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Nutrition In Apple

When you get back home hungry and tired after a game of basketball with a bunch of friends  or a couple of laps in the pool, sinking your teeth into a crunchy juicy apple is far more satisfying than reaching for a soft drink or sucking on a candy bar. Apples are a convenient and tasty snack to carry around in your bag, something you can munch on even while you are on the go. More than seven thousand varieties of apples are grown around the world, with about 2500 varieties in the US alone. From applesauce as weaning food for babies to apple cider that bartenders love to use in exotic cocktails, from crunchy chunks of apples in salads to smooth apple puree to add tartness, texture and flavor to your sorbet, apples are truly versatile fruits that can be used imaginatively in hundreds of ways. Apart from that, apple health benefits are so many, that you can’t go wrong when picking an apple.
Combining nuts and apples with your salad makes your bowl a well-balanced satisfying meal in itself.

Nutritional Benefits Of Apple

  • Energy: Apple nutrition provides your body with just the right amount of complex carbohydrates to ensure that your energy levels are sustained all through the day.
  • Digestion: Among the well-known apple nutrition facts, the presence of both soluble and insoluble fiber in the fruit is what makes it an ideal ally in the process of digestion.
  • Cholesterol: The soluble fiber helps to prevent the build-up of cholesterol in the lining of blood vessels and thus protects us from heart disease. The insoluble fiber acts as a cleansing agent, moving food easily along the digestive tract. It is not just the nutritional value of apples that makes them a popular choice for desserts and salads, people relish the taste, flavor, and texture it imparts to a dish.
  • Heart: Civilizations around the world, over centuries have recognized the importance of apple nutritional content and included the fruit as part of their everyday food. In America apple cider refers to the non-alcoholic apple juice and the fermented juice is called ciderjack or hard cider. With an alcohol content of 8%, apple cider is said to be good for the heart like red wine, and it is often a preferred choice over beer for its delicate mellow flavor and rich taste. 

Nutrients In Apple

Weight watchers love apples because they are packed with the goodness of vitamins, minerals, complex carbohydrates, and dietary fiber, which makes these fruits a filling food even while keeping the calorie count low. With just 50 calories from 100gm of apples or about 80 calories from a whole medium-sized fruit, dieters can safely snack on apples without fear of exceeding their calorie limit. More importantly, apple nutrients like vitamin C, beta carotene, B complex, potassium and flavanoids help the body stay fit and healthy. Phytochemicals in apples boost antioxidant activity, and thereby reduce the damage to cells from free radicals and prevent the growth of tumors.

Other nutrients in apples are:

  • The flavanoid phloridzin and the trace element boron which help to make bones stronger by adding bone density.
  • Pectin, a soluble fiber present in the fruit, is a source of galacturonic acid. This is useful for patients with diabetes since it prevents blood sugar level swings and reduces the need for insulin in the body. Dieters can enjoy the fruit for its taste and flavor more after knowing about the rich apple nutrients content. The fruit also does not add to the fat, cholesterol, or sodium levels in the body.
  • Nutrients in apple skin like polyphenols are produced in the fruit as its natural sunscreen to protect itself against harmful UV rays from the sun. So these polyphenols act as antioxidants, reducing oxidation of fats, which, in turn, leads to a healthier cardiovascular system. These antioxidants are also known to help minimize risk of lung cancer and asthma attacks.
  • Quercetin is a flavanoid in apples that slows down the digestion of carbohydrates by acting on the enzymes used for breaking them down into simple sugars, a slow down which helps to regulate blood sugar levels.

Calories In Apple

Apples are a favorite food of weight watchers because the nutritional benefits and satiating value derived from eating the fruit far outweigh the calories in apple. It must be remembered that apple calorie information may vary depending on the variety of the fruit chosen, the size, and ripeness.

Calories In Gala Apple:

Calories in a gala apple may be just 74 for a serving of 154 grams, whereas for the same serving, calories in a Fuji apple may be 80. With their delicate aromatic flavor, Fuji apples are great for making applesauce, particularly for babies. The yellowish green color, with its deep pink speck highlights and fragrance, makes it an ideal addition for salads made from vegetables or fruits.

Calories In Pink Lady Apple:

Though more popular than Fuji apples, calories in a pink lady apple of medium size are about the same, around 72. If you prefer the tart taste rather than the sweet one, green apples like Granny Smith or red apples like PaulaRed are best for you.

Calories In Green Apple:

Calories in a green apple are much lower, like that for a medium-sized apple is just 36 compared to 80 for a golden delicious apple of the same size.

Calories In Medium, Large, Small Apple:

Nutritional content and calories will also vary depending on the size of the fruit: calories in a small apple may be just 77, while calories in large apple, weighing more than 200 grams may go up to 116.

One medium sized raw, fresh apple’s nutrition is broken into approximately:-

  • Carbohydrates – 21 grams
  • Calcium – 10 Mg
  • Calories – 81
  • Phosphorous – 10 Mg
  • Potassium – 159 Mg
  • Vitamin C – 8 Mg
  • Iron - .25 Mg
  • Vitamin A - 73 IU
  • Folate – 4 Mcg
  • Dietary Fiber – 4 grams
Remember, calories in a medium apple may be low, but once you add flour, sugar, and butter and bake it as an apple pie, the calorie count shoots up to 350 per slice.

Uses Of Apple

  • Apples like Winesap, Suncrisp, Rome, and Melrose are ideal for cooking, especially pies. For enjoying the nutritional goodness of apples during off season, the easiest option is to sun dry the slices of apple and store them.
  • Making applesauce, apple butter, and apple jelly are other ways for preserving the fruit for use later.
  • Using sweet apples like gala or Fuji and pectin for apple jelly, you can cut down on the amount of sugar used or replace the sugar with sweet fruit juices.
  • The sweet aroma of the apples makes it a treat for children.
  • Eaten cooked or raw, in form of juice, applesauce or crisp slices, apples should be a part of every serving of vegetables and fruits that one eats as part of one’s regular meals during the day.

Best Way To Eat Apple:

A couple of apples sliced and neatly arranged on a plate is an inviting healthy snack that will satiate any hungry kid looking for something to munch on before dinner is ready. Apple nutritional benefits apart, its versatility is what makes the fruit so popular around the world. It is best to eat apples with their skin, whole, sliced or quartered, anyway it is convenient. You can even add apple chunks or slices to a bowl of salad to make it more colorful. Dieticians, who are aware of apple’s nutritional composition, recommend that we eat them with their skin because most of the vitamin C contained in them lies just below the skin. Eating the fresh fruit with the skin is far more beneficial than eating applesauce or drinking the juice. If you don’t like the skin, eating the peeled fruit is still far better nutritionally than opting for a bar of chocolate or a piece of apple pie.
Submitted on September 20, 2011