>If there was a food (group) that packed a powerful antioxidant punch, contained cholesterol lowering compounds and other regulating dietary fibers, was rich in anti-inflammatory, brain-boosting Omega-3 and Omega-6, kept you fuller longer AND tasted incredible on its own or added to other foods, would you eat it every day?
This incredible food group is…NUTS!
A lot of people still fear this food (group) but rest assured, when you incorporate nuts into your daily diet, the positive impact they have will lay your fat fears to rest. While there are a myriad of benefits to eating nuts, you still want to be sure that you don’t get carried away with them, as they are high in calories. Working them into your meal plan is certainly worthwhile. Here is a list of some of the best nuts:
These nuts are relatively high in Omega-3 and Omega-6 fats, but the really great thing is that because they are so rich in these essential fatty acids, eating them won’t throw your ratio off balance. The Omega-3 found in walnuts is ALA or alpha linolenic acid, which has heart health benefits. On top of that walnuts also contain ellagic acid which has antimutigenic and anticarcinogenic properties.
Almonds contain a large amount of several important vitamins such as magnesium. For those of you smart enough to steer clear of milk, 20 almonds provides you with more calcium than a ¼ cup of milk. Almonds contain high levels of immune-boosting zinc, in addition to their good fat properties. They are high in Omega-6, so make sure you watch your portions or balance it out with a serving of Omega-3 from another source like fish or flax. Almonds are also very high in vitamin E, which is a powerful antioxidant. Each serving of almonds provides you with a healthy amount of fiber. Recent studies from Purdue University show almonds increase the level of satiety and reduce overall calorie consumption.
Inca Nuts (these are really more of a seed or legume, but I’ve included it because of its name)
These delicious Peruvian snacks can be found in most health food stores due to their many health benefits. Exotic Inca nuts or sacha seeds are quite high in Omega-3 ALA, which is a precursor to the brain-boosting DHA/EPA fish oils. A one-ounce serving of Inca nuts has 5 grams of fiber and is high in antioxidants vitamin E and A.
These high oleic acid and fiber-containing nuts are a great tool for lowering cholesterol. Hazelnuts contain a fair amount of blood pressure-lowering potassium and other heart health minerals like calcium and magnesium. These nuts have high vitamin E content. Of all the nuts, they contain the highest amount of folate which has been shown to reduce certain cancers, neural tube defects and depression.
By incorporating a serving of these nuts into your nutrition plan, you will not only benefit from the high vitamin, mineral, Omega-3, antioxidant and fiber content, but you may actually lose a few inches and be much healthier overall.Nutty for Nuts