Sounds like a silly question right? Actually, it’s not so silly. It all depends on how the apple is presented. We like to think of food in terms of grades, similar to how we are graded in school. An “A” means that a food is really good for you and an “F” means you’re probably better off not eating it.
Apples might earn any grade from A to F. We will walk you through some examples and explain why.
Plain Apple – A
Plain apples are natural and come straight from nature. They are raw, unprocessed and loaded with vitamins and fiber. When you eat apples, make sure to eat the skin because that’s where a lot of the nutrients are contained. Apples are also low in calories. Hence, a plain apple is awesome for you and earns a grade of A. Duh, that’s no surprise.
Apple Purée – B
If you take a plain apple and blend it into purée, it is still healthy; it has all the nutrients of the original apple, but because it is blended, it is no longer raw.
Why is that important? Well, there is something called the Thermic Effect of Food (TEF). It refers to the energy your body burns when digesting food. By blending an apple, you reduce the TEF, so it requires fewer calories to digest it. To be lean, you should burn as many calories as possible. You can think of apple purée as partially digested apple, so your body doesn’t have to work as hard to digest it; your blender has done some of the work for you. So, for that reason, apple purée is a little less healthy than a plain apple, so it earns a grade of B.
Apple Sauce – C
Apple sauce is a notch down from apple puree. It has many of the same health benefits, but often contains additives such as sugar and/or preservatives. Because of the additives, apple sauce earns a lower grade than apple purée. There can be a big difference in the healthiness of apple sauce. Homemade apple sauce can be relatively healthy if it is fresh with minimal additives, but store-bought apple sauce can be terrible for you. Check the ingredient label and make sure you know what is in it.
Apple Juice – D
Apple juice is basically pure sugar. Some of the nutrients of the original apple might still be there, but most of the healthy stuff has been filtered out. To add insult to injury, many brands of apple juice have additives such as sugar and preservatives. If you want to remain healthy, you would be well advised to avoid apple juice or for that matter all juices entirely, including orange juice, grape juice, even V-8 juice. If you want juice, make it yourself using a blender and don’t filter out the good stuff.
Apple Pie – F
Sorry to spoil the party, but do we even need to explain this one? If Apple Pie had an A rating, we would all be eating it and obesity would cease to exist — well, it doesn’t hurt to fantasize from time to time. OK, back to reality. Folks, if you care about your health, try to keep your apple pie consumption to a minimum. What more can we say.
Healthy foods come straight from nature. If you pick a food straight from a tree, or straight from the ground and eat it, then it will generally be good for you. Foods that are processed through blending or heating will be less healthy. And the more stuff that is added to a food, then the less healthy it will be. If in doubt, ask yourself, did this food come directly from nature? If not, then how processed is it and how much junk has been added to it. For the sake of your health, stick to foods that are natural and unprocessed.