An Apple A Day
Did you know?
-Apples can help lower LDL cholesterol
-Apples Can Help Shorten Colds
-Apples Can Help Keep You Hydrated
-Apples Can Help Improve Your Brain Power
An Apple A Day…
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When I was a little kid, I can remember being told by my mom, my teachers, my elders: “an apple a day keeps the doctor away!” At the time, I didn’t quite comprehend the reasoning for this statement, but now that I’m a big kid, it makes a bit more sense. I mean, come on, you’ve heard it before! Sometimes we can even get away with just saying “an apple a day…” to someone and he or she will completely get it. The saying is both catchy and clever! But why does the saying even exist? Well, I’m not a history buff… so maybe a better question would be what validity is there in the statement “an apple a day keeps the doctor away?”
Here are the top reasons for why apples help to keep the doctor away and more importantly why apples are wonderful and quite possibly one of my favorite fruits.
Apples Can Help Lower LDL Cholesterol
Firstly, according to an article published by Harvard Medical School2, apples are rich in pectin which is a type of soluble fiber that lowers LDL cholesterol (the cholesterol that we don’t want a lot of in our bodies because having high levels of LDL can lead to plaque buildup in your arteries and can result in heart disease and stroke1).
Apples Can Help Shorten Colds
Another reason for why apples are just so great is their abundance of vitamin C. Vitamin C is a water-soluble vitamin that is necessary for normal growth and development. Although studies have not concluded that vitamin C can help prevent a cold, studies have shown that people who consume vitamin C regularly might have slightly shorter colds or somewhat milder symptoms3. Although apples are not as high in vitamin C as the orange, a medium sized apple contains roughly 14% of your daily recommended intake.
Apples Can Help Keep You Hydrated
Not only do apples pack a punch in the fiber category, which helps to keep you fuller longer, but apples also can help provide a decent level of hydration in terms of hydrating foods. Of the 184 grams of a medium sized apple, 156 grams are due to water weight4. So if you’re ever on the run and need something hydrating, filling, and satisfying, reach for an apple instead of an energy bar.
Apples Can Help Improve Your Brain Power
If you weren’t sold on the benefits of apples by the aforementioned reasons, what if I told you apple have also been linked to helping improve your overall brain power? That’s right. According to research shared by Good Housekeeping, apples boost the production of acetylcholine, “a chemical that transmits messages between nerve cells, apples are now thought to keep your brain sharp as you age, enhance memory, and potentially lessen the odds of getting Alzheimer’s disease…”
Below you will find the nutritional information for a medium sized apple
(3″ diameter) (182g)
|% Daily Value*|
|Total Fat 0.3 g||0%|
|Saturated fat 0.1 g||0%|
|Polyunsaturated fat 0.1 g|
|Monounsaturated fat 0 g|
|Cholesterol 0 mg||0%|
|Sodium 2 mg||0%|
|Potassium 195 mg||5%|
|Total Carbohydrate 25 g||8%|
|Dietary fiber 4.4 g||17%|
|Sugar 19 g|
|Protein 0.5 g||1%|
|Vitamin A||1%||Vitamin C||14%|
|Vitamin D||0%||Vitamin B-6||5%|
|*Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.|
Want a to jazz up your freshly cut apple? Try my go-to nut butter dip!
This recipe is super easy and the perfect companion to a sweet, crisp apple.
Nut Butter Dip
1/2 cup (113g) plain Greek yogurt
2 Tbsp of your favorite nut butter (peanut, almond, cashew, etc.)
1/4 – 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1 packet Stevia (or 1/2 Tbsp honey)
Stevia is great if you’re looking for a little extra sweetness, without the extra sugar or artificial ingredients. Stevia is an all-natural herbal product with centuries of safe usage by native Indians in Paraguay and is approved by the FDA. (to read more on Stevia, click here)
By the way, I love my apple slicer. The apples are always so perfectly cut, I never have to worry about getting seeds in my slices, and it saves me time. Oh, and did I mention how cheap it is on Amazon? Click here to see for yourself. 🙂
Have you read my post All About Nuts? Click the linked text to read up on the nutritional benefits of 10 of the top favorite nuts (and legumes) on the market!
Want to read more about added sugars? Visit my post titled The Other Names For Added Sugars.
Thanks for joining me again this week, I’m glad you decided to come back. If you’re new to the blog, welcome! Visit my Start Here page to get the low down on this whole Bent On Better thing.
If you have any questions you’d like addressed personally, feel free to email me at [email protected].
“11 Foods That Lower Cholesterol – Harvard Health.” Harvard Health. N.p., n.d. Web. 22 Sept. 2015.1
“LDL and HDL: “Bad” and “Good” Cholesterol.” Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 16 Mar. 2015. Web. 20 Sept. 2015.2
“Vitamin C: MedlinePlus Medical Encyclopedia.” U.S National Library of Medicine. U.S. National Library of Medicine, n.d. Web. 20 Sept. 2015.3
“Nutrition Facts.” And Analysis for Apples, Raw, with Skin [Includes USDA Commodity Food A343]. N.p., n.d. Web. 20 Sept. 2015.4