Vibrant Health is celebrating Johnny Appleseed Day on Friday, September 25. Our employee appreciation committee is providing locally grown apples for all staff.
You’ve heard, “An apple a day will keep the doctor away.” While it will certainly take more than a daily apple to keep you healthy, it is a step in the right direction. Apples are delicious, easy to carry for snacking, low in calories, a natural mouth freshener, and they are still very inexpensive.
Apples are a source of both soluble and insoluble fiber. Soluble fiber such as pectin actually helps to prevent cholesterol buildup in the lining of blood vessel walls, thus reducing the incident of atherosclerosis and heart disease. The insoluble fiber in apples provides bulk in the intestinal tract, holding water to cleanse and move food quickly through the digestive system.
It is a good idea to eat apples with their skin. Almost half of the vitamin C content is just underneath the skin. Eating the skin also increases insoluble fiber content. Most of an apple’s fragrance cells are also concentrated in the skin and as they ripen, the skin cells develop more aroma and flavor.
There are hundreds of varieties of apples on the market today, although most people have only tasted one or two of the most popular such as Red Delicious or Granny Smith. Apples can be sweet, tart, soft and smooth or crisp and crunchy, depending on the one you choose. There is an apple to suit almost everyone’s taste, so why not choose one. Have an apple today! Apple Nutrition Facts (*One medium 2-1/2 inch apple, fresh, raw, with skin)
Carbohydrate 21 grams
Dietary Fiber 4 grams
Calcium 10 mg
Phosphorus 10 mg
|Iron .25 mg|
Sodium 0.00 mg
Potassium 159 mg
Vitamin C 8 mg
Vitamin A 73 IU
Folate 4 mcg
*The nutritional value of apples will vary slightly depending on the variety and size.
Source: USDA Nutrient Data Laboratory — Apple
One Great Little Food Mother Nature was at her creative best when she came up with apples. They’ve got it all: taste, looks, and nutritional aspects that just won’t quit.
- Apples have no fat, cholesterol or sodium. Compare those stats to a bag of potato chips!
- An average apple contains only 80 calories. Compare that bottom line count to a piece of cake!
- Apples have five grams of fiber, 20% of the daily recommended fiber needs. That’s more than most cereals!
- Apples contain vitamins A, B1, B2, C, and Niacin; plus nutrients, Phosphorous Magnesium, Iron and Potassium. Apples are their own health food store!
- Applesauce is a fat free substitute when cooking and can be used in place of oil or shortening. In addition to being health, applesauce makes baked goods taste moist.
- When eaten as a snack, apples suppress hunger longer than junk foods and empty calories they contain. Apples are a great choice when dieting and trying to stave off hunger.
Did you know: The largest apple ever picked tipped the scales at an astonishing three pounds! To put this in perspective: that’s equivalent to about a half-gallon of milk. Imagine an apple with that much heft.
More fun apple facts for kids? Consider this:
- The nation’s first president, George Washington, pruned apple trees in his spare time.
- In Colonial times, the apple was better known as a “winter banana” or “melt-in-the-mouth.”
- The science of growing apples is pomology and the French word for apple is “pomme.”
- Apple harvests are still picked by hand.
- NYC’s moniker, “The Big Apple,” is tied into America’s love affair with jazz in the 1930’s and ’40’s.
Apples: By the Numbers
With 4,000 years behind them, it’s no wonder there’s an abundance of fun apple facts.
- To make a traditional 9-inch apple pie, you’ll need 2 pounds of apples.
- Worldwide, a remarkable 7,500 varieties of apples are grown.
- In the United States, a hearty 2,500 varieties can be found; though only 100 are grown for commercial purposes. The only apple native to North America is the Crabapple.
- Out of the 100 apple varieties grown, 15 comprise 90% of total production: Red Delicious, Gala, Golden Delicious, Granny Smith, and Fuji lead the way.
Did You Know?
An average of 65 apples per person are consumed in America each year.
- Apple trees can grow up to 40 feet high; though many orchards have dwarf trees for easier picking.
- The first apple nursery opened in 1730; the location was Flushing, New York.
- A peck of apples is 1/4 a bushel and weighs approximately 10.5 pounds.
- A bushel weighs 42 pounds.
- A bushel of apples can produce 20-24 quarts of applesauce.
- At room temperature, an apple will ripen 6-10 times faster than in the refrigerator.
Source: USDA Nutrient Data Laboratory — Apple