When it comes to an easy, accessible way to keep your health on track, look no further than apples. They’re a smart, simple snack for almost any diet and that claim to fame is as old as the classic phrase “an apple a day keeps the doctor away.”
At one point or another, we’ve all recited this time-honored nudge toward a nutritious diet. It’s one of the main reasons we associate apples with keeping us healthy, wealthy and wise. But if that’s not enough for you, here are six reasons why the next snack you grab should be a crisp New York State apple to help you live a healthy lifestyle.
Today’s health fads come in high tech, blender-ized, super-juiced forms, but apples offer a simple alternative. Looking to shed a few pounds? Try apples. Apples are high in fiber and water and low in calories. The fiber and water fill you up while the low calories keep you lean. Hint: Try eating some apple slices before a meal to avoid overindulging on an unhealthy entrée.
Energy and Endurance
For the athletes in the building, energy and endurance are often the difference between success and heartbreak. Apples help with both. A flavonoid found in apples called quercetin can help boost endurance while the 20 grams of carbs per apple provide energy for any activity. Apples for the win!
Any family who’s ever packed a picnic knows the pain of cleaning up enough crumbs in the car to fill a sandbox. Couple that with some gummies stuck inside drink holders and the stains of snacks gone rogue and you have yourself a certified mess. Apples avoid all of that. Clean, portable and easy to pack, apples provide a snack that doesn’t battle back in the form of a food fight. Oh, and did we mention the inexpensive price tag? A whole bag of these sweets won’t break the budget.
Getting your head in the game isn’t an issue with this smart snack. Studies have shown that the juice from an apple may help preserve acetylcholine lowering the possibility of Alzheimer’s disease. It also proved to slow mental decline by reducing the reactive oxygen species that often harm the brain. In another study, researchers found that apples help restore memory. Simply put, apples are a perfect food for thought.
A Dutch study showed that an apple a day cut the dangerous effects of heart disease by 50 percent! For the go-getters of the bunch, two apples a day protected arteries from harmful plaque buildup. Apples contain a couple more scientific home runs in the form of soluble fiber and polyphenols like epicatechin. They may be hard to pronounce but just know that these healthy helpers lower blood cholesterol and blood pressure levels at the same time.
But Wait! There’s More
Apples contain antioxidants and anti-inflammatory compounds that promote stronger bone density. According to a study of more than 68,000 women, eating just a portion of a large apple every day helped lower the risk of asthma by 10 percent. Another study showed a link between plant compounds in apples lowering the risk of cancer. Finally, consuming a few apples a week has been linked to lowering the risk of type 2 diabetes by up to 28 percent. Add those up and it’s easy to see that the numbers don’t lie.
An apple a day truly does go quite a long way.