Everyone seems to have a food or foods that cause some stomach distress. I would put apples in the top 10 list for that complaint.

Bloating from certain foods like apples is more common than most think.

We tend to get caught in the mindset that if it’s natural or ‘real’ then it must be good for us.

For the most part, that would be sound advice. However there are a number of real food options that are more problematic than a 3 day old greasy burrito.

What’s the answer?

Cook it!

When I recommend cooking the apple I tend to hear,

“But doesn’t cooking destroy the nutritional value?”

Sort of. It will basically stay similar except for vitamin C which you can easily recoup with consumption of other fruit.

My question is won’t you eat more fruit if it doesn’t irritate your stomach?

Hard fruit like apples, pears and bananas are common place in grocery stores year round but how much should the ease of shipping dictate your diet? Hard fruit won’t bruise and spoil as easy thus they tend to dominate the fruit racks.

When I ask clients if there are issues digesting certain foods they tend to say no.

If I expand on that question asking whether they get bloating or gas they answer, “Oh yeah but that’s normal.”

Becoming bloated and gaseous from the same fruit or other food should set off an alarm. Ok – maybe not an alarm but a windshield wiper fluid light at least.

The main culprit in apples is pectin.

Apples do have a higher percentage than other fruit (outside the peel of citrus fruit).

Pectin is generally considered a positive in many health circles but your digestion may disagree. Your digestion is better at deciphering what works best when compared to a store magazine.

Peeling the apples will reduce much of the pectin but cooking will further improve digestibility.

Here’s a simple recipe that is fast and tasty:

Ingredients

 4 McIntosh apples, peeled and sliced (about 2 lb.)

  • 1/2 cup firmly packed light brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 2 tablespoons water
  • 1 tablespoon butter

Nutritional Information

  • calories 128
  • calories from fat 18
  • fat 2 g
  • sat fat 1.2 g
  • mono fat 0.5 g
  • poly fat 0.1 g
  • protein 0.3 g
  • carbohydrate 29.2 g
  • fiber 1.3 g
  • cholesterol 5 mg
  • iron 0.6 mg
  • sodium 21 mg
  • calcium 25 mg

How to Make It

  1. Toss together first 4 ingredients in a large zip-top plastic bag, tossing to coat apples.
  2. Cook apple mixture, 2 Tbsp. water, and 1 Tbsp. butter in a medium saucepan over medium heat, stirring occasionally, 8 to 10 minutes or until apples are tender.low pectin-apples

YUM!