Does really a famous quote apple a day keeps doctor away? What are the benefits of the most popular worldwide fruit? The best way to keep yourself healthy is to consume fresh vegetables and fruits. What better option do we have in these cold winter days, except a fresh apple?
They are easy to store and transport, and as a result, are typically available year. In this article we’ll explore how apples may benefit health and the best types for baking versus munching straight off the core.
A medium of apple, provides about 95 calories, 0 gram fat, 1 gram protein, 25 grams carbohydrate, 19 grams sugar (naturally occurring), and 3 grams fiber.
APPLES AND YOUR HEALTH
Apples are rich in phytochemicals – quercetin and pectin, both of which are credited for supplying apples with their health benefits.  Quercetin is a flavonoid, a type of naturally occurring plant chemical that has antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effects. Pectin is a type of soluble fiber that may help prevent constipation and have a modest effect on lowering LDL, the “bad” cholesterol. Pectin is also fermented by beneficial bacteria in the colon, which produces short chain fatty acids that may play a role in the prevention of chronic diseases, including certain cancers and bowel disorders.
Fresh, whole apples offer the most nutrients. Discarding the skin removes much of the fiber and the majority of flavonoids. Dehydrating or drying the apples removes vitamin C, which is predominantly in the flesh. In addition, sugar (along with extra calories) is often added to dried apples. Clear apple juice undergoes filtering and pasteurization, which removes most of the flavonoids and fibers.
Overall research shows a benefit when adding apples to the diet. The studies below looked at the health effects of apples in the diet over time, or examined the effects of specific phytochemicals in apples.
BEST WAY TO STORE
To prolong freshness, store in the refrigerator in the crisper drawer. They will usually remain fresh for at least 1-2 months, if not longer. Apples are a climacteric fruit, meaning that they continue to ripen after harvesting due to emitting a gas called ethylene. Cold temperatures slow down the production of ethylene. Even so, apples will still emit some ethylene when refrigerated and can speed the ripening of other produce stored nearby. Store apples in their own drawer apart from other produce to prevent this from happening. If stored at room temperature, the enzymes and ethylene gas in apples quicken ripening. They will last on your counter for about 1-2 weeks but the texture can change during this time
HOW TO SERVE
There are up to 100 varieties available. Check out local farms and farmers markets for more unusual heirloom varieties. Some are best for cooking and baking, and others are enjoyed raw for snacking. They range from sweet to tart, and may produce a hearty crunch or a light crispy bite.
What is the best time to enjoy fresh apple?
As a study shows, you should not eat an apple when you have an empty stomach. It may cause bloating and constipation. In a nutshell, the preferably best time to eat an apple is morning hours, usually after breakfast.
Prepared to enjoy it:
- Tart, mildly sweet apples with firm crisp flesh that don’t become mushy at high temperatures are best for baking: Jonagolds, Granny Smith, Honeycrisp, Melrose, Cortland, Braeburn.
- Juicy and sweet flavors are often chosen for eating: Gala, Red and Golden Delicious, Fuji, McIntosh. If you prefer tart over sweet, baking apples can certainly be eaten as well!
- Some fun ways to enjoy apples:
- Cut one apple into thin slices and spread with nut or seed butter.
- Enjoy a sweet/salty, crunchy/creamy combo by pairing apple slices with thin slices of cheddar cheese.
- Apple sandwich: Remove the center and seeds of an apple with a corer and slice the apple into rounds about a ½-inch thick. Spread one apple slice with nut or seed butter and sprinkle with granola or trail mix. Then place another apple slice on top.
- Oven-baked apple chips: Core apple and slice very thinly or with a mandoline. Place on a lightly greased baking sheet or parchment paper. Sprinkle with cinnamon. Bake at 225 degrees F for one hour (higher temperatures can burn the apples). Flip apple slices and bake for up to 1 hour more or until apple chips feel dry. Transfer to a cooling rack and let cool completely.
- Waldorf salad: Chop 2 large apples into small chunks and add to large bowl with ½ cup walnuts, 1 sliced celery rib, and ¼ cup raisins. Sprinkle with lemon juice. Prepare the dressing by combining ½ cup nonfat plain yogurt, 1-2 tablespoons mayonnaise, teaspoon of lemon zest, and pinch of pepper. Fold dressing into apple mixture and stir well.
- Apples with sweet potato– enjoy our winter brunch suggestion, if you have a busy week ahead.
APPLE JUICE AND APPLE CIDER ARE DIFFERENT!
Did you know?
- Cider is produced when raw apples are mashed and pressed to extract the liquid. It is not filtered and sold either pasteurized or unpasteurized. This causes cider to appear cloudy, as it contains pulp and sediment. It is more acidic and contains more flavonoids than apple juice.
- Apple juice has been filtered to remove solids and pasteurized so that it remains fresher longer. Sugar is sometimes added. During filtration, the tart and bitter flavors from the natural apple flavonoids may be removed, so apple juice typically has a uniform sweet flavor.
Try out our apple cider from one of the top producers:
Apple Vinegar Due Vittorie by Modena€5.70 – €9.00