Fall Into Some Healthy Habits!

Me, apple picking in Maryland! Find an orchard near you!

Take A Bite Out of Fall!

My favorite season is the fall – I love to be outdoors when the weather is crisp and perfect and the leaves are starting to turn. One of my favorite outdoor fall activities is going apple picking! Apple picking is a great way to enjoy the weather and pick out one of fall’s best fruits for yourself! Also, if you get the opportunity to go to an orchard and pick your own apples, you can speak with the farmers themselves and find out about how the apples were grown and which ones are the sweetest, the most sour, etc. Also, many orchards have a quaint store that features homemade jams, apple cider and other delicious fall treats!

An Apple a Day Keeps the Doctor Away!

Well, maybe not all of the time – but apples are packed with a ton of great nutrition to fuel up your body! The skin contains some of the best benefits, including polyphenols (compounds found in plants) that function in a variety of ways to keep your body working and feeling great! Many of these polyphenols serve as antioxidants, which help to prevent damage caused by oxidative stress within the body. Apples are nutrient-dense, meaning that they offer a mouthful of nutrition for relatively few calories. Also, apples are a good source of fiber, which may help to keep you feeling full long after you eat your refreshing snack! Lastly, apples are a juicy, delicious, easily portable snack that is whole, natural and REAL!

*photograph courtesy of http://www.everythingpies.com/

What Can I Do With All These Apples?

Easy Dessert – Baked Apple Slices with Cinnamon! Your kitchen will smell like fall for the rest of the day!

Although I love apple picking, it isn’t the type of thing you usually do everyday. That being said, I like to load up on apples when I go. Although the best (and most real) way to enjoy apples is straight out of the fridge (or bowl, or wherever you store your apples), you can enjoy the health benefits of apples in a ton of other ways, too! One of my favorite desserts is a baked apple with cinnamon on top. Just preheat your oven to 350 (F), cut your apple into slices and place on a baking sheet. sprinkle cinnamon on top and bake in the oven for about 20-30 minutes, until the apple is browned and tender. Then, eat! Simple as that!

Other great ways to enjoy apples are baked into some surprising recipes. For example, pork goes very well with apples – incorporate apples as a topping for pork chops, or use with other pork recipes to get a surprising fruit serving into your meal. Apples are also tasty in tuna salad, chicken salad, or topped on any salad, really!  Also, apples are a great addition to green juices, since their sweetness counteracts the bitterness of many greens, such as kale and spinach. Check my recipes in this blog periodically and you’ll see that I love to cook with apples in the most surprising places!

Apple cider (which contains many healthful and aromatic spices, unlike apple juice) is another great item to enjoy in the fall, either straight out of the fridge, or warmed on the stove. Sipping on apple cider just tastes like fall, to me!

Let me know your favorite ways to eat apples!