$5 for Your Health: How Do You Like Them Apples

by Rachel on June 9, 2009

Do you have extra money burning a hole in your pocket? I’m going to make a wild guess and say probably not! People fear working on their health and fitness because they think it’s going to cost them. So I’m starting a new feature–$5 for Your Health–to show healthy ideas that will cost you less than five bucks. I am sure there are some weeks when you can’t afford $5, (confession: I charged a red pepper last week) but maybe you can take it from your “monthly vice allottment” and skip the Starbucks or (more likely) the double gin and tonic.

So…the first way to max out $5 for your health is…buy seven apples!

In my opinion, the whole fiasco in the Garden of Eden was not the fault of the talking snake in the tree. It was probably just a perfect Honeycrisp.  Even if it meant the fall of humanity, I’d still bite. Like Eve, I cannot resist apples. I eat at least one a day, more if I’m really feeling it. They are cheap and simple. I could wax poetic about their shiny beauty and perfect, juicy taste, but I don’t want to freak you out, so I’m just going to get down to their amazing health benefits!

An apple a day can keep a lot more than the doctor away. Research has found that apples can help prevent many types of cancer (including breast cancer) and lower cholesterol. They protect your heart. This fruit is naturally low in calories and provides antioxidants and fiber in each crisp bite. One bonus: the fiber, combined with a chemical called pectin, helps you feel fuller, longer!

I always feel more satisfied after I eat an apple for dessert. But it finally occurred to me that maybe if I ate an apple before a meal, I’d feel fuller and eat less. I’ve been having my daily apple as a pre-dinner snack, and it’s totally working for me. They are so light and sweet, they work any time of day, and are  easily transported. (Mine flew from NYC to MI today!)

If you find apples boring, try switching varieties. There are so many good ones to try. Honeycrisp are usually more expensive, but are huge and satisfying. Experiment with different colors. I am partial to Granny Smith, but lately I’ve been loving Royal Gala. Get creative: bake them, slice them thinly and layer on a PB sandich, or enjoy with cheddar cheese for an afternoon snack.

And now for some really mature humor

What kind of apple has a short temper?

A crab apple!

LOL. Terrible! Go buy your apples!!!

{ 3 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Beth June 9, 2009 at 9:01 pm

Apples are a NECESSITY in life. I love them so much that when on Thanksgiving, I made an apple-cinnamon marinade for my turkey and threw apple slices in the pan while it roasted in the oven. It was delicious.

And now for MY $5 health-fix, I’d like to address the Crystal Light Green Tea to-go packs. You can throw a few in your purse and put a pack in your water bottle every day. The polyphenols in green tea are twice as powerful as resveratrol, the ingredient in red wine that limits the negative effects of smoking and a fatty diet.

That being said, it’s also said to raise your metabolism. I drank an awful lot of green tea around the time that I lost 30 pounds; though I was doing a lot to shed the weight, I can’t believe that the green tea didn’t aid a little bit. You will notice that you’ll become quite “regular” if you drink it every day.

Just remember to shake well after you put the packet in the water bottle.

And next time your at Starbucks, order my favorite drink for the Summer at just a couple bucks: Grande unsweetened ice green tea.*

*also great for hangovers

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2 Beth June 9, 2009 at 9:02 pm

Ahem.

I meant “you’re.” Ugh.

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3 Heather June 9, 2009 at 9:59 pm

Your bad jokes are leading me to believe that you have turned into my father.

But no kidding about the apples! I always had one in my bag during college! Perfect portable fruit!

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