Apples

The good stuff:

Are apples a superfood? Probably not, but they are a healthy snack containing pectin, a soluble fibre that helps our digestive system to function smoothly. Normally this would help sufferers of constipation. They also contain a number of antioxidant compounds such as, quercitin, epicatechin and procyanidin, which probably reduce the risk of cancer.They were also found to help prevent Alzheimer's disease in one study.

Apples are also great for cooking and for savoury sauces. Apple sauce with pork is an old favourite and apple crumble was one of my childhood favourite desserts. I was never so keen on baked apple though. Maybe it was the cooking apples we used?

Not so good stuff:

The pips of an apple contain cyanide, but not enough to cause ill health, especially as most pips will just pass straight through you. It is also possible to suffer from an allergy to apple called birch-apple syndrome. This affects a subset of people who are also allergic to birch pollen. It probably affects less than 1 in 100 of us. Pesticides are used on apples and it is a good idea to wash non-organic apples before eating them.

Apples and the environment:

It seems nowadays that most of the supermarket apples come from far away places. I just can't understand this. The UK is a great place to grow great tasting apples, and there really should be no need to buy foreign apples at all. I always choose an apple from the UK if the choice is available.

DrDobbin says:

Apples are a nutritious food. There are great eaten as a snack and have many potential uses in savoury sauces and desserts. There are also many different varieties, most of which are forgotten by the major supermarkets. The range of flavours and textures from different types is truly amazing. I prefer my apples straight off the tree. However they do continue to ripen after picking, and this can make them sweeter so you may like to store yours a little while. If they are from the shops then they have probably been stored long enough already.