Apple is a member of the Rosaceae botanical family. This botanical family includes many edible fruits including pears, apricots, plums, cherries, peaches, raspberries, and strawberries, along with the nut, almond.
Over 100 different varieties of apples are commercially grown in the United States. The top varieties include Pink Lady, Empire, Fuji, Gala, Golden Delicious, Granny Smith, Honeycrisp, McIntosh, and Red Delicious. Apples can be red, green, or yellow in color.
Apples are an excellent source of fiber and a good source of vitamin C. They also contain numerous phytochemicals.
- Fiber helps to control weight by making you feel fuller fast. It also supports digestion by preventing constipation.
- Vitamin C supports absorption of iron, helps to repair and maintain cartilage, bones and teeth, and assists in wound healing.
- Phytochemicals are plant compounds that research suggests benefit health.
- The phytochemicals in apples may help decrease the risk of chronic conditions, such as cardiovascular disease and cancer.
- Eat fresh apples with the skin on to receive the most health benefits. Much of the fiber and phytonutrients are found in the skin of an apple.
Purchasing, Storing, and Preparing
- Purchase apples year round at grocery stores. In the Midwest, purchase apples at farmer’s markets in the fall for peak freshness or pick your own at an apple orchard.
- Choose apples that are firm, smooth, and heavy for their size. The skin should be free from bruises, soft spots, and wrinkles.
- Store your apples in the crisper drawer of your refrigerator inside a plastic bag containing holes.
- Wash apples prior to eating.
- Eat apples raw or cooked. Slice and remove the core to bake, fry, stew, dehydrate, or cook in a saucepan with water to make applesauce or apple butter.
- Apples oxidize when the flesh is exposed to air. To stop them from oxidizing, place apples in a bowl of water with fresh lemon juice for no more than fifteen minutes.
Apple, 1 large
- Calories: 116
- Protein: 0.58 g
- Fat: 0.379 g
- Carbohydrate: 30.8 g
- Fiber: 5.35 g
- Calcium: 13.4 mg
- Iron: 0.268 mg
- Magnesium: 11.2 mg
- Phosphorus: 24.5 mg
- Folate: 6.69 µg
- Vitamin A: 6.69 µg