Did you know apples had these health benefits and fun statistics?
Grown in almost every state of the US with Washington being the most famous
Was given as pay to teachers
Americans eat 120 per year
Reduces heavy metals in the body
Has an aroma that can lower blood pressure – just by smelling it
Apples taste amazing and have so many benefits for you! With over 7000 varieties of apples this ancient fruit has been shared around the globe as a gift of honor to royalty and a prescription of medicine to the poor.
I remember traveling with our friends and relatives to the apple orchards in the coolness of an autumn day anxious and ready for fun. As soon as we found the perfect place in the orchard everyone was busy seeing who could fill their bags with apples first. While all this activity was going on I would find the best place to do what I do best – test the crop. Well someone had to make sure these were truly good. Sure enough when my family found me my face and arms were covered with sticky sweet juice. “The testing is done - these are truly ready for picking.”
Value beyond compare…
We have all been tempted by this sticky sweet fruit but did you also know they are very nutrient dense? Apples have 3 forms of fiber in them; insoluble, soluble and pectin that are higher than almost every other food – especially fruits. This fiber can manage blood sugar, promote fat loss, improve digestion, remove toxins such as heavy metals and mercury and cleanse the liver.
A huge benefit, for those wanting to lose weight or maintain a healthy weight, is that apples are highly satisfying to the appetite which allows people to eat less. Research has shown that pectin, which is in high concentration in apples, slows digestion keeping food in the stomach longer.
The study showed that those who ate fruit with the pectin in it reported having little sense of hunger for 4 hours, while those who drank juice without the fiber and pectin were hungry much sooner. So, whether you grab an apple as a snack or serve it as a delicious dessert, you’ll be cleansing your body and trimming your waistline at the same time.
Varieties bring goodness…
In my younger years I rarely reached beyond our 4 main apples: Red Delicious, Golden Delicious, Fuji or Granny Smith. But in the last 10 years my reach now goes to the Gala, Jonagold, Braeburn, Winesap and Ginger Gold. My top two favorites are the Fuji and the Braeburn. I love firm crisp and sweet apples. Create a sumptuous flavor by combining two or more apples in pies and sauce. After this foodie experiment you will probably agree – store bought sauce and pies don’t add up to the delicious flavor you created.
Savor the flavor…
While apples are in their prime season in the fall with proper planning and cooking techniques we can enjoy the harvest all year long. Keep apples in a cool place away from moisture, heat and light. You may remember older relatives keeping apples in the cellar to last all year. Since cellars are a rarity today here are other options.
Make your own sauce – so simple – a must try. See Healthy Treasures for delicious apple recipes.
Dehydrate the slices – perfect for lunches, hiking, snacks and can be rehydrated to make pies and other recipes. Dried (dehydrated) apples keep for years if kept in a dry container. See Dehydrators here.
Prepare pies now and freeze. I usually make at least 2 pies per year by slicing the apples, adding in the dry ingredients: flour, cinnamon, sugar (sucanat) and placing all this in a freezer zip lock bag. Then when I want a pie I just thaw the bag and put directly into a pie shell and bake!
When looking for a healthy alternative to a sweet treat– try slicing an apple and putting it into a bag with freshly ground flaxseed and cinnamon. Toss and enjoy. Now your hormones will join in and bring satisfaction, happiness and a slimmer waistline.
Apples are a God-given gift of satisfaction and delight wrapped in its red, red-orange, yellow, golden or green package. Enjoy and give thanks.