Last month I was asked to promote Great British Apples as not only a great ingredient in recipes, but also as a healthy snack.
Funnily enough, one of my first blog posts, which I deleted when I moved from .wordpress.com to my self-hosted blog, was about apples. My original idea for Healthy & Psyched was to pick a fruit or vegetable every week to tell you about. I had just finished an online course in Nutritional Therapy and was excited to share my new knowledge. But then I realised that takes A LOT more research to write the blog posts and I just don’t have time. Plus, there are a lot of great resources on the web already, for example I like Mercola, Organic Facts and Medical News Today.
However, I have the old blog post saved on Word so I can share with you my thoughts on apples and 5 reasons that they’re fantastic.
In my original post I said “I’ve got to be honest; I’m not brilliant at eating apples. I probably get through about 2- 3 a week. My mum has one every day with lunch, but most of the time I’m after something more satisfying after my meal like dark chocolate. However, writing this post has reminded me that apples offer a host of health benefits and I could try harder to incorporate them more into my weekly meals and snacks.” This, funnily enough, is still true today!
I also shared…
5 reasons apples are fantastic
- They’re convenient. Apples are possibly one of the best grab-and-go snacks. It’ so easy to pop one in your bag if you know you’re going out for the day and will probably to get peckish. It’s unlikely to get crushed (compared to a banana or soft fruit) and will be okay if you forget it’s there for a few days!
- Apples are high in fiber. One medium apple with the skin on contains 15-20% of your daily fiber needs in the form of soluble and insoluble fiber. Fiber plays a role in hunger regulation and can help you feel satiated. For example, one study found that those who ate an apple before their lunch consumed less food than those in the control condition. I wouldn’t go eating an apple before every meal, but I do sometimes eat one if I know I’ll be having late dinner and don’t want to get so hungry that I end up eating my portion and what I was meant to be saving for tomorrow’s lunch as well!
- They keep the doctor away! Apples have a unique combination of vitamins, minerals, and phytochemicals (biologically active compounds). Most notably, vitamins A, C, E, K and B vitamins as well as potassium and magnesium. These vitamins help keep our skin healthy, our circulatory systems functioning and immune system on top form. Obviously, apples won’t literally keep the doctor away, but they can form a great part of a healthy diet.
- Apples can help to regulate your blood sugar. This helps us to avoid blood sugar spikes followed by dips, which can make you feel hungry and crave sweet food- which is not what you want!! Apple polyphenols slow down the action of enzymes which break down carbohydrates and the rate at which glucose is absorbed by the digestive tract.
- There’s an apple for everyone. There are an incredible number of apples in Britain which come in so many tastes, textures, colours and sizes. My favourites are a crunchy Gala, or sweet red Jazz – I always try and pick the darker red ones because I like those the best. You can find your perfect apple by taking the quiz on the Great British Apples website.
My favourite apple recipes
Usually I just munch an apple on the go, or if I’m at home I cut it up and sprinkle cinnamon on it. I also like to grate apples and make homemade apple sauce/ puree to as a sweetener in recipes.
Recently I tried to make raw apple ‘doughnuts’.
They were really simple and fun to make. Just cut the apple horizontally, remove the core with a cookie cutter then spread on your favourite nut butter or even yogurt. Then add on toppings galore, such as hemp seeds, desiccated coconut and cacao nibs.
6 amazing apple recipes to keep you Healthy & Psyched
What’s your favourite apple and do you ever think about which country it was grown in?