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How an Apple a Day Really Does Keep the Doctor Away ...

Apples aren’t just an epic snack foods ladies - there are many ways to use apples to enhance your health and improve your life too. Apples come in many varieties and colors to choose from, so there’s sure to be an apple out there you can learn to love. No matter which variety you choose, all apples are excellent fruits to include in your diet. They’re full of properties that not only satisfy your appetite but also improve your health. Try out a few of these ways to use apples to enhance your health and eat at least one of them each day.

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1. Add Them to Oatmeal for Lower Cholesterol

Oatmeal and apples are both full of certain fibers that help lower your cholesterol, so combining the two is a great way to use apples to enhance your health. Oatmeal and apples are both great sources of soluble fiber which helps soak up water and remove excess cholesterol and toxins in the body. Make a bowl of steel cut or rolled oats and add one small chopped apple or a cup of plain apple sauce to your oatmeal for a filling, healthy breakfast or dinner.

2. Snack on Them with Almond Butter for Pretty Skin

Apples are full of vitamin C, a top nutrient to keep your skin pretty and clear. Vitamin C helps manufacture collagen in the body, which helps keep your skin bright in appearance and free from fine lines and sun damage. Add a tablespoon or two of raw almond butter to some apple slices to take it up a notch further. Almonds contain healthy fats and vitamin E that improve skin health and your body will absorb the antioxidants in the apples better with a little bit of fat included.

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3. Add Them to a Salad to Fight Constipation

Hey- we’ve all been there and constipation is absolutely no fun to deal with. Luckily, apples are an easy and more natural solution than harsh laxatives. Just add any type of apple, chopped or diced to your next salad. I suggest leaving off the cheese and dairy-based dressing though, since they make constipation even worse. Try using tomatoes, chopped apples, strawberries, sliced almonds, some green peas or chickpeas, lemon juice, black pepper, and hummus on top of a bed of spinach and romaine. Dig in and feel better within about four hours - no kidding!

4. Eat Apple Sauce for IBS

Since raw apples are sometimes hard to digest for individuals with IBS, apple sauce is the next best thing. Unsweetened appl esauce is rich in water which improves constipation, plus the fibers from apples are still found in apple sauce, but they’re broken down and much easier on the belly. Have a cup of unsweetened apple sauce with some cinnamon and a ripe mashed banana mixed in for a snack. Your tummy will feel better in no time with no IBS symptoms in sight.

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5. Add to a Smoothie to Keep You Full

Adding one chopped apple to your next smoothie will help keep you full for hours! Any type will do, but if you like sweeter apples, go for Gala, Pink Lady, Golden Delicious, or Fuji varieties. If you like a tart flavor, go with Granny Smith apples and if you like a neutral, mildly sweet flavor, go with Red Delicious apples. The fiber known as pectin in all apples swells in the stomach (without bloating you up) and helps combat hunger and cravings. It adds a yummy flavor to your smoothies too!

6. Use Apple Sauce in Baked Goods to Improve Your Weight

You can use apple sauce in place of both butter and oil in most baked goods recipes such as muffins, pancakes, quick breads, waffles and some cookies. Since apple sauce is so low in calories, you’ll improve your weight by eating the healthier (and deliciously sweet) versions made with apple sauce instead of versions made with high amounts of fat from butter and oil.

7. Eat Them as a Snack to Boost Mood and Energy

Eating an apple as a snack is sure to boost your mood and energy. Apples contain antioxidants that can improve your mood in a very short amount of time and because they contain water and natural sugars that break down slowly, their slow release of carbohydrates in the bloodstream will keep you energized and feeling well for hours. The next mid-afternoon slump you face, have an apple instead of coffee and experience the effects for yourself.

No matter how you choose to eat them, apples are amazing fruits for you. Don’t leave them out of your grocery carts or your daily meal plans. What’s your favorite way to eat apples?

Sources: whfoods.com, shape.com, eatingwell.com

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