Nuts. They’re great in desserts, sprinkled on top of salads or just a handful as a snack. But do you know the health benefits of these little treasures? Listed below are a few common varieties, the perks of eating them and healthy recipe to try out including them.
Available year round, pecans are rich in 19 vitamins and minerals including A, B, E, calcium and magnesium. Considered the most antioxidant rich tree nut, they can reduce high cholesterol and lower the risk of gallstones in women.
Health Nut Recipe: Better for You Pecan Pie
This kidney shaped nut is sweet in flavor and rich in heart friendly monounsaturated fat. These nuts are also high in copper for energy production and melanin for skin and hair pigment.
Health Nut Recipe: Curried Cashews
Soy nuts are actually roasted mature soybeans that provide all the essential amino acids. They are a high quality source of protein and just a ½ cup of soynuts has more than 75% of the Recommended Dietary Allowance of omega 3 fatty acids which are important for heart and brain health.
Health Nut Recipe: Dark Chocolate Soynut Butter Protein Bars
Pistachios have become very popular in recent years due to Wonderful® Pistachios advertisements featuring Korean artist Psy and Stephen Colbert. This member of the cashew family is high in calcium for strong bones and teeth. Pistachios are also a great hunger suppressant and help prevent coronary artery disease and strokes.
Health Nut Recipe: Salmon Pistachio Lettuce Wraps
Walnuts have various health benefits including weight management to controlling the growth of cancer cells. Known as “brain food” due to its crinkly appearance they are an excellent source of vitamin B6 and omega 3 fatty acids. Studies have also shown that snacking on walnuts can boost your mood and help adults who are under stress or battling depression.
Health Nut Recipe: Blue Cheese Walnut Green Beans
Almonds provide the richest source of vitamin E which protects against Alzheimer’s disease and UV light damage. They are also free of gluten making them a popular ingredient in the creation of gluten free foods. Almond oil is extracted from these nuts and if used regularly it will keep the skin well moisturized.
Health Nut Recipe: Almond and Lemon Crusted Fish with Spinach