What is a nut?
Nuts are one of the healthiest foods one can add to a daily diet. They are high in good fats, protein, dietary fibre, vitamins and minerals. Nuts are convenient to consume and can easily be a part of any diet.
Some commonly consumed nuts are cashew nuts, fox nuts, almonds, walnuts, ground nuts, and pistachios.
Nuts: Benefits & Uses
Regular intake of nuts is associated with a wide range of health benefits.
- Rich source of nutrients: Nuts are a powerhouse of nutrients like protein, monounsaturated fats, selenium, magnesium, phosphorus, zinc, and vitamin E.
- Better lipid profile: Despite being high in fats, nuts are good for heart health. Nuts are majorly composed of unsaturated fatty acids like MUFA that have cholesterol-lowering properties. Nuts like almonds and peanuts have been shown to boost good HDL cholesterol levels and lower triglycerides. A healthy blood cholesterol profile means a reduced risk of coronary heart disease.
- Reduce diabetes risk: Nuts are beneficial for people with diabetes as they are high in dietary fibre and low in carbs, thus preventing sudden blood sugar spikes. Nuts have also been shown to reduce oxidative stress, inflammation and blood pressure in people with diabetes.
- Support weight management: The high dietary fibre and protein content of nuts makes them suitable for a low-calorie and weight-loss diet. A handful of nuts is perfect for satisfying mid-meal cravings with fewer calories and curbing the cravings for sugary foods.
- High in dietary fibre: Nuts have been shown to benefit gut health by promoting the growth of gut-friendly bacteria due to their high dietary fibre content.
- Anti-inflammatory: Nuts like walnuts, hazelnuts and almonds possess anti-inflammatory properties. They may help relieve joint pain, swelling and redness. Walnuts also contain omega-3 fats which may help lessen post-workout muscle soreness and speed up recovery.
- Antioxidant-rich: Nuts contain polyphenols with potent antioxidant properties. People who consume nuts regularly are better able to fight oxidative stress and free radicals.
- Boost brain health: Nuts like almonds, walnuts, Brazil nuts, and hazelnuts contain nutrients like vitamin E and omega-3 fats, which are good for brain health. They boost cognitive health and reduce the risk of diseases like Alzheimer's and Parkinson's.
- Strengthen bones: Nuts contain nutrients like magnesium, vitamin K, calcium, potassium, and phosphorus. These nutrients are vital for bone building and maintaining bone density.
- Reduce cancer risk: Nuts may help reduce cancer risk due to their high antioxidant content. Intake of nuts is linked with a reduced risk of breast and prostate cancer, as observed in studies.
There are many types of nuts, each having its unique nutritional profile and benefits.
- Almonds: They are an excellent source of dietary fibre, vitamin E, and protein. Almonds are considered suitable for heart and brain health.
- Cashew nuts: They are good for bone health as cashews are rich in protein, vitamin K, manganese, and magnesium. These nuts are beneficial for maintaining blood sugar and cholesterol levels.
- Brazil nuts: These nuts are a rich source of selenium and hence act as powerful antioxidants.
- Fox nuts: Fox nuts or makhana are high in antioxidants, calcium and amino acids. They help strengthen the bone and stabilize blood sugar levels.
- Pine nuts: Pine nuts contain omega-3 fats and are superb for brain and heart health.
- Peanuts: Peanuts are a great plant protein source. They are packed with MUFA and other nutrients like niacin, folate, and magnesium.
- Pistachios: Pistachios are excellent for our immune health. They contain several plant compounds with antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties, like lutein, zeaxanthin, flavonoids, and anthocyanins.
- Hazelnuts: Hazelnuts are loaded with vitamin E and antioxidants like quercetin, gallic acid, and epicatechin.
- Macadamia nuts: They are high in MUFA, which protects our heart health by their cholesterol-lowering effect.
- Walnuts: Walnuts come with the benefits of nutrients like omega-3 fats, copper, manganese, and magnesium. They help improve brain function and reduce heart disease risk.
How to choose the right nuts for you?
Here are a few checkpoints to consider before buying nuts.
- Consider your nutritional needs before selecting suitable nuts for you. For example, if you want omega-3-rich nuts, consider walnuts or pine nuts. Have peanuts or almonds for high protein nuts.
- It is advisable to opt for unsalted or low-sodium nuts.
- Check the serving size, as excess intake of nuts might increase calorie load.
- If you are allergic to any nut, read the allergen warning on the label pack.
How to use nuts?
One can enjoy the health benefits of nuts either by consuming them raw or adding them to shakes, smoothies, salads, homemade muffins, cakes, oatmeal bowls, etc. Nut butter like almond and peanut butter can also be used as a spread.
Where to buy nuts?
Nutrabay.com is India's most trusted leading online website for the best nuts, seeds and grains. Products sold on Nutrabay are 100% authentic as they are sourced either directly from the brands or official importers. We guarantee a hassle-free buying experience online with secure payment options. Check out Nutrabay for the best nuts and seeds prices to feel great every day and build a perfectly healthy body.
Are nuts safe to use?
Nuts are safe to use and can be consumed by everyone, provided the person is not allergic or sensitive to them.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
1. How much nuts can I eat per day?
A handful of nuts, around 30-50 grams daily, is sufficient to enjoy them daily.
2. Can people with high cholesterol levels eat nuts?
Nuts are high in healthy fats like MUFA and omega-3, which help lower harmful LDL cholesterol and triglyceride levels hence safe for people with elevated blood cholesterol levels.
3. What is the best time to eat nuts?
One can have nuts at any time of the day.
4. Can I eat roasted nuts?
Roasted nuts are healthy, provided they do not contain added salt.
5. Can I lose weight by eating nuts?
Nuts may support weight loss goals by providing satiety with fewer calories as they have high protein and fibre content.