Five Reasons to Go Nuts with Nuts

The reputation of nuts has undergone a major change over the past decade or so. Touted as fatty food, in the past, today nuts are considered healthy and even diet-friendly. So, what do you know… Who do I believe? I needed to find answers about nuts and whether they were good for me before I started eating them. After all, I didn’t want to drop dead of a heart attack or something because I read somewhere that nuts were good for me and began eating it in earnest. So, here’s what I gathered…

Over the years, much research has been conducted over these nuts. Researchers have found that nuts contain various properties that help lower cholesterol, prevent heart disease and improve blood vessel function and controls diabetes. I also found out that the FDA, in 2003, claimed that one ounce of nuts on a daily basis reduced the risk of heart disease. Does this mean I should go nuts with nuts? My doctor says, “No way!” Apparently, this too, as with everything else, should be consumed in moderation. Sigh!

So, what donuts contain? Here are five important facts that may encourage you to make nuts a part of your daily diet.

Nuts Contain Omega-3 and 6 Fatty Acids – Omega 3 and 6 fatty acids aid in preventing and controlling heart disease, cancer, bowel disease, hypertension, and osteoporosis to name a few. Omega-3 and -6 also help with depression, boosts the immune system and aids in weight loss. Nuts, especially walnuts, butternuts, cashew, hazelnuts, and peanuts contain significant amounts of Omega-3 and -6 fatty acids.

Nuts are a Storehouse for Antioxidants – Nuts contain flavonoid antioxidants, such as carotenes, lutein, resveratrol, etc. These compounds help protect us against diseases, such as Alzheimer’s disease, degenerative nerve diseases, and viral/ fungi infections, etc. Out of all nuts that contain antioxidants, walnuts are the best.

Nuts are High in Dietary Fiber – Dietary fiber normalizes bowel movements, maintains the health of the bowels and controls blood sugar and lowers blood cholesterol. Nuts are an excellent source of soluble fiber. This means you will never have to worry about hemorrhoids and constipation. Almonds, pistachios, and pecans are good sources of dietary fiber in nuts.

Nuts Contain Many Minerals – Nuts are full of minerals that include manganese, calcium, iron, potassium, magnesium and zinc and fluoride, etc. Manganese is a powerful free radical scavenger. Potassium is necessary for cell building and controlling blood pressure. Copper and iron are necessary for the production of red blood cells and fluoride is good for bones and teeth.

Nuts Provide Vital B-Complex Vitamins – Riboflavin, niacin, thiamin and vitamin B-6 are vital B complex groups. All these are necessary for optimum health and overall wellbeing. Nuts contain all these B complex groups of vitamins.

You really don’t need any more reason than this to go nuts about nuts. The next time you are in the grocery store, add in a pack of mixed nuts to your purchases and have it as a snack or with your breakfast cereal. But, remember as my doctor said, “Everything in moderation”.

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