The phytonutrients, flavonoids and polyphenols in apples work together to help regulate your blood sugar. The pectin in apples seems to help lower the body’s need for insulin.
Total cholesterol and LDL-cholesterol are both decreased with consumption of apples. It is important to eat the whole apple to gain the cardiovascular benefits. A recent study reported in Stroke: Journal of the American Heart Association, found that a high intake of apples, pears and other white-fleshed fruits and vegetables reduced the risk of stroke by 52 percent.
Apples can provide satiety. Researchers found that people eating whole apples reported less hunger than people eating applesauce or drinking apple juice. When adults ate one medium-sized apple about 15 minutes before a meal they reduced the amount of calories they ate by 15%.
Apples consumption is linked with a decreased risk of asthma and lung cancer risk. In some recent studies apples helped reduce the symptoms caused by asthma. Preliminary results show that eating apples can be beneficial in preventing other cancers too.
Apples may help protect post-menopausal women from osteoporosis and actually help increase bone density.
Apples may reduce your risk of Alzheimer’s disease and slow cognitive decline seen in normal aging.
With so many varieties of apples you can choose sweet, tart or in-between. The free fact sheet from Ohio State University Extension “Selecting, Storing, and Serving Ohio Apples,” available at http://ohioline.osu.edu can provide information on best choices for different recipes. Store apples in the refrigerator (32 to35° F) in a perforated plastic bag and wash apples before eating or using in a recipe by rinsing in cool water.
A few ideas for serving apples:
- Add chopped apple to your breakfast oatmeal.
- Add sliced or chopped apples to your green or fruit salads.
- Microwave an apple for a quick baked apple for dessert or snack.
- Braise a chopped apple with red cabbage.
- Serve sliced apples with peanut butter or cheese.
How do you serve apples?