Each month, as part of our Foods of the Month club, two nutrient-dense foods are highlighted. During the month of April, fresh beans and nuts are the featured Foods of the Month.
Today we’re focusing on the benefits of eating certain types of nuts and highlighting their health benefits. Nuts are cholesterol-free and full of important vitamins, minerals, and nutrients, including protein, fiber and phytonutrients. The majority of fat in tree nuts (considered some of the healthier nuts) is unsaturated or “good” fat (i.e., mono and polyunsaturated fats). Certain kinds may help reduce the risk of chronic diseases like heart disease, diabetes and some forms of cancer. See how certain nuts can benefit your health:
Walnuts – These contain high amounts of omega-3 fatty acids, which keep our brain focused and protect against sickness by boosting the immune system.
Almonds – Eat a handful of almonds for a healthy serving of essential vitamins and minerals. One quarter cup of almonds has about as much calcium as a quarter cup of milk. This serving size amount is also high in magnesium, potassium, and vitamin E.
Cashews – These are heart healthy as they are lower in fat as compared to other nuts and are also high in essential vitamins and minerals.
Pecans – Naturally sodium-free, pecans are a great choice for people who are watching their salt intake. They are also an excellent source of vitamins and minerals.
Brazil Nuts – These contain antioxidants (such as selenium) to keep our bodies free of sickness and disease.
Macadamia Nuts – These are high in macadamia oil, a nutrient that is high in good fats.They may help reduce bad cholesterol, keeping our heats in top shape.
The key to including nuts in your diet without adding extra fat and calories is portion control; as little as one handful, or one ounce, of nuts per day can provide solid nutritional benefits.
What are your favorite types of nuts to eat?