Go nutty! The super health benefits of nuts
If you’re trying to improve your health, there’s a simple thing you can add to your everyday diet – nuts! Yes, that’s right, those little nuggets are crammed full of healthy stuff. They’re a great snack food – portable, inexpensive and easy to store. Still need convincing? Here are seven reasons why eating nuts is good for you…
They keep you slim
Even though nuts are quite calorific and should be eaten in small portions, one study found that regular nut eaters were slimmer than those that didn’t eat nuts at all. This could be because they are full of healthy fats and protein, which keeps you feeling fuller for longer. If you’re prone to late night snacking, tucking into a handful of nuts, will help keep you away from the chocolate! If you fancy something a bit sweeter though, why not try Andrea’s chocolate nutty balls?
They help you live longer
One study found that eating nuts seven or more times a week reduced risk of death by up to 20%! Even eating them only once a week had a 7% reduction in risk of death. Another study showed that eating nuts helped reduced the risk of pancreatic cancer, so chow down on those nuts now if you want to live longer.
They help improve your memory
This is a good one if you suffer from the brain fog of the menopause or you’re just getting forgetful as you age. Eating nuts has been linked with improving overall brain function in older people. This is probably due to the omega-3 and antioxidants that they contain. If this means we’ll no longer leave our keys in the fridge, we’re off to snaffle those nuts right now!
They can help lower blood pressure
Generally foods that contain magnesium are good at helping to lower blood pressure. Almonds, brazils and cashew nuts contain the highest amount so instead of popping magnesium supplements, add a handful of nuts to your daily diet. For this reason, these nuts are also great if you suffer from headaches or migraines as the magnesium helps relax blood vessels and take the pain away.
They can make you feel happier
If you suffer from depression or anxiety, adding nuts to your diet may help improve your mental health. This is due to the fatty acids contained in them, which support brain function and reduce depression symptoms. Walnuts are the best choice with a whopping 2.6 grams per ounce.
Brazil nuts are also great as they are high in selenium, which helps to reduce inflammation, and Vitamin E, which has been found to be low in those people with anxiety and depression. If you struggle to eat nuts as they are, chop them up and add them to your cereal or sprinkle over a yogurt and fruit for a tasty dessert.
They help prevent heart disease
Studies have shown that eating a handful of nuts a day can reduce the risk of developing heart disease by up to 50%. This is most likely due to the healthy fats that help regular cholesterol and also the amino acid, arginine, which helps keep your blood vessels health and elastic.
They’re great for your skin
Perhaps it’s time to ditch the expensive anti-ageing cream and just add some nuts to your diet? Nuts are packed full of healthy skin ingredients that make you skin glow.
Walnuts are a good source of Vitamin B, which helps keep fine lines and wrinkles at bay. Almonds provide vitamin E that helps keep skin hydrated, while cashews and brazil nuts are great if you have spots. The selenium in them act as an antioxidant to fight acne, while the zinc helps renew and replenish any damage to the skin.