Enjoy this rich, sweet smoothie as the perfect alternative to otherwise unhealthy snacks or desserts. It is widely known that apples are good you – the fruit has even developed a reputation for keeping the doctor away. But exactly how they are good for you is the question.
Apples are a great source of soluble fiber. Pectin, a type of soluble fiber, can lower your cholesterol by blocking the absorption of it. The high fiber found in apples also keeps you feeling full for longer periods of time. The body takes longer to digest complex fiber versus sugar and grains, so apples help to curb constant food cravings. Furthermore, slowing the digestion of food aids in controlling insulin levels by slowly releasing sugar into the bloodstream.
Apples are good for your brain. Eat the skin to get the best benefits, including a powerful antioxidant called quercetin. Quercetin protects brain cells from degeneration and lessens the risk of developing Alzheimer’s disease. Also, if you substitute apple juice for the water in this smoothie recipe, you’ll be gaining a higher amount of the chemical acetylcholine, which improves communication between nerve cells and memory.
In addition, the regular consumption of apples may improve lung function and reduce the affects of asthma. In addition, although not as powerful as oranges in this regard, apples also provide vitamin C to bolster your immune system. Antioxidants in the skin of apples fight cancer-causing free radicals and inflammation.
Cinnamon, too, is full of healthy surprises. For example it is a powerful antioxidant, and assists in the regulation of blood sugar levels in a way similar to apples (helpful especially to those with type II diabetes). The spice also has natural antimicrobial and antifungal properties.
Help your cholesterol, help your brain, and your body overall with a dessert-like smoothie! The combination of apples and cinnamon in this smoothie calls to mind autumn days and baked apple pie. So enjoy the deliciously rich and sweet flavor while at the same time enjoying the health benefits.
1 apple, peeled, cored, and chopped
1 frozen banana
2 tbsp Greek yogurt
1 tbsp maple syrup
1/4 tsp cinnamon
1 cup ice cubes
1/2 cup cold water
1. In a powerful blender, combine ingredients and blend until smooth. Add more cold water if necessary to reach desired consistency. Adjust sweetness to taste. Serve immediately.