Nuts are one of the healthiest snacks you can get, as they contain a wide range of nutrients. They are energy-boosters, and at the same time, they are excellent for a low-carbon diet.
You can enjoy: hazelnuts, almonds, pistachios, pecan, walnuts, cashews, peanuts, Brazil nuts, macadamia nuts (even though peanuts are actually legumes, they have a similar nutrient profile as the other nuts), and be certain that you do something good for your body.
All the nuts are beneficial for health, and there are many studies to prove it. However, it should be kept in mind that the beneficial effects of nuts are attributed to nuts that have been minimally processed and have no added ingredients (like salt, additives, oil, etc.).
What do the nuts have?
Nuts are a great source of “healthy” fat, fiber and protein. They are rich in magnesium, vitamin E, polyphenols, monounsaturated fats, omega 3 fatty acids (ALA), fibers and calories.
It is proven they are all good for the heart, because nuts may help lower total LDL (bad) cholesterol and triglycerides by boosting the level of HDL (good) cholesterol.
Each of them has a special effect on the organism. For example, macadamia nuts are especially beneficial for the heart, Brazil nuts are abundant in selenium, hazelnuts are extra rich in vitamin E and magnesium, pecans and Almonds reduce bad cholesterol, cashew nuts are high in minerals, walnuts have more omega 3 fatty acids (ALA) and reduce inflammation. Brazil nut has more than 100% of the RDI (Reference daily intakes) for Selenium.
Nuts are charged with antioxidants
The strong antioxidant found in nuts called polyphenols can counteract oxidative stress by neutralizing free radicals.
Antioxidants mostly come from fresh fruits and vegetables. They prohibit the oxidation process of the molecules in the body. Antioxidants benefit the body by neutralizing damaging free radicals from the organism. Free radicals can cause a wide range of illnesses and chronic diseases. The human body naturally produces free radicals and antioxidants to counteract their damaging effects. However, free radicals outnumber the naturally occurring antioxidants.
Good for heart
The nuts have beneficial effects on risk factors for heart disease. Studies consistently show that nut intake has a cholesterol-lowering effect, in the context of healthy diets, and there is emerging evidence of beneficial effects on oxidative stress, inflammation, and vascular reactivity.
Several studies have shown that nuts (almond and pistachios) can help in losing weight. Similar to almonds, pistachios may improve cholesterol levels. Eating 2–3 ounces of pistachios a day may help increase “good” HDL cholesterol. Also, don’t forget the walnuts – they may benefit heart health.