An Apple A Day: Apple’s Health Benefits
- Apples are very low on the GI index, but are also very filling, at only around 90 calories per medium apple.
- Beyond weight loss, the old saying “an apple a day” certainly had it right when it comes to health since apples contain a host of anti-aging, healing anti-oxidants.
- It turns out that the bulk of an apple’s incredibly healing compounds like quercetin (that can help clear arterial plaque formation) hang out in the peel — as do most vital anti-oxidants that form the red or green pigments giving apples their seductive color.
- Apart from quercetin, apples have much more to offer. Apparently, the carbohydrates in apples present in the flesh have potent anti-growth effects on tumors and cancer cells.
- When it comes to controlling hunger and type 2 diabetes, you can’t beat the humble apple’s ability because it has double action when it comes to leveling blood sugar: plenty of fiber and special polyphenols regulate your blood sugar and prevent spikes. In numerous studies, apples compete with other superfoods with their ability to decrease risk of chronic diseases such as cardiovascular disease, cancer, and asthma.
Great Ideas To Cook & Enjoy Apples
Apples are delicious raw but there are plenty of other ways to enjoy them.
- They make an excellent base for any vegetable smoothie. Apples will sweeten the mix and make blending easier since they are higher in water content. Blend apples with other superfoods like carrots, ginger, and kale.
- Upgrade the fiber content of your cheese and crackers and make this apple cheddar snack.
- Sweet apples and tangy cheese make a mouth-watering appetizer. Try these apple cheese crostini to serve at your next dinner party or cocktail event.
- Have an afternoon sweet tooth? Shave off 100+ calories by ditching your candy bar (or even some protein bars!) and replacing it with 1 apple cut into wedges, slathered with 1 tablespoon of peanut, cashew, or almond butter.
- Apples make the perfect dippers! Make this “deconstructed” cannoli dip by mixing 1 cup part-skim ricotta with 2 tablespoons chopped dark chocolate, and 1 teaspoon almond extract.
- Apple pie is delish but can really pack in the calories. Try my crockpot apples — a baked dessert under 200 calories that you can do mess-free in a crockpot. And download the free booklet to get all the crockpot apple variations.
- Baked sweet potatoes and apples are a lovely fall dish or a fresh way to serve sweet potatoes at your next Thanksgiving day feast.
- Add diced apple to your favorite salad recipe, and supersize the portion for days when you’re hungrier but don’t want overload on calories.
- Maybe you’re in the mood for a slightly sinful treat? Make this Cheddar Bacon Jalapeno stack with Gala or Honey Crisp apples. Core 1 apple (actually you can use any type). Cover a tray with parchment or coat with cooking spray. Alternate with 1 slice of crumbled, cooked bacon, chopped fresh jalapeno, and a deli slice of cheddar cheese, quartered (about 1/2 ounce). Bake at 400°F for 10 minutes until cheese is melted and the apples starts to brown. Serve immediately.
Toppings For Other Superfoods Such As Kale
Kale contains over 20 essential nutrients in high levels along with compounds that fight cancer, heart disease and diabetes. Here are 12 ways to top it:
Just add 2 tablespoons of golden raisins, crumbled blue cheese, grated Parmesan, pumpkin seeds, chopped smoked almonds, chopped gojis berries or 2 tablespoons of goji espresso sauce, chia seeds, grated cheddar, spicy salsa, pomegranate cayenne sauce, or kimchee.