Nuts are nature’s simple way of saying that good things can come in small packages. These small and healthy fruits are filled with proteins, healthy fats, vitamins and minerals.
It’s also important to consider that nuts are high in calories and fats, though a few nuts can be good until dinner, but adding a handful may be too much. Overeating these salty snacks can result in weight changes.
So, what are the best and worst nuts?
Almonds, Cashews, Pistachios
Nuts, in terms of calories per ounce are almost the same, and eating them in moderation is very healthy. These nuts contain protein, fiber and omega-3 fatty acids, which helps suppress appetite and will leave you feeling full.
Almonds have the lowest calorie, about 160 per ounce (23 nuts; 6 grams protein, 14 grams fat); pistachios (49 nuts; 6 grams protein, 13 grams fat); and cashews (16 to 18 nuts; 5 grams protein, 13 grams fat). And make sure to avoid packaged nuts or those that are roasted in oil. It is much better if you consume dry roasted or raw.
Macadamia Nuts, Pecans
Macadamia nuts contain 10 to 12 nuts; 2 grams protein, 21 grams fat while pecans have 18 to 20 halves; 3 grams protein, 20 grams fat. Both have high calories, at 200 each, they also have the lowest protein content and the highest amount of fat.
But, both are still good nuts: Macadamia and pecans differ only for about 40 calories per ounce from the rest when it comes to number of calories. What’s important is that you eat the right amount and not eating handfuls at the same time. Any plain or raw nut will provide you with a good amount of healthy fats, vitamins and minerals.
Nuts that are good for your heart:
Though nuts have heart-healthy omega-3 fatty acids, walnuts are considered to have the highest amounts of ALA or alpha linoleic acids. According to research that ALA can help with heart arrhythmias, and Spanish study conducted last 2006 proposed that walnuts have the same effect with olive oils when it comes to lowering inflammation and oxidation in the arteries after consuming a fatty meal.
Nuts that are good for your brain:
Also known as legumes but commonly referred as nuts, peanuts contain high amounts of folate, which are minerals vital for the development of the brain and helps protect the brain from cognitive decline. Peanuts are also a good choice for vegetarians, who can’t get enough folate and pregnant women, who require folate in order to protect babies from birth defects. Like the other nuts, peanuts also contain brain-boosting healthy fats and vitamin E. An ounce of peanuts has about 4 grams fat, 7 grams protein and 170 calories.
Best nuts for men:
Brazil Nuts, Pecans
Brazil nuts have selenium, a known mineral that helps men from prostate cancer and other ailments. According to a recent research that taking foods that are high in selenium may be associated with the risk of type 2 diabetes. An ounce of Brazil nuts comprises of 4 grams protein, 19 grams fat and 190 calories.
What are also good for men’s health are pecans. They contain beta-sitosterol, a steroid found in plants that can aid in relieving symptoms of BPH or benign prostatic hyperplasia or also commonly known as enlarged prostate. An ounce of pecans comprises of 3 grams protein, 21 grams fat and 200 calories.
Best nuts for disease prevention:
Almonds are low in calories; contain more calcium as compared to other nuts, making them an ideal food for general health. And they have high fiber contents and vitamin E, an antioxidant that aids in combating inflammation and probably health disorders like age-related cognitive decline and lung cancer.
Due to its versatility, almonds are considered as the favorite of nut lovers; you can eat them raw, slivered, and toasted or coat with different fun flavors, from Lime ‘n Chili to Wasabi and Soy Sauce.
Best nuts for your sweet tooth:
Try all-natural glazed nuts
If you want nuts that are sweet and at the same time satisfying without having that added calories and corn syrup. So why not try Sahale Snacks glazed nuts which come in various flavors such as Honey, Sea Salt and Almonds with Cranberries (an once contains 5 grams protein, 11 grams fat and 160 calories) or try Cashews with Pomegranate and Vanilla (an ounce has 4 grams protein, 1o grams fat and 150 calories). These nuts are sweetened with tapioca syrup and organic cane juice, and each only has 6 grams of sugar per one ounce. Just refrain from eating the whole bag
Now that you have a good idea as to what nuts are good, however to attain a lot of health benefits from them, it is vital that you pay attention how you eat them. When eating nuts, it is always great to pair them with carbohydrates such as juices or fruits for it will aid in the breakdown of sugar and slowing down digestion.