Add Apples for Good Health

An apple a day keeps the doctor away, or so the old saying goes – and for once there might just be something to the old wisdom. Apples are packed with nutrition and will help keep everyone in your family healthy.

With so many varieties of apples to choose from, the hardest part might be picking your favorite. Luckily, you don’t have to! Although some apples are better for certain culinary uses, choosing an apple to munch on as a snack can provide a new taste every time as you try all the different types on the market.

The Nutrition in Apples

Apples provide a good source of Vitamin C as well as dietary fiber. They also offer small amounts of many other vitamins including B vitamins. As most of the vitamin content is found in the skin, it’s best to eat the apple with the skin, and to cook with the skin intact as often as possible.

Because they are high in fiber, apples will help to keep you full, preventing overeating and helping to keep a healthy diet on track.

How to Enjoy Apples

Apples are a perfect snack to eat fresh and raw, either whole or cut into slices. They also pair beautifully with a sprinkling of cinnamon, or a delicious vanilla yogurt dip. Apples are easily portable and make a wonderful addition to a bag lunch or just a quick snack. Sliced apples are great in tossed salads, especially with a slightly sweeter dressing, and make a tasty addition to a chicken salad sandwich. Try apple slices instead of potato chips as a side dish to any sandwich for a crunch that’s healthier and more flavorful too! Raw apples, once sliced, are subject to the process of oxidation, which causes the flesh to turn brown. Eat them right away, or simply toss them in a small amount of lemon juice to stop the oxidation process.

Apples can be cooked in many different ways, both for sweet desserts and also savory dinner dishes. Of course the apple pie is a famous American favorite, and with only a little sugar and spice, it can actually be one of the healthier pie choices you can make. Skip the pie crust in favor of a crumbly topping mixed with oats for an apple crisp instead to bring down the calorie content a little.

Apples are also a top choice for mixing with oatmeal, as they cook nicely into soft bites and work well with the brown sugar and cinnamon flavors often added to hot cereals. They can also be added to muffins and quick breads.

Applesauce is a favorite first food for babies and also a healthy snack for older kids. You can easily make your own at home, and it freezes well for later use. Applesauce is often paired with pork chops, and a homemade chunky applesauce will always beat anything that comes from a jar!

Apples also go great with sweet potatoes, carrots, rice and raisins, opening up a whole new world of side dish possibilities. There is much more you can do with apples than just slice and eat, so be creative and bring apples to the dinner table more often. Adding their sweet flavor will have kids asking for seconds!

An apple a day may not be enough to keep you healthy, but it sure does help, so make apples a regular part of your diet.

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