Apples are one of the most popular and widely available fruits. They are a key member of the fruit and vegetable food group, the importance of which is emphasized by nutritionists.
While apples are not a major source of any one specific nutrient, they contain modest amounts of a number of the important nutrients. The relatively high potassium and low sodium ratio in apples is also significant in some cardiac and renal problems as well as in the diets for overweight persons.
Apples: Take a healthy bite
Eating a balanced diet and exercising regularly are the keys to good health. Eating at least two cups of fruit each day will help get you and your family on the path to a healthier lifestyle.
And apples, in all their flavorful varieties, fresh, frozen, canned, dried and 100 percent juice, prove that what’s good for you can taste good too.
Core facts and apple nutrition
- Apples don’t have fat, cholesterol or sodium, a plus for maintaining heart health.
- Apples do have lots of fiber—both soluble and insoluble kinds.
- Apples help maintain a healthy weight, providing just 80 calories per serving.
What ‘nutrition facts’ don’t tell you
- Apples are a healthy source of anti-oxidants, which help maintain normal cell function by protecting against free radical damage.
- Including apples in a diet rich in fruits and vegetables may reduce the risk of some types of cancer and other chronic diseases.
Easy ways to add apples to your day
- Stir some apple slices in your hot or cold breakfast cereal.
- Garnish a green salad with diced apple cubes for color and flavor—not to mention great nutrition.
- Snack on an apple for an afternoon energy boost—try a different variety every day of the week.
- Serve a side dish of applesauce with lunch or dinner.
- Quench your thirst with an apple juice spritzer—mix 100% apple juice with equal parts of seltzer water with ice.
- Substitute applesauce for oil in some baked goods to cut fat and calories.
What counts as a single serving?
- 1 medium apple (about the size of a tennis ball)
- 1/2 cup chopped, cooked or canned apple
- 4 ounces of 100% apple juice
- 1/2 cup applesauce
To peel or not to peel?
Actually, there’s no question here—whenever possible, don’t peel that apple. Two-thirds of the fiber, and many of the antioxidants, are found in an apple’s peel. Be sure to wash apples before eating.
All the juice and nothing but the juice
Juices that contain less than 100 percent apple juice will be called “juice beverages,” “juice cocktails” or juice drinks.” A 4 oz. serving of 100 percent apple juice counts as one USDA Dietary Guideline serving of fruit.
Apples—–Five a day!
The proverbial “apple a day” has long been described as a food that helps “keep the doctor away.” Apples and apple products contribute phytonutrients to the diet, compounds found naturally in plants, fruits and vegetables that help make apples good for you. Increasing fruit and vegetable intake is the most important step Americans can take to make healthy food choices and achieve better health.