BENEFITS OF UNSWEETENED APPLESAUCE
Posted By: Elynor Moss on June 25, 2019 |
hile good health is more complex than eating an apple a day to keep the doctor away, fruits and vegetables provide undeniably crucial nutrition vital for good health. Whether apples are whole or made into applesauce, they contain fiber and vitamin C. Applesauce naturally contains no fat and few calories per serving if you choose unsweetened varieties or make your own. Enjoy it by itself or substitute it for fats in baked goods to keep them tender.
Most whole grains, fruits, vegetables & nuts, along with other unprocessed plant based foods are good sources of fiber, providing at least 2.5g per serving. And even though applesauce is made from apples that are peeled, mashed & cooked, yet, retaining enough fiber to qualify as a good source.
Apples provide high amounts of beneficial phytochemicals, including catechin, chlorogenic acid, phloridzin and quercetin,that act as antioxidants to prevent cell damage. These beneficial phytochemicals can lower your risk for asthma, Alzheimer’s disease, cancer, heart disease and Type 2 Diabetes. The beneficial polyphenols in applesauce is close to that in whole apples, and is able to provide many of the same benefits.
The healthiest type of applesauce is homemade, unsweetened and made from unpeeled apples. Commercial applesauce is often made without the apple peel, which lowers the fiber and phytochemical content. The apple peel contains 4 to 15X the amount of phytochemicals you shouldn't leave it out. Adding cinnamon can help bring out the sweetness without added sugar, and also adds its own unique set of health benefits, including lowering your risk for high cholesterol and heart disease and acting as an anti-inflammatory and antioxidant, while providing antiviral, antibacterial, anti-fungal & anti-microbial properties.
A cup serving of unsweetened applesauce provides about 100 calories and 2.7 grams of fiber, or 11 percent of the daily value. It’s an especially good source of soluble fiber, the type that dissolves into a gel-like substance and helps maintain healthy blood sugar and cholesterol levels. Applesauce also contains pectin, a special type of soluble fiber that’s particularly effective in reducing high cholesterol levels. More so than other types of soluble fiber, pectin efficiently binds to cholesterol and other fatty acids and promotes their elimination through waste.
Both applesauce and apple juice possess similar calorie counts, but because applesauce contains fiber (or pectin), it's the healthier option. Dietary fiber keeps the digestive system functioning regularly, takes longer to digest and leaves your stomach more slowly, so you will not only feel fuller when you consume applesauce vs. apple juice, you literally remain fuller. Add a cup of applesauce to your lunch, add some to Greek yogurt or to boost the fiber content of your baked goods by using it as a sugar substitute.
General intake guidelines for fiber recommend for younger men and women is to consume 38g and 25g of fiber a day, while most men and women past the age of 50, require a daily intake of around 30g and 21g. More specifically individuals should get 14g of fiber for every 1,000 calories consumed.
Many fruits have a reputation for offering plenty of vitamin C, but applesauce can supply as much as 80% of your daily allowance.
A cup of unsweetened applesauce contains only around 100 calories, yet is substantial enough to act as a filling snack by itself. Combined with a handful of almonds or a dollop of peanut butter, the combination provides a balanced meal rich in protein, carbohydrates & healthy fat. Applesauce contains no fat, as calories come from sugar, in the form of naturally occurring fructose. Look for unsweetened varieties, as many contain hefty doses of high-fructose corn syrup or sucrose.
Incorporated As An Ingredient
Applesauce by itself makes a delicious and wholesome sweet treat. As an ingredient, it also lightens the caloric density of baked goods and makes a delicious glaze for roasted meats. Swapping half of a recipe's oil, butter or shortening, leaving the finished item with a tender, crumbly texture and a slightly sweeter flavor, all while reducing calories and adding fiber. Use applesauce as a glaze for grilled foods or poured over a pork roast.
Applesauce is also a great way to boost the fiber intake of babies, toddlers or anyone having difficulty chewing or swallowing.
Use as a Fat Replacement
When baking, applesauce makes a nutritious fat replacement. Add applesauce instead of any liquid fat, including oil or melted butter, as you will increase the fiber while decreasing the fat. Start by replacing half of the fat before trying to replace it all. Applesauce will also help keep your baked goods moist. Unfortunately, this trick doesn't work well as a replacement for solid fats.
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