glucose into cells. This prevents an abundance of free glucose wreaking havoc on your body. Apples contain potassium, which can aid in preventing fluid retention, vitamin K and vitamin C. They are flavonoid rich, which supports a healthy heart and lungs. Studies have linked a reduced risk of certain cancers, obesity, heart disease, asthma, diabetes and Alzheimer’s disease with regular consumption of apples. Apples are a great pre or post workout food due to their highly available natural, beneficial sugars that provide instant energy. Research has also shown that diets which incorporate the peel have higher levels of healthy fatty acids and antioxidants than diets that dispose of peel. According to California State University, consuming apples improves age related mental decline, bone density, lung function, digestive health, and weight management. A high fiber diet is also linked with better elimination health, eye, brain, and immune system function, Apples are also a good source of the mineral boron, which helps prevent osteoporosis, aids in sex hormone development and building muscles. Now you know how many benefits apples can provide. Next time you need a quick snack, do yourself a favor and grab an apple.
If eating raw apples gets a little boring you can change things up by slicing an apple up, sautéing it lightly and sprinkling it with some ground cinnamon, chopped medjool dates and some chopped walnuts or pecans.