Health Benefits Of Apples And Why Apples Are A Great Food For Kids

My love for apples

The apple tree has a special place in my childhood. I was born in the middle east, and like many other families of that area, my parents also had a huge apple tree right in our backyard. My sister and I used to climb to the top of that tree and eat delicious, sweet and fresh apples. Back then everything was organic, so my parents were never concerned with chemicals or even with the fact we never washed the apples. Apples have always been the first fruit of my choice, and the same goes for my kids. Our favourite kind is the red delicious which is super sweet and has a gorgeous dark red colour. My love of apples is so strong that I chose it to be on my logo 🙂

A short apple bio

The original apple tree is thought to have grown in eastern Europe and south-western Asia but has now spread to most temperature regions of the world. There are now over 7,000 varieties of apples in the market as a result of cultivation and hybridization. The apple holds a special place in many historical and mythical realms, beginning with the biblical story of Adam and Eve. It also has been used as a symbol in many fairy tales, such as ‘Snow White’ and ‘The Golden Apple’.

adam and eve eating the forbidden apple

 snow white is about to eat the poisoned apple

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

An apple a day keeps the doctor away

What are the health benefits of apples?

Apple is not only a delicious fruit but also a super nutritions food, that should be a part of every child’s diet.

Apples are an excellent source of vitamin C, pectin and other fibres. The are also a good source of potassium. Most of the apple’s important nutrients are contained in its skin, and raw apples are higher in many nutrients and phytochemicals as well.

A 3.5 ounce (100 gram) serving of apple is a one small apple and provides 52 calories, 0.3 grams of protein (yes apples are a source of protein!), 0.2 gram of fat, and 12.8 grams of carbohydrate with 2.4 grams of fibre and 10.4 grams as natural sugars.

The old saying “An apple a day keeps the doctor away” appears to be true. In an analysis of more than eighty-five studies, apple consumption was shown to be consistently associated with reduced risk of heart disease, cancer, asthma, and type 2 diabetes compared to other fruits and vegetables.

In one study, apple consumption was linked to a lower risk for asthma. When nearly 1,500 adults in the United Kingdom were asked about their eating habits during the previous year, the investigators found that people who ate at least two apples each week had a 22 to 32% lower risk of developing asthma than those who ate less of this fruit.

Researches feel that much of apple’s protective effects against heart disease and asthma is related to its high content of flavonoids like quercetin.

Apples are also very high in pectin, a soluble fibre that has been shown to exert a number of beneficial effects. Because it is a gel-forming fibre, pectin can lower cholesterol levels as well as improve the intestinal muscle’s ability to push waste through the gastrointestinal tract (that’s why apples make you poop!).

Why are apples so good for kids?

Apples contain the ‘healthy’ carbohydrates

Apples are a great source of healthy carbohydrates which provide children with the energy they need to learn and play. The carbohydrates in apples are called “complex” which means that the body has to convert it into glucose and then use for energy. This makes apples a wonderful blood sugar balancer which keep kids full for longer periods of time.

 Boron

Apples contain the trace mineral Boron which helps to build strong bones, muscles, improve cognitive skills and muscle coordination.

Pectin

Pectin is a source of soluble fibre which helps to regulate your child’s bowels and have a healthy digestive system.

Now you know why apples are among the first foods recommended to introduce to a person with an upset stomach or diarrhea.

Vitamin C

Vitamin C is a vitamin our bodies don’t store and therefore our children need to get it from food constantly. Vitamin C is needed for growth, tissue repair and to make collagen. Collagen is a protein your child relies on to build skin, cartilage, ligaments, tendons and blood vessels. Vitamin C heals wounds and keeps your child’s bones and teeth healthy and strong.

Something to keep in mind

Now you know about the health benefits of apples for yourself and for your kids, however, there is one more thing you should keep in mind. Apples have one of the highest rates of pesticide use (sprayed up to eight times ), which means you will have to peel the skin. Because most of the nutrients are in the apple’s skin, I recommend buying organic apples from the store or picking apples from an organic orchard.

Useful Apple Tartness Chart

apple tartness chart

Apple Recipes

People all over the world have created wonderful and creative dishes with apples. I have a collection on my Pinterest Board called “Apple Recipes”, feel free to check it out:

http://www.pinterest.com/healthwithmom/apple-recipes/

Leave a Comment