Nuts are high in calories and fat. That’s the truth. But does this mean that nuts are no good? No, not exactly. Whether you believe it or not, nuts are full of health benefits. They are high in protein, fiber and vitamins and minerals. They are friendly to the heart and they can even help you lose weight! As long as you consume just the right amount, you can eat nuts everyday of your life.
I often show my clients in my office packages of nuts and when they look at the nutrition facts closely they see that typically nuts are mostly fat and boy are they surprised. For example, 1 ounce of almonds has 160 Calories and has 120 Calories from fat. If you do the Math you can see how high the percentage of fat is. Throughout the years in my practice, I have watched all the food fads come down the line and people just overdo it because they think they are making healthy choices.
Nuts are very tasty. There’s no question about that. That’s why it’s so easy for some people to go through a 20oz bag of nuts in no time. This is where the problem starts and why nuts have gained such a bad reputation. The daily recommended amount of nuts is only a handful (1-1.5ounces), not a cup and definitely not an entire bag.
Health Benefits of Nuts
Nuts Health Benefit #1
Nuts are nutritious.
It’s amazing how a single nut can pack in an impressive amount of protein, vitamins and minerals. Just take a look at the list of goodness nuts have:
- Vitamin E
- Pantothenic acid
- Vitamin B-6
Very healthy, isn’t it?
Nuts Health Benefit #2
Nuts are heart-friendly.
Even though nuts are high in fat they are still friendly to the heart. Nuts are rich in unsaturated fat, the healthy fat that lowers bad cholesterol (LDL).
Nuts Health Benefit #3
Nuts can aid weight loss.
The protein and fat content of nuts can make you feel full longer. So if you’re watching your weight, it will help you avoid overeating.
Nuts Health Benefit #4
Nuts are full of Omega-3s.
Nuts are known to be one of the best plant foods that are rich in Omega-3s. Omega-3s are known to lower the risks of stroke, high blood pressure, breast cancer, colon cancer and prostate cancer.
Nuts Health Benefit #5
Nuts are good for the skin.
Nuts contain a significant amount of Vitamin E, a potent antioxidant that helps the cells fight off free radicals which in return gives you a healthy glowing skin.
Nuts are probably one of the greatest foods to snack on. But if you’re the type who goes nuts over nuts, never eat out of the bag or the tin can. Just grab a handful and walk away so you won’t be tempted to finish the whole package in one go. Also, try enjoying nuts with other foods. Toss them in your cereal, pasta dishes or salads. Better yet, cook with them. Nuts go well in breads, muffins, steamed vegetables, chicken stuffing and breading. Nuts are not only delicious but also versatile. Just keep in mind that a handful a day is all you need.