Nuts have been on the short end of the deal as far as reputation is concerned. The fact is that nuts should play a vital role in our diet. These little wonders are full of monounsaturated fats that keep the heart healthy and lower the risk of contracting diseases. It is now known that nuts and seeds are not only great sources of protein but can also lower bad cholesterol and even help prevent weight gain.
Some studies show nuts are good in alleviating symptoms of anxiety due to high selenium content. If you are now convinced that nuts are good for you, here then are the top kinds of nuts that you should be munching.
Walnuts are not getting the respect it deserves, seriously. In a 2009 Harvard study, people who ate a lot of walnuts improved their good cholesterol levels and hardly gained weight. The secret lies on its high ALA content which is an Omega 3 fatty acid that helps protect the heart.
Walnuts are great in giving you the right posture. It seems that walnuts are helpful in preventing bone breakage because of ALA. Again, it is best to eat nuts raw and avoid roasted or irradiated ones. You can eat walnuts together with your morning cereal.
Almonds are great nuts to eat if you need to catch some sleep. Apparently, almonds are rich in magnesium which together with melatonin helps people to get better sleep. Sleep deprivation often makes people a bit more edgy and can be one of the causes of anxiety. It also a great supplier of calcium, aside from milk, that will keep your bones and teeth stronger. The winning streak of almonds doesn’t end there as it can provide lots of anti-oxidants such as vitamin E and selenium. Selenium is beneficial especially to people wanting to have a cure for their anxiety symptoms.
Known by its nickname, the “skinny” nut, pistachio is great for weight loss because it has only three calories. Count ‘em three calories! It is also great to cut down your eating speed thus cutting your consumption which means less calorie intake. In a 2009 study, it showed that people ate 35 percent less if they are eating pistachios with shells on compared to people eating pistachios with the shells already discarded. Pistachios are full of lutein that can slow down the age-related eye disease macular degeneration and zeaxanthin which is a close relative of beta-carotene, a powerful anti-oxidant.
Hazelnuts are full of folate which is a relative of vitamin B which can help people lower the risk of heart problems. It can also help contain Alzheimer’s disease and some birth defects. The nut is also rich in arginine which is helpful in bringing blood pressure levels to normal and who can forget its magnificent dose of magnesium to help fight stress and anxiety.
Brazil nuts may not teach you the samba or how to play soccer but it will keep your heart healthy. Brazil nuts have a chockfull of copper, niacin, vitamin E, fiber and proteins that can help protect the heart from increased risks. It is also full of selenium and magnesium that can keep people calmer and less stressed and anxious.
Siberian cedar nuts have about 70 percent of the essential amino acids that the body needs. Cedar nuts have high amounts of vitamin A, B and D and alpha-tocopherol which is another way of saying vitamin E. This exotic nut is uncanny because it possesses oil that is also found in fish oil.
Pecans take the cake as the king nut with the most anti-oxidants. Pecans contain alpha-tocopherol, which is the kind of vitamin E that helps protect the heart. It protects the heart from oxidative stress that can produce free radicals that often destroy cells and cause harmful damage. It is also good in bringing down bad cholesterol levels and prevents the oxidation of low-density lipoprotein.
Are you now nuts? There are lots of wonderful things that you can get with eating nuts. Just remember to tone down on the salt, if you are on a low-sodium diet and avoid it if you are allergic. Enjoy and be nuts!