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Apples… Awesome To The Core

There is definitely a core of truth in the old adage “An apple a day keeps the doctor away”. Did you know that regularly biting into an apple can help prevent cancer and even help with weight loss? Nature’s perfect candy is endlessly versatile and touts a long list of health benefits. October is National Apple Month, so we have a variety guide and recipes for you plus plenty of reasons to bite into an apple today!

Selection Tips
Most of your favorite apples are in season right now, meaning you’ll get the most health benefits and the finest flavor. For the freshest, most delicious apples, make sure you buy local where possible. The shorter the time from orchard to fruit bowl, the better!

The selection of apples in a grocery store can be daunting. Which is tart and sweet? Which is better for pies or salads? Download this variety guide from the U.S. Apple Association and you’ll always get the apple that suits your palate and purpose.

Click to download a PDF version

Health Benefits
There is a long list of studies suggesting links between apple consumption and disease prevention. Here are just a few of the possible health benefits of apples:

  • Excellent source of dietary fiber. A French study found that diets with the highest total dietary fiber and nonsoluble dietary fiber intakes were associated with a significantly lower risk of several heart disease risk factors, including overweight, elevated waist-to-hip ratio, blood pressure, and cholesterol levels.
  • Healthy source of antioxidants, which have been linked to disease prevention.
  • May boost weight loss. Researchers from the State University of Rio de Janeiro found that overweight women who ate the equivalent of three apples or pears a day lost more weight on a low-calorie diet than women who didn’t add fruit to their diet.
  • A growing body of evidence from the University of Massachusetts-Lowell suggests that eating apples and drinking apple juice can be beneficial when it comes to improving brain health and diminishing symptoms of Alzheimer’s disease.
  • Quercetin, a flavonoid found naturally in apples, has been identified as one of the most beneficial flavonols in preventing and reducing the risk of pancreatic and prostate cancer.
  • A series of studies at Cornell University have evaluated the direct effects of apples on breast cancer prevention in animals. The more apples consumed, the greater the reduction in incidence or number of tumors among test animals.
  • Research from the UK reports that children of mothers who eat apples during pregnancy are much less likely to exhibit symptoms of asthma, including wheezing, at age 5.
  • Researchers from the University of Denmark have discovered that apples and apple products could give the health of your intestines as well as your immune system a boost – by increasing the numbers of good gut bacteria.

Allan Borushek, The Calorie King, reminds readers that for calorie control, it’s best to consume your apples (and other fruits) mainly in the fresh state rather than as juice. Juicing concentrates the sugars and calories.  Example: 2-3 fresh apples makes one 8-oz glass of apple juice.

Eating fresh fruit also preserves beneficial fiber that is largely discarded by most juicers. The fiber also has a filling effect and provides greater satiety which keeps hunger at bay.

Open this PDF for more information and sources.

Recipes

With thanks to the folks at the U.S. Apple Association whom have kindly supplied information and recipes for this post.