If you want to lose weight, you need to eat less. It’s only by eating less that you create the calorie deficit necessary for weight loss. Exercise helps, but unless you are prepared to exercise long and hard every day, dietary changes are a must.
For a lot of people, eating fewer calories means less processed and more natural foods. Candy and takeouts become a thing of the past, and veggies, fruit, lean protein, and whole grains are in.
But, what about snacks?
While some diets ban snacks altogether, that could be a mistake. A healthy snack can help keep hunger at bay and stop you from breaking your diet. In contrast, if snacks are not allowed on your diet, you could find yourself in the grips of severe hunger pangs, which are often impossible to resist.
Weight loss snacks need to be low in sugar, fat, and calories but filling enough to stop you from feeling hungry. Nuts are a good choice, as are raw vegetables. But what about fruit, and are apples good for weight loss?
As weight loss snacks go, apples are an excellent choice. Learn how apples can help you lose weight and improve your health today!
Are Apples Good for Weight Loss
What Are Apples?
Apples are a very popular fruit. They grow on trees, and there are a lot of different varieties to choose from.
Apples can be sweet or sour depending on the type and can usually be eaten with or without their skin.
Most tend to be crisp and juicy, and their texture makes them very enjoyable and easy to eat.
Popular apple varieties include:
- Golden Delicious
- Granny Smith
- Pacific Rose
- Red Delicious
Apples usually have red or green skins, although some varieties are a mixture of the two. They can be eaten raw but can also be cooked. Cooked apples soften and can be used to make desserts such as apple pie and apple sauce. Apples can also be juiced, and fermented apple juice makes alcoholic cider.
Apples are a very healthy food and contain many beneficial nutrients and very few calories. The nutritional values for a single, medium-sized (180 gram) apple are:
- 95 calories
- Fat 0.3 grams
- Carbohydrate 24 grams
- Protein 0.5 grams
- Fiber 4.4 grams
In addition, apples contain the following vitamins and minerals:
- Vitamin A
- Vitamin B6
- Vitamin C
- Vitamin D
Apples and Weight Loss
Apples are the perfect weight-loss snack, and eating apples as part of your diet can help you lose weight in several ways:
Low In Calories
At less than 100 calories per serving, apples are very low in calories.
A candy bar that weighs the same as an apple will provide closer to 1000 calories, so eating apples instead of candy is an easy way to reduce your total daily calorie intake.
Apples are high in fiber. Fiber is indigestible and stays in your stomach for a long time. This means eating an apple will keep you feeling fuller for longer than something with less fiber.
Take Time to Eat
Apples take a fair bit of chewing. This means you’ll feel like you’re eating something more substantial. In comparison, something like a cookie is much easier to eat quickly and contains far more calories. Most people only eat one apple at a time, but you’ll probably want to eat several cookies.
They Have a Low Glycemic Index
Apples contain both sugar and carbs, but they also have a low glycemic index. That means they release their energy slowly. This is part of what makes them filling and also helps keep your blood glucose low and stable. Low, stable blood glucose levels are important for preventing fat gain and promoting fat burning.
People often turn to junk food out of convenience. After all, what could be easier than unwrapping a candy bar when you’re hungry. Apples are just as convenient, widely available, and easy to eat. They’re also easy to transport, so you can make sure you have an apple or two with you wherever you go.
Additional Benefits of Eating Apples
As well as being a useful weight-loss food, eating apples is good for your health. The main benefits of eating apples are:
Apples contain beneficial compounds called antioxidants. Antioxidants fight the damage caused by rogue molecules called free radicals, which are responsible for the aging process and many illnesses and diseases, including cancer.
Apples have been linked to decreased risk of mouth, throat, breast, ovarian, and breast cancers.
Apples are high in soluble and insoluble fiber, both of which are linked to better heart health and a reduced risk of coronary heart disease, heart attack, and stroke.
Better Digestive Health
The fiber in apples is good for all aspects of digestion, especially waste transit. Eating apples can help prevent and treat constipation.
Improved Brain Function
Apples and apple juice may prevent the onset of Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s diseases. This is due to their antioxidant content, which helps protect brain tissue from free radicals called Reactive Oxygen Species, or ROS for short.
Apples contain a lot of vitamins, minerals, and fiber despite being low in calories. Your body needs these nutrients to function correctly. However, consuming too many calories can lead to weight gain and harm your health.
Apples are generally very healthy, but make sure you consider the following before adding them to your diet or eating more apples than usual:
Eating too many apples could mean you end up consuming too much fiber. While fiber IS good for you, too much can cause stomach upsets. For this reason, most people should limit themselves to 1-3 apples per day.
Apples are often treated with harsh chemicals such as pesticides. Consumed in large amounts, these chemicals can be toxic. Always wash apples before eating them, and buy organic apples if you can, which are free from pesticides.
Apples are high in acids that could cause tooth decay and cavities. Brush your teeth after eating apples or eat some cheese afterward to neutralize the acid in apples.
Although rare, some people are allergic to apples. If you experience hives, rashes, an itchy tongue, or sore throat after eating apples, you should talk to your doctor, who may advise you to avoid apples in the future.
Apples contain sugar and carbs, so they’re not really suitable for the ketogenic diet. Just one apple provides 25 grams of carbohydrates, which could be enough to klick you out of ketosis.
Apples are one of the best snack foods around. Because they’re high in fiber and water, apples are low in calories but are still very filling. Apples take time to eat, which means you probably only want to eat one at a time. This makes them ideal for weight loss.
Eating apples is also good for your health even though it’s not a superfood. It’s no wonder that people often say, “an apple a day keeps the doctor away.” Eating apples regularly is linked to lots of health benefits, including a lower risk of cancer, better heart and digestive health, and lower blood glucose levels.
There are lots of different apple varieties to choose from, and most of them are delicious. Red and green apples taste different and often have different textures, so you should have no problem finding one you enjoy. All apple varieties are similarly low in calories and good for your health.
Eating apples is unlikely to cause any side effects, even if you consume 2-3 a day. However, the acid in apples can be hard on your teeth, so you’ll need to practice good oral care after eating them.
Also, you should take a moment to wash your apples before eating them to remove any pesticides. Or, you could just peel your apple if you prefer.
There is no need to give up snacks during your weight loss diet. But you SHOULD skip the candy, exercise, and eat apples instead. They’re much lower in calories and a lot better for you too.