Bright color, sweet-tart flavors, and crisp and juicy textures come together in this fun and healthy salad. This salad is perfect for a summer evening or to brighten a winter meal.
With the abundance of nutrition, it contains, your health will appreciate it as much as your taste buds. Eating well is always easier when you enjoy your meals.
Apart from being delicious, this combination of ingredients is full of nutrients that can improve your overall health.
With apples, fennel, celery, and zinc-rich walnuts delivering everything you need, this salad packs way more in than color and flavor. Here’s a closer look at the numerous health benefits of these ingredients.
Apples are a popular fruit thanks to their juicy, sweet flavor, the ability to quench your thirst, and how they fill your tummy. They are full of essential nutrients, such as vitamins B6, C, and K, as well as fiber, potassium, copper, and magnesium. The nutrients and minerals found in apples help improve your health in a variety of ways.
This rich source of fiber helps to aid your digestive processes by promoting regular bowel movements and preventing stomach problems and constipation. It also helps to remove excess cholesterol from your arteries, protecting you from atherosclerosis and other cardiovascular problems.
Apples stimulate the metabolism within your intestines and promote a healthy balance of bacteria. This helps to eliminate bad bacteria and maximizes the efficiency with which your body absorbs nutrients.
The polyphenols in apples have been linked to reducing the uptake of carbohydrates in the body. This reduces the level of sugar in the blood and sugar fluctuations, therefore keeping diabetes in check. The polyphenols also stimulate insulin receptors which speed up the removal of sugar.
Biting into a crunchy apple helps promote healthy teeth and gums. The antibacterial properties of this fruit help prevent bacteria from infecting your gums. They also stimulate the secretion of saliva, which promotes an alkaline atmosphere in your mouth, preventing bacteria from setting up residence.
The benefits of celery start with its strong antioxidant properties, then there are beneficial enzymes as well as vitamins and minerals, all working to keep your health optimal. Celery has been used in folk medicine for centuries for good reason—the combination of nutrients and anti-inflammatory and antioxidant powers make it one super vegetable.
Unique proteins in celery help to lower cholesterol by removing the lipids from the bloodstream, thereby protecting your health and promoting overall cardiovascular health.
Celery acts as an anti-hypertensive agent and reduces blood pressure, which is important in lowering your risk for coronary heart disease. Specifically, the seeds help to lower elevated blood pressure levels. Celery extract helps blood vessels to expand and contract allowing improved blood flow.
Used for centuries for medicinal purposes, celery contains anti-microbial properties that can significantly purify and reduce the growth of harmful bacteria.
The antioxidants and polysaccharides help to control free radical damage as well as inflammation, which are leading causes of diseases such as cancer, heart disease, arthritis, and asthma.
An odorless and oily compound known as NBP in celery seeds helps your body to detox. As a regular part of your diet, celery can help you filter out toxins from your body, smooth digestion, and reduce bloating.
Fennel is widely used in the culinary scene but has also been used for medicinal purposes too. Apart from adding a very distinct taste to your foods, fennel can deliver powerful health benefits that you don’t want to miss out on.
Both iron and the amino acid histidine are found in fennel, and both of these are helpful for treating anemia.
The carminative properties of the aspartic acid found in fennel help to relieve gas and bloating. It is often found in natural remedies and medications for treating flatulence because of its superior ability to expel gas quickly.
Bloating can be a great discomfort but regularly adding fennel to your diet can relieve the pain.
Fennel is another great source of fiber which is advantageous for your digestive tract, particularly the beneficial bacteria you can further aid with the right probiotics, and your heart health. It is particularly helpful at lowering levels of cholesterol in your blood and decreasing your risk for heart attack and stroke.
There have been several impressive studies regarding the effects fennel has against cancer. Thanks to the high concentration of flavonoids in fennel, extracts can effectively inhibit the growth of tumors. The phenols help to protect your cells from the harmful effects of radiation you may be exposed to during chemotherapy.
Walnuts have long been called the “brain food”. The crinkly outer appearance of the seed resembles a brain, and recent studies have highlighted that there are real benefits for your brain. Along with brain-boosting powers, walnuts offer antioxidants and protein to enhance your overall well-being.
Walnuts are rich in amino acids, omega-3 fatty acids, and monounsaturated fatty acids, all of which prevent coronary heart disease. They help to reduce cholesterol as well as elevated blood pressure levels.
As one of the world’s top antioxidant foods, walnuts protect your cells from oxidative damage. They have remarkable scavenging abilities and also help to protect your liver from chemical damage.
The essential fatty acids in walnuts support bone health as they increase calcium absorption and deposition. They also reduce the amount of calcium excretion, which allows more to remain in the body where it is utilized for bone health.
Preparation Time: About 10 minutes
¾ cup walnuts
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
3 celery sticks, sliced diagonally
1/4-inch thick 2 fennel bulbs, trimmed, halved, cored and thinly sliced
2 apples, halved, cored and sliced
1/2 cup basil leaves
Pecorino cheese shavings, for garnish
1. Preheat your oven to 375 and spread the walnuts on a pie dish, then toast for 7 to 8 minutes.
2. Coarsely chop the walnuts and place them to the side.
3. In a large bowl, whisk the olive oil, lemon juice, and seasonings. Add the apples, fennel, celery, and basil and toss until everything is lightly coated.
4. Place the mixture into a salad bowl and season with salt, pepper, and more olive oil, then top with the walnuts and garnish with the cheese shavings.
The ingredients in this wonderful salad are both tasty and nutritious. Separately, they provide essential nutrients and health benefits. When combined, you get what can only be described as a “super salad”.
For those who have limited diets or limited time, this easy-to-make meal or side dish provides everything you need in one bowl. Give yourself and your digestive health a break—try this salad today.