My daughter inherited her love of coffee directly from me, and definitely brought that love with her to her semester in Paris. Luckily for her, her host parents share her passion, and she wakes up every morning to a fresh pot of coffee to go with her petit déjeuner. This was not the case, however, one early Monday morning when she was running a little late for her 9:30am art history class.
She tells the story like this: “That morning, I emerged, as usual, maybe a little later than usual, to find the coffee pot upside down on the drying rack. Ghislain, one of my host parents, was in the kitchen peeling these weird, French mini apples that we always have in a bowl on the counter.
Nikki [in French]: Oh, is there no coffee this morning?
Ghislain [in French]: No, today I am eating apples. Would you like an apple?
It took me another thirty seconds to realize that there was, in fact, NO COFFEE, and being late, as I was, I didn’t have time to make any. Seriously? Apples? What is this guy talking about? How are apples a replacement for coffee? Are these apples laced with caffeine?”
As hilarious as I found this story, it got me to thinking about apples, especially since, my daughter added when recounting the tale to me, that she eats them every day, but not for a source of caffeine. So, if not for caffeine, for what?
It turns out that apples are a powerhouse of vitamins, fiber, and antioxidants—all extremely important elements of a well-rounded, anti-aging diet.
In addition to being packed with immune-boosting vitamin C, apples are full of those amazing antioxidants that keep your cells healthy, your cardiovascular system in tip-top, and your heart healthy. However, it turns out that my daughter’s host parent made a mistake: the skins of apples contain the majority of the fruit’s vitamin C and antioxidants, so make sure not to skip out on those.
Apples also contribute to your heart health through a type of metabolite called flavonoids. Flavonoids have been shown to lower the risk of heart disease, as well as regulate blood pressure, and prevent inflammation. Studies have also shown that unlike most fruits, especially citrus fruits, apples actually lower the risk of asthma and other lung-related problems, and flavonoids are key nutrients when it comes to general lung support. And juicy, delicious apples are just packed with them!
Looking for a sweeter source of fiber than wheat bran? Just pick up some apples! Apples contain both kinds of fiber, soluble and insoluble, which are both really important for regulating LDL cholesterol.
You can try chopped up apples in your salad, apples with peanut butter (one of my favorites) or with almond butter, chopped apples in your hot cereal in the morning, or baked apples with cinnamon, yum
So do your body—not to mention your taste buds—a big favor, and pick up a Pink Lady, a Red Delicious, a Granny Smith, or a Fuji apple ASAP!