There are a lot of different types of nuts to choose from when you’re at the grocery store, and each of them have their benefits. Walnuts are the most unique of the bunch when they are grown, as they actually come inside of a green husk before being removed. They start to look much more tasty when removed from the shell, and it’s certainly proved when you bite into one. The walnut might not be the king (that title belongs to the almond) in terms of popularity, but there are still plenty of people eating walnuts.
Not only do walnuts taste fantastic, but they also bring a lot of nutritional benefits. Yes, they do contain quite a few calories just like other members of the nut family, but if you can look beyond that, you will see a lot of improvements to your overall health. Here are a few of the great proven benefits that you can get from eating more walnuts.
People tend to shy away from walnuts when they are trying to lose weight because of the calorie content. While it’s true that walnuts do contain quite a few calories, they can still be beneficial if you can control yourself around them. One ounce contains 183 calories (153 of which are from fat), but that one ounce also brings a lot of good with it. For starters, you are getting eight percent of your daily recommended fiber intake.
Minerals are abundant in each serving of walnuts, with nearly half of the recommended manganese amount that you should be ingesting. There is also more than 20 percent of your recommended copper, and more than 10 percent of your magnesium and phosphorus recommendations. Iron, calcium, zinc and potassium can also be found in walnuts. As for vitamins, there isn’t one that stands out above the rest, but you will be getting an important dose of vitamin B6, folate, thiamin, and more with each serving.
Most nuts have great benefits for your heart health, and walnuts certainly fit the bill. Walnuts have a high fat content, but most of the fat found in walnuts is monounsaturated fat and omega-3 fatty acids. These are the types of fats that are very beneficial for your heart, as they lower the bad type (LDL) cholesterol in your body while increasing the good (HDL) levels.
Regular walnut consumption has been shown to lower your chances of heart disease and high blood pressure tremendously. Many heart ailments are related to inflammation, and the fat content in walnuts work as an anti-inflammatory. You should also be taking any heart medication if you have been prescribed, but walnuts can help you prevent disease in the first place as well as boost the effects of medication.
Think About It
When it comes to the most important organs in your body, you think about the heart and the brain. We now know what walnuts can do for your heart, and it also has a positive effect on your brain. There are many different nutrients in walnuts that can help you out with anything from slowing down the signs of aging to helping you sleep and keeping away depression.
Walnuts do contain those omega-3 fatty acids, which help to make your mood better. People with depression are often told to take more omega-3, and walnuts are a great tasting and abundant source. Other studies have shown that you can lower your chances of neurological diseases such as Alzheimer’s thanks to increased consumption of omega-3 fatty acids. As for sleep, walnuts help your body produce melatonin, allowing you to get more restful sleep that is uninterrupted.
Walnuts carry a very low glycemic load, as there is almost no sugar to be found in each serving. Those that are looking to control their blood sugar (especially diabetics), should be eating more walnuts in their diet. Studies have shown that people with type 2 diabetes were able to lower their fasting insulin by eating more walnuts over the course of three months.
This study was also done with overweight patients, and they had their weight monitored. The patients were given a low amount of walnuts each day, and they were still able to find improved insulin levels without seeing an increase in their weight. Even if you don’t have diabetes, eating more walnuts can help prevent you from getting the disease.
As long as you can control the calorie count that you are getting from walnuts on a daily basis, they make for a great tool in the weight management department. Eating a controlled amount of walnuts on a regular basis has actually shown to help boost metabolism thanks to the nutrients including high fiber content. One study showed that patients lost an extra pound of fat on a calorie controlled diet compared to those that didn’t eat walnuts.
Eating foods such as walnuts that are high in fiber and protein will also make you feel less hungry. If you get a craving for a snack, eating a handful of walnuts can allow to feel satisfied and not craving unhealthier snacks.
Walnuts not only have some great benefits for your organs, but also for your exterior appearance. Walnuts contain a healthy amount of tannin, which allows you to reduce perspiration while also tightening your pores. Some people even use walnut oil in beauty products such as facial scrubs to take away some of the dead skin and oxidants that might be plaguing your skin.
Walnuts also have an effect on your hair, especially in its oil form. Walnut oil has been shown to help boost hair growth because of the multiple minerals such as iron and zinc. Washing away the dead skin on your scalp, you will see thicker and fuller hair that grows faster than it did before.
Summing it Up
There really aren’t many negatives at all for eating walnuts. Obviously, there are more people these days that have a nut allergy, so you have to make sure to not bring them around those that might be allergic as the results could be dire. Another thing you have to watch for is the calorie count. Walnuts are very tasty and it can be hard to limit yourself to a small amount at one time. The best way to combat over-snacking would be to have prepackaged calorie-counted bags.
Other than that, having a few servings of walnuts per week is going to help your body tremendously. Your heart, brain, blood sugar and more will see benefits that will allow you to live a longer and fuller life. All that in a tasty snack is very hard to beat.