January’s Superfood: Apples

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January’s Superfood: Apples

January's Superfood - Apples

The famous “Apple-A-Day” catch phrase is no joke! Although often overlooked as an "ordinary fruit" and not as nutritionally packed as the pomegranate or berry, apples are truly nutritional powerhouses. Apples contain a nice amount of soluble fiber (4 grams per medium apple) for a modest amount of calories (95), which makes them a filling, sweet, and crunchy snack.

Another benefit: Apples also are a good source of immune-boosting vitamin C, providing 14 percent of the daily value. This is a huge benefit during this germy time of year.

An interesting study performed by Finnish researchers studying dietary data collected over 28 years from 9,208 men and women concluded that frequent apple eaters had the lowest risk of suffering strokes compared with non-apple eaters. So now eating an apple a day not only helps with lung and heart health, but also with stroke prevention. Apples also contain and are the best fruit source of a chemical called quercetin, which has been found to help increase oxygen delivery in the lungs and helps with endurance in athletes.

Researchers are continuing to find more and more phytonutrients (a.k.a. the good stuff) in apples that are beneficial to our health, and none of these chemicals work alone.  They all seem to work together synergistically, which is why eating fruits and veggies has the most health benefit.

Apples are the best fast food—just grab one and go. Try apples dipped in peanut butter for a snack, chopped apples in a salad, or the recipe below for crock-pot applesauce...and opt for organic when you can.

Crock-Pot Applesauce

Ingredients:

  • 8 medium apples (Rome are great when they are in season)
  • Juice of 1 lemon (medium to large)
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 1/2 cup water
  • Sugar is not necessary, but if you want you can add 2-4 Tbsp. of organic brown sugar, agave, or honey (omit honey if your child is under 12 months of age).

Instructions:

1. Peel, core, and chop the apples.  (If you peel the apples, you will not need to use a food mill…but you lose the fiber!)

2. Add the sugar, lemon juice, and cinnamon stick.

3. Set crock-pot to low and cook for 6 hours. Stir the apples occasionally—apples will slowly become a delicious applesauce.

4. Remove the cinnamon stick and either mash or put through a food mill if the skins were left on to help break down the apple skin

5. Can and process as you would other recipes or keep refrigerated up to 3 weeks.

Enjoy!

Be Well, Be NutritionWise.

~ Nicole Meadow, MPN, RD of NutritionWise

This post is solely for informational purposes. It is not intended nor implied to be a substitute for medical advice. Before undertaking any course of treatment or dietary changes, you should seek the advice of your physician or other health care provider.

We aim to provide you with the most honest and credible information possible. This article was reviewed for accuracy by The Honest Team and was written based on trusted sources that are linked at the bottom of the article.

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